Chocolate Biscuit Cake
I’ve always found the idea of a no-cook cake or biscuit very seductive - it seems like instant indulgence for very little outlay of time or effort. However, I’ve always been disappointed by the results of recipes I’ve tried - the product always seemed sickly sweet to me, or overly greasy, or often, both. I think these results follow from the ingredients usually used to give the correct consistency - butter and golden syrup are commonly used. The ratio of butter and/or golden syrup to chocolate has to be fairly high to get something that isn’t rock hard.
So I’ve decided to take a completely different tack, and used evaporated milk. This has the advantage of having neither a terribly high fat content (at least compared with butter), or being overly sweet (it only has the sugars naturally present in milk). I think the taste and texture is rich without being cloying, and I find it keeps well for at least a week in the fridge. I’ve designed the recipe to be edible straight from the fridge, but if you want a really soft texture, you might want to leave it out for half an hour before serving it. It is still a bit of an indulgence, so I suggest treating it more like a sweet than a cake, and cutting it into very thin slices.
240g dark chocolate
170g evaporated milk
140g amaretto cookies
100g roasted skinned hazelnuts, plus 24 extra whole ones for decoration (if you can’t buy roasted hazelnuts, you can buy whole hazelnuts, but these will need to be skinned and roasted - for a description of how to do this, look at my recipe basic recipe for praline).
1 2lb loaf tin, lined with greased baking paper will be needed to mould the cake.
The amaretto cookies and hazelnuts will need crushing, so a food processor would be useful. However, if you don’t have one, it isn’t a problem provided you’re prepared to do a little extra hard work, using a plastic bag and a rolling pin or something similar.
Set the chocolate to melt by placing it in a heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Meanwhile, crush the amaretto cookies very finely, and chop the roasted hazelnuts finely. Once the chocolate has completely melted, mix in the evaporated milk, and the crushed cookies and chopped nuts. Pour into the lined loaf tin, cover, and place in the fridge to set. It should be set within about an hour.
The cake makes about 20 thin slices (less than ½” thick) so each portion contains about 130 kcals, and about 9g of fat. Don’t blame me if you can’t make yourself stop at a single slice!