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Paul Carmichael's great cake

"Great cake, also known in Barbados as black cake or rum cake, is a variation of British Christmas cake that's smashed with rum and falernum syrup," says Momofuku Seiobo chef Paul Carmichael. "This festive cake varies from household to household but they all have two things in common: tons of dried fruit and rum. It's a cake that should be started at least a month out so the fruit can marinate in the booze. Start this recipe up to five weeks ahead to macerate the fruit and baste the cake."

Decadent chocolate dessert recipes for Christmas

13 of our most decadent chocolate recipes to indulge guests with this Christmas.

Chocolate, almond and honey zuccotto (zuccotto di cioccolato, mandorle e miele)


You'll need

8 eggs 250 gm caster sugar 250 gm plain flour 80 ml Marsala For dusting: pure icing sugar and Dutch-process cocoa For drizzling: honey, warmed   Chocolate-hazelnut cream 400 ml thickened cream 2 tbsp caster sugar 70 gm dark chocolate (54% cocoa solids), finely grated 20 gm each hazelnuts (skins removed) and almonds, roasted, coarsely chopped   Chocolate mousse 250 gm dark chocolate (54% cocoa solids), coarsely chopped 100 gm butter, coarsely chopped 7 eggs, separated 2 tbsp pure icing sugar, sifted 50 gm caster sugar 200 ml pouring cream, whisked to soft peaks

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 160C. Whisk eggs and sugar in an electric mixer until doubled in size (5-7 minutes). Sift over flour, carefully fold through with a metal spoon, pour into a 30cm square baking paper-lined cake tin and bake in centre of oven until a skewer withdraws clean (30-40 minutes). Cool in tin for 5 minutes, then turn out and cool completely on a wire rack.
  • 02
  • Line a 2.5 litre-capacity bowl (15cm deep, 25cm diameter at the top) with strips of baking paper, letting the edges hang over (this will help you remove zuccotto from mould). Halve sponge horizontally. From one half, cut a circle to fit top of bowl and set aside. From the other half, cut a 6cm diagonal incision into each corner of sponge, then carefully line bowl with sponge, cutting sponge to fit and using remaining sponge to fill any gaps. Drizzle sponge with half the Marsala and set aside.
  • 03
  • For chocolate-hazelnut cream, whisk cream and sugar in an electric mixer until soft peaks form (2-3 minutes), fold through chocolate and nuts. Spoon into sponge-lined bowl, smooth top and refrigerate.
  • 04
  • Meanwhile, for chocolate mousse, melt chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water, stir occasionally until smooth (3-5 minutes), then set aside to cool slightly. Whisk egg yolks and icing sugar in a separate heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until thick and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Meanwhile, whisk eggwhites and caster sugar in an electric mixer until soft peaks form and set aside. Fold chocolate mixture into yolk mixture with a metal spoon, then fold in eggwhites and finally cream. Spoon over chocolate-hazelnut cream, smoothing top. Place reserved sponge circle on top, drizzle with remaining Marsala, cover with baking paper, weight with a large plate and refrigerate overnight.
  • 05
  • To serve, carefully invert zuccotto (remove baking paper), dust with icing sugar and cocoa, cut into wedges and drizzle with warm honey.

"I absolutely adore the zuccotto from Lucio's in Paddington and I'm hoping to make it for an Easter lunch. Could you obtain the recipe?"
Jane Pickard, Double Bay, NSW

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To request a recipe, write to Fare Exchange, Australian Gourmet Traveller, GPO Box 4088, Sydney, NSW 2001, or email us. All requests should include the restaurant's name and address or business card, as well as your name and address.


At A Glance

  • Serves 12 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 12 people

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