These pots are somewhere between a mousse and a custard, and are lovely for your next dinner party (you can make them up to two days ahead, cover each pot with a piece of cling film and simply store in the fridge). Add a sprinkling of chopped praline or nut brittle to the top of each pot just before serving, if desired.
Recipe and styling by Claire Ferrandi
Photograph by Dylan Swart
Chocolate crème pots with spice-caramelised naartjies
CHOCOLATE CRÈME POTS
- 45ml (3 tbsp) cocoa powder
- 45ml (3 tbsp) cornflour
- pinch salt
- 80ml (1/3 cup) milk
- 250ml (1 cup) thick/double thick
- cream + extra, to serve (optional)
- 3 egg yolks
- 625ml (2½ cups) milk
- 115g castor sugar
- 2 x 80g slabs dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla essence
- 100g sugar
- 125ml (½ cup) water
- 4 cardamom pods
- 3 cloves
- 2 cinnamon quills
- 2 naartjies, peeled and segmented
For the chocolate pots, whisk together the cocoa powder, cornflour and salt in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the 80ml (1/3 cup) milk until the mixture is smooth and lump free. Whisk the thick/double thick cream into the mixture, then whisk in the egg yolks until well combined.
Place the 625ml (2½ cups) milk and the castor sugar in a medium pot, and heat over medium heat until just before boiling point, then remove from heat and whisk into the cream-cornflour-cocoa powder mixture. Whisk until smooth and lump free, then return the mixture to the pot and heat over medium-high heat. Bring the pudding to a boil (the cornflour stabilises the mixture, so you don’t need to worry about the egg yolks scrambling), 2 minutes, whisking continuously (making sure the whisk scrapes the base of the pot and corners to prevent burning). Remove from heat, add the chopped dark chocolate and vanilla essence, stirring, until the chocolate has melted.
Divide the mixture among 8 ramekins or teacups, cover the tops of each with cling film and place in the fridge, at least 4 hours, but up to 2 days.
About an hour before serving, make the spice-caramelised naartjies by adding all of the ingredients, except the naartjie segments, to a small pot. Place over high heat and boil, 5 minutes, without stirring, but swirling the pot occasionally. Reduce the heat to a simmer, add the naartjie segments and simmer, a further 10 – 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the ingredients in the pot (heat gently just before serving). Remove the chocolate pots from the fridge, 5 – 10 minutes before serving, to take the chill off them. Top with the warmed naartjie segments and serve with thick/double thick cream alongside for adding, if desired.