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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."

Fratelli Paradiso’s Florentines


You'll need

75 gm caster sugar 50 ml pouring cream 50 gm butter, coarsely chopped 50 gm honey 25 gm liquid glucose 175 gm flaked almonds 100 gm whole almonds 6 red glacé cherries, halved 200 gm couverture dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), finely chopped

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 170C. Stir sugar, cream, butter, honey and glucose in a deep saucepan until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil over medium-high heat and cook until mixture reaches 112C on a sugar thermometer (4-6 minutes). Add flaked almonds and stir to combine. Line 2 oven trays with silicon mats or baking paper and divide mixture into 12 oiled 10cm-diameter tart rings (see note), spreading thinly and evenly. Decorate with whole almonds and cherries and bake in rings until golden brown (10-15 minutes). Remove rings and set aside to cool on trays.
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, melt two-thirds of the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of hot, not boiling, water (be sure water doesn’t get into chocolate) until chocolate reaches 43C-46C on a sugar thermometer (it’s important not to exceed this temperature). Remove bowl from heat, cool chocolate to 35C-38C, then add remaining chocolate and stir vigorously until melted. Coat bottom of Florentines with chocolate using a flat plastic spatula, allowing them to set slightly while you coat remaining, then coat again with a serrated-edge spatula or fork to produce a decorative pattern. Allow to set (20-30 minutes), then tidy edges with a pair of scissors before serving. Florentines will keep in an airtight container for a week.

Note Tart rings are available from kitchen supply shops.


"I really enjoy a short, sharp mid-week lunch at Sydney's Fratelli Paradiso and almost always finish with a coffee and Florentine," says Wennerbom. "I've tested many recipes for Florentines but none have been as good as theirs."


At A Glance

  • Serves 12 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 12 people

Featured in

Dec 2012

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