This Eton mess style of dessert is an unusual recipe which is a brilliant dinner party talking point. Chocolate and raspberry is a great combination that Lizzy loves, and is ultimately enhanced by the flavours of the fennel.

You might be wondering about the fennel in this recipe, but it can have a liquorice taste which has been used in deserts for years. The fennel is also a great talking point with your friends and family as the concoction of flavours will leave your guests wanting the recipe!

When purchasing fennel, look for small, blemish-free bulbs that are pale green, firm and tightly packed, which indicates crispness and freshness. Smaller and younger bulbs are tender and better for cooking.

 

Ingredients – Serves 4

  • 700g dark chocolate
  • 400ml whipping cream
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 fennel bulb

 

  • 4 gelatine leaves
  • 1 punnet of raspberries
  • 500g caster sugar
  • 100g plain flour

Method:

1. Divide the dark chocolate into 100g, 200g, 100g, 100g and 200g.

2. Separate the eggs, place 100g of dark chocolate over a pan of simmering water in a bowl until melted.

3. Take the ½ egg whites and whisk with 200g of caster sugar until stiff, fold in the dark chocolate and spread over a baking tray with parchment.

4. Place in the oven at 100 degrees for 6 hours until dry and crisp.

5. Place 4 raspberries in the freezer.

6. In a pan place ½ the cream and add 100g of finely chopped fennel, bring to the boil and add the gelatine leaves, leave to infuse stirring to make sure the gelatine is fully dissolved.

7. Strain the liquid removing the fennel and then place the liquid in the fridge for 6 hours to firm up.

8. Melt the 200g of dark chocolate over the simmering water again and whisk the remaining cream until firm, mix together pouring the chocolate into the cream.

9. Take 200g of caster sugar and cover with 100g of water bring to the boil and pour over the egg yolks slowly whisking constantly this will create a sabayon.

10. Once you have a ribbon in the yolks (the whisk leaves a trail) pour this over the chocolate cream mix and fold together leave to set in the fridge.

11. Melt the 100g of chocolate and mix the plain flour, 100g caster sugar and egg whites.

12. Whisk all together and place into a baking tray lined with parchment bake at 180 for 10-15 minutes.

13. To make the sorbet take the remaining sugar, fennel and raspberries (reserve 1 fresh raspberry each) bring to the boil with equal quantity of water and then blend and freeze.

14. While it is freezing keep whisking it to break up the ice crystals.

15. To serve place all the ingredients in an organised mess on the plate, braking the fennel cream and sponge, place a scoop of sorbet and chocolate mousse on the plate and finally brake the chocolate meringue and frozen raspberries on top, finish with fresh grated dark chocolate.