Fin­ish din­ner in STYLE

Havelock North Village Press - - Food -

Award win­ning food writer Matt Pre­ston whisks us around the world with his new book Yummy Easy Quick, Around the World.

We ex­pe­ri­ence the de­lights of the world’s great­est cuisines as we visit places like Ja­pan, China, France. Italy, the Mid­dle East and more.

Pre­ston en­sures the recipes are quick and easy to make for the home cook — no time-con­sum­ing tech­niques that will have you spend­ing far too long in the kitchen.

But he ad­mits the book is not au­then­tic and def­i­nitely not au­thor­i­ta­tive, in fact he says it should be called ‘Fak­ing It’.

“You’ll soon re­alise that by com­bin­ing cer­tain key in­gre­di­ents a dish quickly starts to take on the unique feel of one or an­other cor­ner of the world,” says Pre­ston.

This book will help you knock up a tasty and thor­oughly con­vinc­ing pad thai or a samosa pie in less time that it takes to find the lo­cal take­away menu or scroll through your choice of take­away app.

Fol­low­ing is one of his recipes:

EMMA’S HOT CHO­CO­LATE TORTE with SOUR CREAM

Emma War­ren is my right-hand woman when we do din­ners over­seas.

As the other half of the Two War­rens, she runs a very tight ship and uses skills that are part steel and part Machi­avelli to get dis­grun­tled chefs to sur­prise them­selves with how good they can be. She also writes a mean recipe and, as she’s spent much more time in Mex­ico than me, it seemed wise to ask her to help with this sec­tion.

Emma is also one of those rare chefs who is strong with both sweet and savoury flavours; and, even rarer, she loves to cook at home. This torte is a con­stantly evolv­ing work in progress, but one that is pretty close to its pin­na­cle of ease and de­li­cious­ness.

Make it once, and I am sure it will be­come a go-to when you’re un­der the pump and need a crowd-pleaser to fin­ish a din­ner in style.

In­gre­di­ents

■ 250g dark cho­co­late (70% co­coa solids, or go even higher if you want), finely chopped

■ 200g un­salted but­ter, plus ex­tra for greas­ing

■ 4 eggs

■ 80ml (1⁄3 cup) of your favourite cof­fee liqueur, plus ex­tra to serve (op­tional)

■ 100g (1⁄2 cup) raw caster sugar

■ 30g (1⁄4 cup) al­mond meal

■ 1 Tbsp plain flour

■ 2 tsp dried chilli flakes, plus ex­tra to serve

■ 1⁄2 tsp ground cayenne

■ 125g (1⁄2 cup) sour cream

Method

Pre­heat the oven to 190C/170C fan­forced. Grease a 20cm spring­form tin and line the base with bak­ing pa­per.

Place the cho­co­late and but­ter in a heat­proof bowl set over a saucepan of sim­mer­ing wa­ter, mak­ing sure the bowl doesn’t touch the wa­ter, and stir reg­u­larly un­til melted and com­bined. (Al­ter­na­tively, place in a mi­crowavesafe bowl and melt in the mi­crowave on high, stir­ring ev­ery 30 sec­onds.) Set aside for 5 min­utes to cool slightly.

Add one egg at a time and stir with a wooden spoon un­til well com­bined. Stir in 2 ta­ble­spoons of the cof­fee liqueur, then fold through the sugar, al­mond meal, flour, chilli and cayenne un­til well com­bined.

Pour the cho­co­late mix­ture into the pre­pared tin and bake for 35 min­utes or un­til a skewer in­serted in the cen­tre comes out clean. Set aside to cool in the tin for 30 min­utes, then re­lease the torte from the tin and trans­fer to a wire rack to cool com­pletely.

Cut the torte into slices and driz­zle with the re­main­ing liqueur. Top each slice with a big dol­lop of sour cream. If you like, make a well in the cen­tre of the cream and pour in some ex­tra liqueur. Sprin­kle with ex­tra chilli flakes and serve.

TIP

If you want to be re­ally or­gan­ised, bake the torte a day ahead. It will keep in an air­tight con­tainer in the fridge for up to 5 days. Bring it to room tem­per­a­ture to serve.

Award win­ning food writer Matt Pre­ston.

Yummy, Easy, Quick around the World by Matt Pre­ston, Macmil­lan, $39.99

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