When you have a baby, life becomes a series of firsts. The first time they smile, the first time they roll over, the first time they sleep through the night!
We had our first weekend away with Sebastian last weekend. We headed down to Weymouth to cheer on my eldest brother, Alex, in his second Ironman. We followed Alex around the cycle course and cheered him on by the sea as he ran a marathon along the coast. It was an epic day out for the whole family and Sebastian battled through with very little sleep to see his Uncle cross the finish line at around 8pm. I was a very proud sister and chuffed to see him achieve such physical heights.
This coming week we’re adding to the list of firsts with out first family holiday.
I’ve been totally spoiled by the summer we’ve enjoyed in England over the past few months, what a great time to have a baby is all I can say. But there’s something lovely about getting away, seeing somewhere new and getting to enjoy some local food.
We’re boarding a horribly early flight on Monday morning and jetting off to Crete for 2 weeks for some quality family time in the sunshine. I’ve never had so little to do with a holiday before; my husband picked the destination and villa and has pretty much organized the whole thing. Long gone are the days when I have time to sit searching the internet for the perfect holiday destination. I can’t decide if I’ve enjoyed being hands off or not. The control freak in me is at a loss!
You can imagine the amount of stuff we’ve been buying in preparation for a holiday with a baby and no doubt we’ll take far too much! Let’s be honest, as long as he is fed and changed, he’ll be happy enough.
However, before the family holiday, I’ve got two nights to get through whilst Will is on a jolly at his best mate’s wedding in Toulouse. I’ve promised Will I’ll feed myself properly whist he’s away– I’m very lazy cooking for myself and will resort to salmon, avocado and eggs for dinner, whereas I’ll happily spend hours preparing a meal if I’m cooking for someone else.
I was thinking what treat I could have on Friday evening, not for the main course, but for pudding. As our regular dinners out are somewhat a thing of the past for the time being, I’ve been really missing out on having puddings and in particular one of my favourites, chocolate fondant.
So to add to my list of firsts, I decided to make chocolate fondant for the first time. Indulgent yes, but totally acceptable.
There are plenty of chocolate fondant recipes out there – some more fancy than others. But, I think on this occasion, simplicity is best and I found one that kept fussiness to a minimum. After all, all you want to achieve is oozy chocolate from the sponge!
They are quick to whizz together, although I think it would actually be easier making a larger batch of them. When you’re trying to fold in one egg white, it’s a bit more difficult I found.
The result was a light sponge with an oozy rich chocolate centre that you could mop up with the vanilla ice cream. What else is there to say? Melted chocolate and vanilla ice cream, it’s the perfect combination.
I think this might not be the last chocolate fondant I make…it could well be the first of many.
Chocolate fondant with vanilla ice cream
Taken from BBC website, recipe provided by James Martin
Serves 1 (it says two in the recipe, but this only filled one of my moulds)
For the fondant
1 medium egg, separated
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp cornflour
50g dark chocolate, melted either in the microwave or over a saucepan of simmering water in a bowl – make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water.
1 tbsp caster sugar
unsalted butter, for greasing the ramekins
cocoa powder, for dusting the ramekins
sprinkling of icing sugar for the baked fondants
For the chocolate sauce
3 tbsp hot water
1 tbsp caster sugar
50g dark chocolate
Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees and place a baking tray in the oven to heat up.
Butter your moulds and dust the insides with cocoa powder – shaking out any excess cocoa.
To make the fondant
Whisk the egg white until stiff and then fold in your flour and cornflour
In a separate bowl mix together your melted chocolate, sugar and egg yolk.
Mix one spoonful of the whisked egg white into the chocolate mixture, then add the rest of the egg white and fold gently together to keep the air in.
Spoon the mixture into the moulds, then bake in the oven for 8 minutes. Make sure you have your timer ready to press go and timing is everything! Too long and they’ll be cooked through. Too short and they’ll collapse when turned out.
To make the chocolate sauce (if you’d like the extra chocolate!)
Whilst the fondants are in the oven you can get on with your sauce. In a bowl mix the water, caster sugar and chocolate together.
Turn the fondants out onto a plate, garnish with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and spoon over some of the chocolate sauce. Sprinkle on some icing sugar to give a light dusting to the fondant.
Enjoy! I did!