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"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."

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Chocolate and almond millefeuille


This layered dessert is deceptively light, despite the creamy chocolate filling. It would also be beautiful with raspberries scattered over the chocolate crème for a burst of freshness.

You'll need

500 gm puff pastry (see puff pastry recipe) For eggwash: lightly beaten egg   Almond praline 80 gm almonds 220 gm (1 cup) caster sugar   Chocolate crème 220 gm dark chocolate (58% cocoa solids), finely chopped 110 gm milk chocolate, finely chopped 40 ml brandy 450 ml thickened cream

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 200C. Roll out pastry on a lightly floured surface to 3mm thick and refrigerate to rest (30 minutes). Cut out two 12cm x 25cm rectangles, prick with a fork and place each on a baking tray lined with baking paper, then freeze until firm (30 minutes).
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, for almond praline, roast almonds on an oven tray until fragrant and toasted (6-7 minutes), then cool slightly, chop and set aside. Stir sugar and 60ml water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, bring to the boil and cook without stirring, swirling pan occasionally and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush if crystals form, until dark caramel (4-5 minutes). Remove from heat, quickly mix in almonds, then pour onto a lightly oiled oven tray and set aside to harden (30 minutes). Break into shards and store in an airtight container until required. Store praline for up to a week in an airtight container. Just before serving, finely chop half the praline.
  • 03
  • Brush pastry lightly with eggwash, then place 4 small 2cm-high cookie cutters in the corners of each tray, cover with a piece of baking paper, then another baking tray (this helps the pastry rise evenly) and bake, swapping trays halfway through to cook evenly, until dark golden and crisp (20-25 minutes). Cool on trays for 15 minutes, then cool completely on wire racks.
  • 04
  • For chocolate crème, heat chocolate and brandy in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally, until smooth, then transfer to an electric mixer, add cream and whisk until soft peaks form (4-5 minutes). Refrigerate to firm up slightly (5-10 minutes).
  • 05
  • Halve each puff pastry rectangle lengthways with a large serrated knife and place one on a serving platter to form the base of the millefeuille, spread with a third of the chocolate crème, scatter with a little chopped praline, then sandwich with another piece of puff pastry. Repeat layering, finishing with a piece of pastry. Dust with icing sugar and crumble some of the remaining praline on top. Cut into slices with a large serrated knife and serve immediately.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people

Featured in

Oct 2014

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