Recipe of the week this week is courtesy of newspaper columnist and much–loved television baker Candice Brown who has just published her first book Comfort: Delicious Bakes and Family Treats.
"This is another handwritten recipe from my Nan. It was perfect the very first time I made it (that says it all really) and so was she. Feel free to change the fruit and nuts if you want, although why would you when it’s perfect the way she wrote it?" Candice Brown.
60g unsalted butter
170g golden caster sugar
30g plain flour
150ml double cream
115g flaked almonds
115g whole toasted almonds or pecans, roughly chopped
85g flaked coconut
85g dried apricots, chopped
60g dried cherries
200g dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids), broken into pieces
Preheat the oven to 170°C fan (190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5).
Melt the butter with the sugar in a saucepan over a low heat. When the sugar has dissolved and the liquid is golden and bubbling, add the flour and mix until smooth over a low heat. Remove from the heat and slowly add the cream, stirring the whole time until smooth and glossy.
Add the flaked almonds, chopped almonds or pecans, coconut flakes, apricots and cherries and mix well until everything is combined and covered with the creamy mixture.
Line four baking sheets with greaseproof paper. Drop the mixture in heaped teaspoonfuls on to the greaseproof paper, ensuring there is about 2cm between each heap of mixture.
Place in the preheated oven near the top and bake for 12–15 minutes (switch the baking sheets around halfway through).
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3–4 minutes before transferring to a wire rack – use a flat palette knife to move the Florentines. Leave to cool completely.
Melt the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth. Coat the flat underside of each Florentine with chocolate and allow to set slightly before zigzagging a fork across the chocolate to make a pattern. Then leave chocolate-side up, to set completely.
Candice Brown will be one of the chefs headlining the demo stage on 9th September at the Ascot Festival of Food and Wine.
Ascot Festival of Food and Wine is from Thursday 7th – Sunday 10th September 2017.