We may not be guaranteed a white Christmas, but that’s all the more reason to bring the magic of a snowy white winter to life in the kitchen. These delicate coconut and chocolate pots perfectly capture the essence of Christmas food and will lend the festive table a touch of icy sparkle. As magnificent in taste as they are in appearance; this dish delivers an air of elegance and sophistication which delights & enchants on all levels. So give it a go and let me know how you get on!
This recipe is truly a symphony of contrasts. The dark chocolate richness of the cocoa brownies is set off beautifully by the brilliant white of coconut. The velvety smoothness of the syllabub is interrupted & heightened by the dense chewiness of cake. And the zing of Malibu coconut-rum lifts the sumptuous creaminess of the mousse. It’s a dish of perfect balance; for that reason I cannot praise it enough!
Because there’s no sugar or flour, this pudding is wonderful for diabetics, ketogenic-dieters, and those with an intolerance to gluten. And because they’re so simple to make, they’ll remove some of the ‘cooking pressure’ from your shoulders, and can be made well in advance. Given the frantic busyness of Christmas, this is a huge bonus to cook and kitchen alike!
Start by making the brownies. Measure 4oz of xylitol sweetener into a bowl. I always use xylitol in baking. In my experience, it’s the only sweetener which retains its sweetness once cooked; and its granular texture means that it behaves exactly like sugar in cake-recipes. Cream this with 4oz of unsalted butter, then mix in 2 beaten eggs. When smooth, fold in 2oz of ground almonds, 2oz of dessicated coconut, a half-teaspoon of baking-powder and 1oz of good quality cocoa. The texture should be a spreadable, if reluctant dropping-consistency.
Line a 9×7 inch baking-tray. Spread the mix so that it covers the bottom of the tray. Bake in a moderate oven for circa 20 minutes until the cake is resistant to the touch and springs back when pressed. I’d have a quick check after 15 minutes – the trays’ shallow depth and large surface area will mean this cooks quickly! Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
Meanwhile, prepare your coconut topping. This requires coconut milk and gelatine. People can often be a little shy of gelatine, as they think it’s fiddly and difficult to use. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Make sure you buy a good quality leaf gelatine; you’ll have no problems and quickly realise how easy it is!
Start by soaking gelatine leaves for 5 minutes in cold water. Four leaves will make a pint of mix. Once they’ve soaked, drain the water and squeeze out any excess liquid with your hand. Set a 1/4 pint of water on to simmer, with 3oz of sweetener. Once this is almost at the boil, remove from the heat and stir in your gelatine.
Empty a can of coconut-milk (400ml) into a jug and whisk until smooth. Add 3-4 tablespoons of tabletop-sweetener and a good glug of Malibu coconut rum. Pour your gelatine into this and whisk again, to incorporate all together.
Break your chocolate cake into bite-size pieces and arrange covering the base of your serving dishes. You can either use individual glass bowls as I have, or make a larger trifle in one big bowl. Sprinkle a further teaspoon of Malibu over each portion of cake, then ladle your coconut/gelatine mix over this until your reach the top of each bowl. If the sponge floats to the surface, don’t worry; this lends visual appeal and creates ‘texture throughout’. If you’d rather keep it classically ‘layered’, ladle on a little of the mix and set this in the fridge for 20 minutes first. After that you can top up the pots as above, but the set layer will keep the cake from rising up and give you a pretty ‘striped’ finish. It’s entirely up to you which effect you go for; I must admit that I chose the path of least resistance!
Place your bowls in the refrigerator to chill over night. In the morning, they’ll be beautifully set and luxuriously smooth! Decorate with a sprig of holly and some strands of orange zest for colour et voila! Your pots are complete. Simply take to the table and serve up with pride!
Be sure to keep reading for more festive recipes over the coming weeks! Check out The Low Carb Christmas for details.
Enjoy the festive season and thank you for reading,