Combining chocolate with a strong red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon might sound an unlikely idea, but if you think about the wine’s red berry flavours it makes sense. It also adds an intriguing edge to this dessert that I bet none of your guests will be able to identify. The ideal Cabernet to use is one that is ripe and fruity but not too oaky.
- 175ml/¾ cup fruity Cabernet Sauvignon, preferably from California, Chile or Australia
- 40g tablespoons caster/granulated sugar
- 200g dark chocolate (70 per cent cocoa solids)
- 280ml/11/3 cups single cream
- 1 egg
- a pinch of ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 6 or 8 small pots, ramekins or espresso coffee cups, 100 ml each
- Put the wine and caster/granulated sugar in a saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved.
- Increase the heat very slightly and simmer gently for about 20–25 minutes until the wine has reduced by two-thirds to about 4 tablespoons. Meanwhile, break the chocolate into squares, and put them in a blender. Blitz briefly to break them into small pieces.
- Put the cream in a saucepan and heat until almost boiling. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate in the blender, then add the hot, sweetened wine. Leave for a few seconds so the chocolate melts. Whizz briefly until the mixture is smooth.
- Add the egg and cinnamon and whizz again briefly to mix.
- Pour the mixture into 6 or 8 small pots, ramekins or espresso cups, then chill in the refrigerator for 3–4 hours.
- Remove the chocolate pots from the refrigerator 20 minutes before serving.
- To serve, sprinkle a thin layer of cocoa powder over the top of each pot.
What to drink
A small glass of vintage character or late-bottled vintage port or a sweet red dessert wine would work well with these chocolate pots.
Recipes are from Wine Lover’s Kitchen by Fiona Beckett, with photography by Mowie Kay. Published by Ryland Peters & Small and available from all good booksellers.