If you have been looking to upgrade your baking skills from the regular chocolate cake to something more sophisticated — like the appealing desserts that appear on a bakery’s display — look no further. Chef Praveen Gonsalves — from Barbeque Nation Hospitality — shares some of his delectable chocolate-related recipes, and with some expert tips too.
Serves 6 portions | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Baking time: 1.20 hours
300g – Dark chocolate
12 tbsp – Unsalted butter
¼ tsp – Salt
6 – Eggs
1½ cup – Sugar
1 tbsp – Coco powder
200g – Fresh raspberry
Whipped cream to serve
* Place the chocolate, butter & salt in a large microwave safe bowl and melt the chocolate for about 2 minutes. Stir well, and heat for another 2 minutes till the chocolate & butter are completely melted. Set it aside.
* Beat the egg and sugar till thick, and fold in the melted chocolate in the egg mixture.
* Pour the batter in a 9-inch prepared non-stick baking pan. Place the pan in a moderately hot oven and bake for 1 hour at 180°, or till the inserted tooth pick in the centre comes out clean.
* Remove the baked cake from the oven and allow it to rest on a wired rack for at least 8-10 hours. Dust coco powder, and garnish with fresh raspberry on top.
* Serve with whipped cream.
Chef’s tip: You can add some chopped dry raspberry in the cake just to enhance the taste.
Brownie Bottom Cheesecake
Serves 15 portions | Preparation time: 35 minutes | Baking time: 1 hour approx.
Ingredients for brownie bottom
125g – Unsalted butter (room temperature)
125g – Dark compound chocolate
250g – Sugar
100ml – Milk
150g – Refined flour
Ingredients for cheese cake topping
550g – Cream cheese (room temperature)
175g – Sugar
1 tsp – Vanilla essence
175g – Hung curd
Melted dark and white chocolate for garnish
Method for brownie
* Place the chocolate & butter in a large sauce pan and melt over a double boiler. Add sugar and mix well. Set aside and let it cool.
* Using a hand blender, add milk & eggs one by one and beat at a low speed. Mix well and fold in the flour, and mix well again. Spoon the batter in a prepared 2-inch muffin cup. You will get 16 brownies in this mixture.
* Place the prepared moulds in a tray and bake in a moderately hot oven at 180° for 20-25 minutes. Once the brownies are baked, remove them from the oven and set aside to cool.
Method for cheese cake topping
* Place all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and beat well with a hand blender till light and fluffy.
* Pour the cheese mixture on the baked brownies and place it back on the trays. Bake at 160° for another 35-40 minutes, or till the center is well cooked.
* Remove from oven and allow it to cool in a refrigerator for about 8-10 hours.
* Melt the dark and white chocolate separately in a microwave, and drizzle over the prepared cheese cake before serving.
Chef’s tip: Do not add baking powder or baking soda to the brownie. You can use a table spoon of coco powder to the brownie recipe if you would like the brownie to be a little bitter.
White Chocolate Cheesecake
Serves 8 portions | Preparation time: 30 minutes | Baking time: 1 hour approx.
125g – Butter
12 tbsp – Sugar
1½ tsp – Vanilla essence
125g – All-purpose flour
225g – Philadelphia cream cheese
120g – White compound chocolate
Raspberry crush to serve
Raspberry and strawberry for garnish
* In a large mixing bowl, place 3 tbsp sugar, butter and ½ tsp vanilla essence. Using a rubber spatula, cream the butter until it is light and fluffy. Add flour and fold well to form a soft dough. Do not knead it.
* Press the prepared dough on a 9/6-inch square baking tray and prick the top of the dough with a fork. Bake for 20 minutes at 160° till the top crust is light brown.
* Place the chocolate in a large microwave safe bowl and melt the chocolate for about 2 minutes. Stir well and heat for another 2 minutes till the chocolate is completely melted. Set it aside.
* Using a hand beater, beat cream cheese, remaining sugar & vanilla essence in a large bowl till the mixture is soft and fluffy. Add the chocolate mixture and eggs one by one, while beating on low speed after addition of each egg. Blend well and shift the mixture on to the baked crust. Level the top and bake at 160° for 50 minutes, or till the inserted tooth pick in the centre comes out clean.
* Remove from oven and allow the cake to cool. Loosen the edges by running a sharp-edged knife. Set the cake in a refrigerator for 4-5 hours before serving. Top with 3-4 tbsp of raspberry crush and garnish with strawberry or raspberry before serving.