Saturday, 22 May 2010

Rocky Road Crunch Bars

Nigella Lawson is probably my favourite celebrity chef, and considering I've only watched a total of one of her cooking shows, it is probably a rather high and rash accolade to give out willy nilly but I have good reason for it so hear me out. Her book, 'How to be a Domestic Goddess' has earned her the praise all on it's own! I've tried a few recipes from it and they have all been incredible. The difference between good cooking and Mmmmm I can't-stop-eating-long-enough-to-compliment-you cooking is in the flavours. You can make a perfectly pleasant lemon cake or you can make a lemon cake Nigella stylie with ground almonds instead of flour, which you make three days before you serve it and wrap in foil in the interim to give a moist cake full of lemon flavour with a waft of something familiar which you can't quite place and then you do; hmm it tastes a bit like marzipan. 'A fusion of flavours' was the review from my friend Anna.

Anyway, back to the Rocky Road. They have been adapted from Nigella's 'Nigella Express'. And while I love these Rocky Road Crunch Bars (which I've made at least three times), I don't think the recipes in this book are as flavourful as some of her others. But considering the premise of this book is 'Good Food Fast', I think it's understandable.

These are very easy to whip up for a snack or desert and perfect for children's parties (so long as you remember you have to refrigerate them for at least 2 hours) so give them a go, and let me know how you get on!


125g soft butter
150g dark chocolate, 150g milk chocolate (Nigella's recipe: 300g best-quality dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids) broken into pieces
3 x 15ml tablespoons golden syrup
200g biscuits - mix Rich Tea and Digestive and Caramelised biscuits (Nigella uses Rich Tea only)
100g mini marshmallows
2 teaspoons icing sugar for dusting

1 - Melt the butter, chocolate and golden syrup in a heavy-based saucepan. (I always melt chocolate in a Pyrex bowl which I place in a wok, half filled with water and put on a medium heat on the burner) Scoop out about 125ml of this melted mixture and put to one side.
2 - Put the biscuits into a freezer bag and then bash them with a rolling pin. You are aiming for both crumbs and pieces of biscuits
3 - Fold the biscuit pieces and crumbs into the melted chocolate mixture in the saucepan, and then add the marshmallows.
4 - Tip into a foil tray (24cm square); flatten as best you can with a spatula. Pour the reserved 125ml of melted chocolate over the marshmallow mixture and smooth the top.
5 - Refrigerate for about 2 hours or overnight
6 - Cut into 24 fingers and dust with icing sugar by pushing it gently through a tea strainer or small sieve

Bakers Notes:
 - This allegedly makes 24, I say it makes more like 12 small pieces.
 - I use a mix of biscuits because I love caramelised biscuits and jumped at the chance to use them in a recipe. Nigella suggests Rich Tea so I use those too. And my friend Ben makes spectacular Rocky Road using Digestive biscuits so I also use those. I think using three different types of biscuits adds a little somethin' somethin'.
 - Nigella's recipe only uses 70% cocoa solids dark chocolate; I use a mix of dark chocolate and milk and my dark chocolate usually has about 50% cocoa solids. I think her way tastes good too but I personally think it's a bit highbrow for rocky road, I like mine to taste creamy as well as chocolatey and the only way to achieve this is to throw in some milk chocolate!


MsAfropolitan said...

I'm not a fan of her pseudo-sexual cooking programme, but I must say she seems to be a maestro in da kitchen ;)

As do you! Yummeeee!

Onada - Fashion and Photography said...

ohh yum!!!

1511th said...

I think I need youto make these for me.... i need it.

I also need to get How to be a Domestic Goddess asap! I dont have it

Vickii said...

@MsAfropolitan I totally agree with you, I've only watched her show once and I couldn't understand why she was on tv - it just seemed very forced and staged. I don't think she's a sensual cook, she's a sexy woman who tried to transfer that to her cooking.

@Onada Lol, thanks!

@1511th Check out Amazon, I'm sure you can buy the book from one of the marketplace sellers for about a fiver. You know how I just gave you the recipe and a step-by-step, that means you can now make rocky road for yourself ;p Don't worry when you invite me round AND cook for me, I'll bake for you ... deal?

Chic Therapy said...

have you thought of your food passion as a business venture?

Nicole Peterson said...

So happy I found your blog. I feel like I have found a kindred spirit!

Vickii said...

@ Chic Therapy: Hopefully one day, that's the plan :D

@ Nicole: Thank you! I love your blog too!

simplychic said...

yum!!! i must try.

paperheart♥ said...

those look amazing. I am def. gonna try making some.