A slightly more delicate, but still indulgent, version of a fondant, this Aubergine Chocolate Fondant from Nourish Cakes has the added bonus of the antioxidants, fibre, vitamins and minerals from the aubergine (eggplant) plus healthy fats from the nuts and chocolate. Crème fraîche is the perfect accompaniment as the sourness cuts through the rich chocolate, but if you are going non-dairy then try the coconut crème fraîche recipe below.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4)
1 medium aubergine (eggplant)
140g (5oz) dark chocolate (55%
cocoa solids), roughly chopped,
plus 40g (1½oz) extra chocolate
for the centre
90g (3¼oz/scant ¹⁄³ cup) honey
¼ tsp salt
1 egg and 1 yolk
50g (1¾oz/½ cup) ground almonds
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
coconut oil, for greasing
FOR THE COCONUT CRÈME FRAÎCHE (Optional)
150g (5¼oz/½ cup) coconut cream
125g (4¼oz/½ cup) dairy-free
yoghurt, such as soya or coconut
10g (¼oz/2 tsp) coconut oil, melted
juice of ¼ lemon
If making the coconut crème fraîche, mix all ingredients together with a small whisk, then chill for 2 days to sour and thicken.
Grease 4 medium ramekins with a generous amount of coconut oil and chill.
Pierce the aubergine (eggplant) all over and microwave on full power for 8–10 minutes, turning over halfway through, until completely soft inside. Alternatively, roast whole in a hot oven (200°C/fan 170°C/400°F) for 40 minutes. Cool slightly, then slice in half and scoop out the flesh.
Weigh out 100g (3½oz) and purée in a blender. Add the 140g (5oz) chocolate on top and allow to melt for a few minutes. Add the honey and salt, and purée until smooth.
Scrape the mixture into a bowl, add the egg and yolk and whisk together with a balloon whisk.
In a separate bowl, sift the ground almonds, cocoa powder and baking powder, then add to the cake mix. Gently whisk together.
Use a jug or piping bag to fill the ramekins with the mix, pressing 1–2 squares of the
extra chocolate into the centre of each. Chill the fondants for a few hours, or up to 2 days.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 200°C/ fan 170°C/400°F. Place the fondants on a baking sheet and bake in the centre of the oven for 15–18 minutes, or until just puffing up and looking baked on top. They will still be quite delicate with squidgy, runny centres.
Serve with fresh berries and the coconut crème fraîche.
For more recipes like this, pre-order Nourish Bakes (Quadrille Publishing) here!