Monday, 8 November 2010

Cheese and chocolate layered dessert with egg meringue

About the food:

This is a fusion between cheese & cream truffles and the classic french dessert oeufs a la neige au chocolat (eggs on top of the chocolate mountain), and it is absolutely heavenly and as sinful as any food could be!

Different tastes are revealed at each layers: The topmost layer chocolaty, decorated with egg meringue (poached egg whites in milk) followed by the lemony and creamy cheese layer.

It uses Italian ameretti biscuit in the last layer, which are hard and brittle with a bitter-sweet taste. It is the last one to be tasted. The last spoonful would be a bit strong in taste, with the bitter-sweet biscuity flavour. This needs an acquired taste, but once you have gathered it, you would love it, and which is like heaven!

Cooking time: 1 hrs.

Ingredients: (serves 5)

6-7 Italian Amerreti biscuits, roughly crushed in a mortar. (If you cannot get them, any chocolate wafers, like Kitkat could be used).
1/3 tbsp coffee
2 tbsp cointreau or brandy
2 egg whites
100 gms caster sugar

Chocolate custard:

400ml milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 tbsp caster sugar
3 egg yolks
2 tbsp cocoa powder

Cream Cheese Filling:

1/2 tsp gelatine
2 tbsp water
125 gm cream cheese, at room temperature
75 gm caster sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
150ml cream


1.Line up 5 tall glasses, and divide the biscuit mixtures among them. Pour 1/2 tbsp brandy in each. Mix 1/2 tbsp coffee in 1/4 cup of hot water, let it cool. Pour 1/2 tbsp coffee mixture in each of the glasses.

Cream cheese filling:
2. In a heat proof bowl, mix the gelatine and water. Place it on top of a pan of boiling water: the water should not touch the bowl. Mix it well by whisking it. Take it off from the pan and let it cool.
3.Put the cheese, sugar and lemon juice in a whisking bowl and whisk until well mixed and fluffy. Fold in the cream and whisk again. Mix the gelatine.
4.Pour the filling into each of the glasses, filling the glasses half through.Refrigerate for 15 mins.

Chocolate custard & egg meringue:

5.Add 2 tbsp of sugar to the egg whites.Whisk until white peaks are formed. Add the remaining sugar (from 100gms) and whisk until smooth.

6.Mix and boil the milk, vanilla and 3 tbsp of sugar. Poach the above meringue mixture in the milk, by dropping spoonfuls of them and cooking them for 4-5 mins, and gently turning them. Take them out on a kitchen paper when they are firm. Continue with all the mixture.

7. Take a heat proof mixing bowl and mix the above milk, cocoa powder and the egg yolks. Whisk them until smooth. Simmer them by putting in on top of a pan of boiling water: continue cooking until thick, and continuously stirring the mixture. Cool the mixture for 10 mins.

8. Pour the custard to fill the rest of the glasses, and top them up with the egg meringue.

9. Chill for 2 hrs; sprinkle with cocoa powder before serving.