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Four dessert experts share diy recipes to spoil your valentine sweet!

VALENTINE CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

Kookie Jar

Lovey

Ingredients

For the cake

110g unsalted butter
200g brown sugar
2 eggs (beaten)
˝tsp vanilla essence
50g dark chocolate (melted and then cooled a bit)
100g plain flour
˝tsp bicarbonate soda
125ml boiling water

For the icing

175g dark chocolate
75g milk chocolate
200ml double cream
˝tsp vanilla essence
Some fondant hearts

Method

For the cake: Line 12 muffin pans with paper cases. Preheat oven to 180°C. Sift the flour with bicarb soda. Cream the butter and sugar, then add eggs and vanilla, beating in well. Fold in the melted (and then cooled) chocolate; blend well. Do not over-beat. Gently add the flour and a spoon of boiling water alternately until you have a smooth batter. Fill the muffin paper cases and bake for 30 minutes. Cool and decorate as desired.

For the icing: Break all the chocolate into pieces, and heat with the cream and vanilla essence in a saucepan until it melts. Whisk to a good consistency. Spoon onto each cooled cupcake and decorate with fondant hearts. Do not refrigerate.

GRILLED STRAWBERRY ON FUDGE BROWNIE AND ICE CREAM

afraa deli

Asish Kumar Bose, senior sous chef, Ambuja Neotia (Afraa Deli)

Ingredients

200g strawberry
100g caramelised sugar
15ml brandy
50ml chocolate sauce
A scoop of vanilla ice cream
60g fudge brownie
Two wooden skewers
Mint for garnish

Method

Clean and wash the strawberries, and then mix them with caramelised sugar and brandy. Skewer the strawberries. Preheat a barbecue grill on medium-high. Place skewered strawberries on the grill and cook, turning occasionally for four-five minutes or till the strawberries start to soften. Serve it on brownie with ice cream and pour a little chocolate sauce on top. Garnish with mint. You can also serve it with whipped cream.

CHOCOLATE & STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE

mama mia!

Natasha Aggarwal

Ingredients

125g Oreo chocolate biscuits
50g butter (melted)
1tsp vanilla essence
300g cream cheese
50g icing sugar
140ml double cream (whipped)

For garnishing

Chocolate sauce
Oreo cookies
Fresh strawberry slices

Method

Put the biscuits in a plastic food bag and crush them using a rolling pin. Put the crumbs in a bowl and pour melted butter over it. Mix thoroughly until the crumbs are well coated. Tip them into a prepared loose-bottom tin and press firmly to create an even layer. Chill in the fridge for at least an hour for it to set firmly.

Place the soft cheese, icing sugar and vanilla essence in a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Tip in the cream and beat until the mixture is well combined. Refrigerate until set.

To unmould, place the base on top of a can; gradually pull the sides of the tin down. Slip cake onto a serving plate. Top with a layer of chocolate sauce, fresh strawberry slices and decorate with half an Oreo cookie. You can also replace chocolate sauce with fresh strawberry or mango puree.

ROSE CUPCAKES WITH CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

the rouge

Sumedha Singh

Ingredients

For the cupcake

100g butter
175g castor sugar
2tsp pure rose extract
2 large eggs
200g flour
1tsp baking powder
3tbsp milk

For the frosting

125g butter
˝tsp vanilla extract
200g icing sugar
50g cocoa powder
2tbsp milk

Method

For the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin cases. Put the butter, sugar and rose extract in a bowl and whisk until pale and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs and whisk well. Sift in the flour and baking powder, and mix well. Add milk to the mixture and stir. Fill the cases with the batter till it’s three-fourth full. Bake for 22-25 minutes until firm to touch.

For the chocolate frosting: Put the butter and vanilla extract in a bowl and whisk (with an electric mixer or by hand) until pale and fluffy. Sift in the icing sugar and cocoa powder; add the milk and mix together by hand until combined and then whisk until smooth and creamy. Once the cupcakes cool, spread the frosting generously over them.

Decorate your cupcakes with roses or hearts. Choose red or pink ready-made royal icing roses and use a large single bloom as a stunning centrepiece. Finish with red or pink heart sprinkles. You can also simply garnish with a rose petal (dried, candied or fresh).