Perfect puddings

These melt-in-your-mouth puddings are to savour, write Angela Casley and Nigel Slater.

Chocolate whisky mud cakes

If you make these delightful little cakes ahead of time, return them to the oven to warm through for 5 minutes before serving with the sauce and a scoop of ice cream.

Makes 6

200g caster sugar

150ml milk

150g butter

150g dark chocolate

2 Tbsp whisky

200g plain flour

2 Tbsp cocoa

½ tsp baking powder

1 egg

Chocolate whisky sauce

100g chocolate, chopped

100ml cream

whisky to taste (1-2 Tbsp)

To serve

ice cream

passionfruit pulp


1. Heat the oven to 160degC. Grease and line the base of 5 x 200ml cups or molds.

2. Place the sugar, milk, butter, chocolate and whisky into a bowl over simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove and allow to cool to room temperature.

3. Sift the flour and cocoa into the chocolate mixture, then stir through the egg until smooth. Pour into your molds and bake for 25 minutes. It’s good if they’re a little gooey in the middle.

4. For the chocolate sauce, bring the cream to the boil, then remove from the heat. Add the chocolate and stir until smooth. Then stir through the whisky to taste.

5. Serve with a scoop of ice cream and top with passionfruit pulp. —

Browned butter, blackberry and hazelnut friand

This blackberry friand recipe is baked in one large dish rather than as individual cakes. I like it this way, poised somewhere between pudding and cake, served warm from the oven, in generous, fruit-studded spoonfuls. Keep a careful eye on the browning butter. It should be a rich hazelnut brown, but no darker. If there are any brown speckles, pour the butter through a fine sieve before using it.

Serves 4

180g butter

100g hazelnuts, skinned

50g plain flour

180g icing sugar

1 tsp lemon zest

5 egg whites

250g blackberries and raspberries


1. Heat the oven to 160degC fan. Line a 24cm baking dish with baking paper. Melt the butter in a small pan over a moderate heat. Watch carefully as the butter first froths and then calms down and starts to turn deep gold. Once it is walnut-coloured and smells nutty and toasted, remove immediately from the heat and set aside.

2. Toast the hazelnuts in a shallow pan until they are golden. Move them around regularly to brown evenly. Tip into a food processor and reduce to fine crumbs.

3. Sift the flour and icing sugar into a large mixing bowl, then stir in all but 1 tablespoon of the ground hazelnuts. Stir in the lemon zest. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they reach a soft, sloppy foam.

4. Make a deep well in the flour and sugar, then add the beaten egg whites and the melted butter. Combine everything lightly but thoroughly, then pour into the prepared dish. Scatter the blackberries and raspberries over the surface, then the reserved ground hazelnuts.

5. Bake for 35 minutes until risen and golden brown. The surface should be lightly crunchy; the inside soft and spongy. Remove from the oven and leave to settle for 10 minutes before serving. — Guardian News and Media


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