Saturday, 5 December 2009

Torrone Molle

I haven't shared a recipe for a while. Someone asked about chocolate biscuit cake being hard to cut recently, and it reminded me of this recipe from Elizabeth David's Italian Cookery which was the chocolate biscuit cake I grew up on. I can remember making it for me brother's birthday when he was maybe 8 or 9. So I made one for the weekend, since we have a friend coming over later on.

Torrone Molle
6 ounces each cocoa, butter, castor sugar, ground almonds, Marietta biscuits. 1 whole egg and 1 yolk.
Beat the butter and cocoa together till it is a soft paste, then stir in the ground almonds. Melt the sugar in a heavy-based pan over low heat with a little water - you're trying to melt it rather than dissolve it. Add to the cocoa mixture. Stir in the the egg and yolk, beating them together first, and then stir in the broken biscuits carefully.
Press into a round tin (about a 20cm diameter, I think) and chill. It is even better the day after you have made it.
According to the recipe this serves 6 people - I think it's more like 10, as it is very rich.
I'm sorry I don't have this in cup measurements - C couldn't believe how much cocoa there was as he watched me sifting it. I had to settle for regular Rich Tea biscuits - time wasn't on my side yesterday, and of the three shops I tried near work, only one of them even had Rich Tea. I am sure it will still taste good.

To go with it, I've made my chicken risotto, loosely based on a recipe from the same book. You take the skin off half a chicken and cut the flesh into thin long strips. Cook a thinly sliced onion in some olive oil and butter over a low heat till soft. Add the chicken, a thinly sliced red pepper and a couple of sliced tomatoes. Stir for a few minutes, then add a cup of white wine. Add enough water to cover everything, herbs to taste (I usually use bay and thyme, as I can pick them fresh from the garden, and peppercorns), cover and simmer over a very low heat for at least an hour. Use the liquid from this, and more water as required, to make risotto in the regular way, adding the chicken and vegetables about a quarter of an hour before the end, to give them time to warm through. For once I even had some white wine handy - often I just use some sherry instead.

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