Billy Allan No. 7 Balmac, Dunedin
Why and how did you become a chef? I wasn't too
interested in school work, it is the only profession that I
wanted to pursue from a very young age.
Biggest professional challenge? Finding the right
staff with knowledge, although I am lucky to have working
with me talented people and also the constant challenge of
sourcing quality produce. Favourite ingredient?Seafood is
always a favourite, but it can be a challenge to get a
Best cooking tip? Using your hands, they tell you so
What type of food do you like to eat? Anything
home-made, at the moment we are enjoying making our own
mozzarella and ricotta.
Who cooks at home? 99% of the time my wife who is a
fantastic chef in her own right.
Favorite meal? Lots of items cooked on the BBQ set out
platter style so you can help yourself, or any kind of
Favorite kitchen gadget? Electronic kitchen probe
thermometers, so useful for temperature checking of meats,
baking and jams plus lots of other applications
How have people's tastes changed/latest food trends?People's
culinary awareness has increased with all the food shows,
cook books and internet resources, people are increasingly
open to trying new ingredients.
Battle of TV cooks Gordon Ramsay or Jamie Oliver?
Gordon Ramsay would technically be far ahead of Jamie Oliver.
Jamie Oliver has great personality but he is very limited in
his style, but it works for him.
Flourless chocolate pudding
No. 7 Balmac's Flourless chocolate pudding
650gm dark chocolate
6 free range eggs
150gm brown sugar
1 pinch of cinnamon
100gm castor sugar
10 greased ramekins
To make ganache, melt 250gm of chocolate and 400ml of cream
over a bain marie. Once melted put aside. Melt the remaining
400gm of chocolate over a bain marie. Remove once melted.
While that is melting, separate the eggs. Beat the brown
sugar with the eggs yolks; when it is fluffy, add the
cinnamon. Whisk egg whites until soft peaks form, then slowly
rain in the white sugar until hard peaks form. Whisk
mascarpone until stiff.
Place the ramekins in an oven tray with sides. Pour the first
melted chocolate ganache evenly into each ramekin. Fold
second chocolate mixture into the egg whites, then fold the
mascarpone mixture into the egg yolk mixture. Combine both
mixtures and evenly distribute between the ramekins. Fill the
tray with hot water until it reaches halfway up the sides of
Cover the tray with foil and bake at 180degC for 40mins.
Remove from the oven and allow the puddings to cool in the
water bath. If you want to reheat them, you can do so in the
microwave, then run a knife around the ramekin and tip
pudding on to a plate. The sauce will flow over the top.