This recipe is an absolute sparkler – although there are a
few fiddly stages to it, it’s not actually as tricky as it might look, and if
you need something impressive for a dinner party, this will definitely do the
job. It comes out looking like an elegant homemade version of a Viennetta, with
rich layers of white chocolate ice cream interspersed with thin sheets of dark
chocolate to counteract the sweetness. It’s inspired by a recipe from Green &
Black’s Ultimate Chocolate Recipes, a must-have for any dedicated chocoholic –
click here to find out more about the book.
(depending on how generous your slices are)
First of all, line two big baking trays with greaseproof
paper, and line a loaf tin with two layers of clingfilm. Pop the loaf tin into
the freezer while you do the rest (this will eventually be your ‘mould’ for the
finished ice-cream cake). Bear in mind that the finished article will need to
go in the freezer for at least 6 hours – more if you want to be absolutely sure
that it’ll come out with no problems – so you need to leave plenty of time
before you want to serve this.
Melt the dark chocolate in the microwave, but take it out
before it’s become completely liquid, while there are still a few solid pieces
in the middle. Stir well until these last bits have melted – this is a cheat’s
way of ‘tempering’ the chocolate, which doesn’t affect the taste, but makes it
shinier and gives it more of a snap once it’s been cooled and re-formed. Divide the chocolate between the two baking
trays and spread it out well with a spatula, to make a thin layer with no holes
– do this as quickly as you can, so that it doesn’t start cooling while you’re
spreading, otherwise you can end up with lumps. Pop the baking trays in the
fridge for at least 30 minutes. Bear in mind that chocolate is quite prone to
taking on flavours from other things so if you have any strong cheese, for
example, in the fridge, it might be a good idea to take it out while the
Next, make the white chocolate ice cream – this is a pretty
simple method, and if you don’t have an ice cream maker, this is a great way to
do it. You can add other flavours such as peppermint if you want to experiment.
First, melt the white chocolate with 150ml of the cream. Set this aside to
cool, and whip all the rest of the cream until it’s just holding its shape – in
other words, until you can create a soft peak with a spoon which doesn’t melt
away. If you’re using an electric mixer, keep a close eye on the state of the
cream because it will very suddenly pass this point and become really stiff.
Once the white chocolate mixture is cool, mix in the whipped cream.
Finally, separate the eggs – you only need the whites for
this recipe (if you want to use up the yolks, how about carbonara for dinner?).
Be very careful not to get any yolk into the whites, because this will stop
them whipping properly. Add the icing sugar to the whites and then whisk
thoroughly until you have a fluffy mass that is light enough not to fall out
when you turn the bowl upside down. This can be a scary thing to do for the
first time – so tip the bowl slowly, and see if the whites move at all. You
should eventually be able to turn the bowl completely upside down – when you
get to this point, stir it into the cream and white chocolate mixture. Make
sure that you don’t stir it all too much, just enough to combine it all, so
that you don’t stir all of the air out of the whipped cream and beaten egg
Once your dark chocolate has completely solidified, take the
baking trays out of the fridge and carefully peel the chocolate off the
grease-proof paper. You need to break it into pieces, so don’t worry about
cracking it, but try not to handle it too much because you’ll leave
Take your lined loaf tin out of the freezer, and spoon a
quarter of the white chocolate mixture into the bottom of the tin, spreading it
out into an even layer. Cover with pieces of dark chocolate, and repeat until
you’ve run out. Once you’re finished, cover the whole thing with more clingfilm
and pop it into the freezer, making sure that the tin is level while freezing.
When you’re ready to serve, peel the clingfilm off the top
of the tin, and then tug gently on the clingfilm lining until you can feel the
ice cream cake loosening. Lay a plate upside down on top, and then carefully
turn the whole thing upside down so that the cake pops out onto the plate. There are a few quick & fabulous ways to present it so that it looks really sensational - in the summer, you could decorate it with raspberries or strawberries. For my version, I kept back a few of the dark chocolate shards and stuck them in the top, then dusted with cocoa powder.