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Fifteenth century feasts. Make them at home.

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Bittersweet Chocolate & Anglo Chile Budino with White Chocolate & Candied Ginger Crème Anglaise, Sour Cherries, & Gold Leaf. By Cat Cora
28/11/2011
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Ingredients:
 
Makes 12 small cakes or one 9-inch round cake.
-          ½ pound high-quality bittersweet chocolate
-          3 large eggs, plus 3 large yolks
-          3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
-          ½ teaspoon ancho chile pepper, ground (or more/less to taste
-          ½ teaspoon roasted cinnamon
-          ½ cup of sugar
-          12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
-          White Chocolate Candied Ginger Crème Anglaise (recipe follows)
-          1 can of sour cherries, mostly drained but save some of the liquid for garnishing the plate
-          Gold leaf foil
 
Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 350° F.
Grease or spray two 12-cup muffin tins with vegetable or canola oil (You can also use just one tin and bake the batter in two batches.) Wipe out excess oil with a paper towel. Set the tin aside.
 
Melt softened butter in a large bowl set over a saucepan of hot water (bain marie or double boiler) over very low heat. As the butter is melting, grate the chocolate or chop it into small shards with a chef’s knife or a serrated knife. (It’s easiest if you begin at a corner, particularly if the chocolate is very thick. Take it slowly and keep your fingers safe.) Once the butter has melted, place the chopped chocolate in the abin marie and allow the chocolate to melt slowly, stirring until the mixture is smooth and the chocolate is completely incorporated. Remove the bowl from the hot water and set aside.
 
In a separate bowl, gently whisk the whole eggs, egg yolks, sugar, cinnamon, chile powder, and flour. Mix until all of the ingredients are well incorporated.
 
Slowly temper the sugar/egg mixture into the chocolate/butter mixture, stirring vigorously until well combined.
 
Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins, filling each cup three-quarters full. Bake for 11 to 12 minutes if using the muffin tins, bake 18 to 20 minutes if making one large 9-inch round cake. The edges will have just begun to pull away from the pan, and the top of each budino should still look moist and shiny at the centre. Remove tins from the oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes. While the tins are still warm, place a baking sheet over the top of each muffin tin and invert it. Carefully lift the muffin tin to release cakes. Transfer the cakes to a serving platter or individual dessert plates. Budino is at its best if served warm, but is also delicious at room temperature. Serve with warmed candied ginger white chocolate crème anglaise poured over the top, some sour cherries around the base of the cake, as well as right on top, and sprinkle with some gold leaf foil as a garnish.
 
Ingredients for Candied Ginger White Chocolate Crème Anglaise:
 
-          1 tablespoon candied ginger, finely chopped
-          ¾ cup heavy cream
-          4 oz high quality white chocolate bar, broken into squares
-          3 large egg yolks
-          2 tablespoon sugar
 
In a small, heavy saucepan bring, cream, white chocolate, and candied ginger just to a simmer over low heat, about 10 minutes. Do not bring to a boil.
 
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whist together yolks and sugar until smooth and evenly combined. Add hot cream mixture little by little, whisking continuously, then transfer custard mixture back to a saucepan.
 
Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, about 5 minutes. Can be prepared ahead and refrigerated/covered, but bring to room temperature before serving.
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