9 March 2009


Chocolate lava cake

Molten chocolate lava cakes have become quite the talk of the town in recent years – slightly crispy exterior opening to reveal a melting chocolate heart! They really are the best of both worlds… a chocolate pudding & chocolate cake combined.

Though I have to admit that I have shied away from serving these lovely cakes at dinner parties, as the whole de-moulding process can go so terribly wrong – towers cracking, chocolate promenading, desert plates ruined.

It was Katya’s TEA CUP idea that solved the problem! Five to six cups (sturdy Ikea variety works best), are buttered & sprinkle with crystally demerara sugar, then covered with unctuous chocolate batter. After being perfectly cooked, they are served with a dollop of whipped cream & powdered with coco or spice.

The presentation is beautiful, the taste divine & gone is the impending doom of serving. You don’t even need to rush out & buy expensive fancy moulds to make this desert!

See link ‘Chocolate lava cakes‘ below for recipe:



26 November 2008



‘Crème caramel, tarte aux pommes, mousse au chocolat… ‘ the mouth watering desert song French waiters serenade you with at the end of each meal. I often choose the apple tart or am wooed into thinking I have room for the crème caramel… even when I don’t. The chocolate mousse normally passes me by, on direct route to my mother!

However,… you saw that word coming I know… that was until Alice gave me the secrets to her famous chocolate mousse. Now I admit that recipe tinkering has gotten the better of me on more than one occasion and this time was no exception. However after a rather unsatisfactory attempt at experimenting with cream & coco powder I went back to her original recipe. BLISS…. utter perfection – Olivier had gone speechless. Three simple ingredients DARK CHOCOLATE, EGGS & BUTTER…  to create a light, not too sweet, rich & chocolaty desert.


Chocolat noir et blanc cardamon

{PETITS POTS DE CHOCOLAT NOIR ET BLANC A LA CARDAMOME} The dinner party…… a wonderful event, but for the host it can become a juggling act to create delicious dishes that are easy, made in advance and beautiful! Do not let the picture above fool you – this is an easy recipe, that is based on Trish Deseine’s ‘Petits pots de chocolat’ with a twist. I have wooed many a guest at the end of a dinner where the conversation goes quiet and everyone relishes in this heavenly desert.

The original recipe calls for only dark chocolate, which is sinful but as it is summer I felt the need to lighten things up – so I divided the recipe in 2 and created one rich dark chocolate cream layer and a 2nd delicate white chocolate layer with a hint of cardamon, finished with a dust of cacao.



3 July 2007

Earl Grey Chocolate Cake


As the story goes… when my mother was pregnant with me, she used to crave chocolate so badly that she would eat several bars a day! Yet dispite this early training, I came into the world without the ‘chocolate gene‘, and therefore never truly understood what all the fuss was about when it came to desserts like chocolate cake (cries of NO & SHAME!!!)

This was until my friend Evelyn sent me her recipe for “Flourless Chocolate Brownies“. With my mother’s birthday approaching and knowing her weakness for anything chocolate, I thought what better an opportunity than to try out what Evelyn described as the most deliciously, delectable chocolate dessert she had ever tasted.

Being without a brownie pan, I decided to turn the recipe into a cake, and instead of using only plain 70% dark chocolate, I substitute 3/4 “DOLFIN” Earl Grey Tea 70% dark chocolate . The only thing left to say is that after some 20 odd years I have finally found …… chocolate cake!


petit gâteau fraises et creme de rose

{PETITS GÂTEAUX AUX FRAISES ET CREME DE ROSE} I am in love….. and my current infatuation comes from the general direction of the kitchen ‘quelle surprise’! It all started when reading Donna Hay’s delicious recipe for “Raspberry cream cupcakes” on the Telegraph website And so the song “Two for tea and Tea for two…. ” from the Musical ‘No No Nanette’ became stuck in my head.

It will come as no surprise that with grass routes in England, that tea time holds a special place in my heart – and what better to go with a cup of tea than a dainty little cake. This is a twist on the traditional fairy cake or cupcake as North American’s call it,  but one that brings back sweet memories of being a little girl serving tea to my dollies. It is shocking how many cakes a plastic doll can consume all by herself 😉

I began with the printed recipe as a base and modified a few things as I went along: as I had just bought local strawberries at the market that morning I decided to substitute them for the raspberries, and thought that a touch of rosewater and sugar would go nicely with the cream.