A deeply gooey and gorgeous pudding.
For the water ganache
310g whipping cream
325g dark chocolate, chopped (minimum 60 per cent cocoa solids)
50g unsalted butter
For the pudding mix
240g dark chocolate, chopped (minimum 60 per cent cocoa solids)
225g unsalted butter
100g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
350g eggs (about 7 large eggs)
150g unrefined castor sugar
For the water ganache, place 110 grams cold tap water and the cream in a saucepan over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. In the meantime, place the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and allow it to melt completely.
Once the chocolate has melted, add the water and cream mixture to it in three additions and mix thoroughly with a spatula after each addition. Stir in the butter. Allow to stand until it reaches room temperature, then stir one more time. Pour the ganache into a deep-sided container until it reaches three centimetres deep.
Place the tray in the freezer for two hours or until fully set.
Meanwhile, have ready six five-centimetre-diameter ramekins. Using a two-centimetre ring cutter, cut cylinders out of the ganache, and place one in the centre of each ramekin. Return to the freezer. To make the pudding mix, place the chocolate and the butter in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and melt completely. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
In the meantime, sieve the flour and salt together into a bowl. When the chocolate is cool, add the flour and salt and mix thoroughly. Using a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the eggs and sugar for about eight-10 minutes or until light and creamy. Fold a third of the egg mixture into the chocolate, being as gentle as possible. Add the remaining egg mixture and fold until well combined. Half fill each ramekin with the mixture and tap the ramekin a few times on the bottom to ensure any big air bubbles disappear, then continue to fill to the top.
Place the ramekins back in the freezer for one hour. When ready to serve, pre-heat the oven to 180C. Place the ramekins in the oven. Bake for 15-18 minutes until the pudding mix is fully set. Serve immediately.
The traditional way to make a chocolate pudding with a runny centre is by baking a mixture of eggs, butter, sugar, chocolate and a little flour until the outside forms a crust but the inside remains gooey. This recipe takes a completely different approach, putting a frozen chocolate ganache inside the cake mixture. This ensures the centre melts to the perfect runny consistency at exactly the point when the exterior is cooked through. If you want to skip making the ganache, you could use a scoop of good-quality chocolate ice-cream instead.
Recipe from Heston Blumenthal at Home, by Heston Blumenthal, published by Bloomsbury, $65.