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Chocolate fondant with rhubarb mousse and sauternes jelly

This decadent chocolate pudding is also served with a white chocolate sorbet and delicate rhubarb crisps.

Ingredients

For the white chocolate sorbet
For the rhubarb mousse
For the sauternes jelly
For the chocolate fondant
For the crème anglaise
For the rhubarb crisp

Preparation method

  1. For the white chocolate sorbet, place the sugar and water into a saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved. Add the white chocolate and gently heat until melted. Set aside to cool, then transfer the mixture to the bowl of an ice cream machine and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Scrape the churned ice cream into a freezer-proof container and place into the freezer to chill until needed.

  2. For the rhubarb mousse, soak the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water until softened.

  3. Place the rhubarb into a pan with the water and gently cook over a medium heat for ten minutes, or until the rhubarb breaks down. Drain the softened gelatine leaves, squeezing out any excess liquid with your hands, and add to the cooked rhubarb. Stir until dissolved.

  4. Whisk the double cream in a bowl to a ribbon consistency. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white until soft peaks form when the whisk is removed. Then add the caster sugar a little bit at a time, whisking continuously, until all of the sugar has been incorporated and the meringue is thick and glossy.

  5. Fold the cream and egg whites into the warm rhubarb mixture. Cover one end of four chef’s rings with cling film and brush the insides with vegetable oil. Divide the mousse evenly among the rings, then place into the fridge to set.

  6. For the sauternes jelly, place the wine into a pan and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, soak the gelatine in a bowl of cold water until softened. Drain the softened gelatine, squeezing out any excess liquid with your hands, and add to the hot sauternes wine, stirring until dissolved. Set aside to cool but not set, then pour a thin layer of the jelly mixture over the set rhubarb mousse. Place back into the fridge to chill and set.

  7. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Lightly grease four dariole moulds with butter and dust with cocoa powder.

  8. For the fondant, place the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (make sure the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl) and leave until melted. Remove from the heat, beat until well combined, then set aside.

  9. Whisk the eggs, egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl until pale and fluffy. Sift the flour over the egg and sugar mixture and mix well. Add the melted chocolate and butter mixture and mix until smooth and well combined. Spoon the mixture into the prepared dariole moulds and place into the fridge to chill for 20 minutes.

  10. Bake the fondants for 10-12 minutes, or until firm on the outside and still gooey in the middle. (You can test using a skewer inserted into the middle.)

  11. Meanwhile for the crème anglaise, place the milk, cream, vanilla pod and seeds into a heavy-based pan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly. Discard the vanilla pod.

  12. Whisk the egg yolks together with the sugar until pale and fluffy, then slowly whisk in the warm milk and cream mixture until smooth and well combined. Return the mixture to a clean pan and gently heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. Remove from the heat and pass through a fine sieve. Set aside until ready to serve.

  13. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C/325F/Gas 3.

  14. For the rhubarb crisp, peel the rhubarb into ribbons using a vegetable peeler, then cut into 5cm/2in pieces. Place the rhubarb onto a silicone baking sheet and sprinkle with the sugar, then bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden-brown and crisp.

  15. To serve, turn out the chocolate fondants onto a serving plate and garnish with the rhubarb crisps. Gently run a knife around the inside of the chefs rings to ease the rhubarb mousse out. Turn the mousse out onto the plate next to the fondant, place a scoop of white chocolate sorbet alongside. Drizzle the crème anglaise around the plate.

1-2 hours preparation time

30 mins to 1 hour cooking time

Serves 4

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