- 5 T water
- 1/2 cup castor sugar
- 250 g 70% cocoa dark chocolate, chopped
- 150 g unsalted butter
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 t balsamic vinegar
- Pistachio ice cream:
- 2 cups milk
- 120 g pistachio nuts, pounded to a paste
- 5 egg yolks
- 70 g caster sugar
- 2/5 cup thick cream
Line a loaf tin approximately 12cm x 24cm with baking paper so that it comes up and over the sides (you have to pull this one by the paper to get it out). Don’t worry about the ends of the tin, as long as you can pull it out along the length of the sides to get it out!
Mix the water and 2/3 of the sugar in a saucepan and slowly bring to the boil for a minute. Add the chopped chocolate and stir gently to combine. Add the butter and stir gently to combine. Then add the egg yolks and gently stir to combine.
Allow the mixture to cool slightly while preparing the meringue. In a clean mixing bowl add the rest of the sugar, balsamic and the egg whites. Whisk till firm and shiny peak. Add 1/3 of meringue to chocolate mixture and fold gently until nearly combined, then add rest of mixture and continue to fold until well combined and no white bits are visible.
Mix should be somewhere in the region of a soufflé consistency and should not be pourable. Spoon gently into the loaf tin. Do not fill tin – stop at least 1/5th of the way from the top. Bake at 180ºC in a water bath for about 60 – 70 minutes or until you do the skewer test and only a few crumbs remain and the mix is reasonably firm.
The water must come up to at least 4/5ths of the way up the sides of the tin for even baking. Don’t worry when you see a few cracks during cooking. Check about halfway through, as you may have to turn temperature down to 170ºC if cake is getting too brown on top. Once cooked, leave cake to cool in tin completely. Remove it very gently from the tin.
Note: This is a rather difficult recipe to get right first time but well worth the practice to master. The end result should be dense looking but light as air and has a melt in the mouth texture and has to be handled very carefully or it will break. Serve slices with pistachio ice cream.
Bring milk to the boil, add paste and allow to cool and flavours to infuse. Whisk egg yolks with the sugar until creamed and ribboned. Pour milk mix on egg mix, whisking continuously.
Cook over a double boiler until custard coats the back of a spoon, about 8 –10 minutes Pass through a fine sieve and allow to cool. Add cream and churn in icecream machine.