"Why not?" the fat shopkeeper said, reaching behind him again and taking another Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delight from the shelf. He laid it on the counter.Charlie picked it up and tore off the wrapper... and suddenly... from underneath the wrapper... there came a brilliant flash of gold.Charlie's heart stood still.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl, The Miracle
In the past few weeks, I have spent an unreasonable amount of time saying the word 'Whipple-Scrumptious'. I think I have bored everyone within a three-mile radius of me with it but, I have to say, I was so excited that I just couldn't help it. In fact, I felt a bit like Willy Wonka himself.
I spent weeks dreaming up extraordinary creations, getting the texture of the ganache just right, playing around with just how much salt the caramel needed. I also did this knowing that this probably isn't the first recipe on this blog you'll try, that - in fact - you might never give it a go. It's expensive, time consuming and a bit tricky to get right. That said, it's also brilliantly rewarding, and no other recipe I've done on here (except, of course, the Pop Cakes) have offered quite the same sense of nostalgic satisfaction.
I don't know of any child (or nostalgia-ridden adult) who would be ambivalent about a trip to Wonka's wonderful chocolate factory. Everlasting Gobstoppers, lickable wallpaper, square sweets that look round, a chocolate room, complete with waterfall - what a dream. Even Dahl's odious characters: gum-chewing Violet Beauregarde, television obsessed Mike Teavee, spoilt Veruca Salt and gluttonous Augustus Gloop (and their parents) would be worth putting up with to get a glance inside. And running the place for the rest of my life? I think I could handle that.
Which brings me neatly to the bar in question. Dahl offers little description but, for a young boy who's been living on cabbage soup, I wanted to make the chocolate bar that changes his life a truly special one. I therefore tried to represent the name with some dream ingredients - a Whipple (whipped ganache)-Scrumptious Fudge (salted caramel fudge) Mallow (oozing marshmallow) Delight. I can't imagine that this will be the last of Wonka's creations I'll attempt to make, but this - the bar that gave Charlie his Golden Ticket - was the perfect place to start.
Before the recipe, a couple of little notes. The gorgeous wrapper that encircles these bars was made by my talented friend/honorary sister Anna. As well as being a dab hand with a scalpel and some purple cardboard, she's completely hilarious - check out her blog if you haven't already.
Finally, there is a strong possibility that next week's post will go up on my new website; I am migrating The Little Library Café over to a new host. You'll still be able to find me at thelittlelibrarycafe.com, but I would so appreciate if those of you who follow me via Wordpress would come on over to the new site next week and sign up for email updates. Those of you who already follow me via email will still receive emails; so if you'd like to sign up via email over the next week, please do so! I have loved engaging with all of you in the comments section here over the past year, and really look forward to continuing to do so. I've so enjoyed starting the blog off on Wordpress, and the opportunity it has given me to meet so many of you!
Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delight
Makes 12 bars
600g dark chocolate (70%)
100g dark chocolate
200ml double cream
Salted Caramel Sauce
110g caster sugar
45g salted butter (chopped into small pieces)
70ml double cream
1.5tsp flaked sea salt
2 egg whites
100g caster sugar
2tbsp golden syrup
Small heavy-bottomed saucepan
2 large heatproof bowl
Electric hand whisk
3 disposable piping bags
Silicone chocolate mould (I bought mine from eBay - each bar is 1.3cm deep, 10cm long and 4.5cm wide)
1. First, make the ganache. Place the chocolate, in small pieces, in a large heatproof bowl. Bring the cream almost to the boil in a saucepan, then pour over the chocolate. Allow to sit for a minute, then stir with a whisk until the chocolate is melted. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes, then cover with cling film and place in the fridge for an hour.
2. To make the fudge sauce, place the caster sugar in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Melt over a low-medium heat until the sugar has dissolved and the caramel has turned a dark, golden colour. Remove from the heat, whisk in the butter and then the cream. The mixture might separate a bit, but just continue to whisk. Pour into a separate bowl to cool. Add the salt, and stir.
3. Put the marshmallow ingredients in a large heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Whisk on a high speed for 5-6 minutes until the marshmallow forms strong peaks.
4. Pull the ganache (which should have solidified) out of the fridge and whisk it on a high speed for a couple of minutes until it is light and aerated. Scoop all three fillings into separate disposable piping bags and set them aside.
5. Next, temper 400g of the chocolate for the shells (if you have moulds for 12 bars - if you only have 6 moulds, as I did, temper half now and half later). Place 270g of this chocolate in the heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water, ensuring that the water doesn't ever touch the bowl directly. Stir the chocolate while it melts, keeping the heat as low as you can. Once the chocolate has melted, pay close attention to it and remove it from the heat once it has reached 52C. Remove the bowl from the heat and wrap the base in a tea towel to keep it warm. Add the remaining 130g of the chocolate and stir it in. Once melted, continue to stir until the temperature of the chocolate reduces to 32C.
6. Use the plastic spoon to transfer small amounts of the chocolate into each mould, and push it around until it covers the base and sides. Add more if you can still see the light through the chocolate when you hold it up to a window, and pay careful attention to the grooves, corners and sides. Set the chocolate aside on the bench (so long as it's a cool day and you don't have the heating on too high) until set.
7. Snip the tip off each piping bag, creating a half centimetre hole. Pipe a layer of the ganache into the each chocolate shell, and smooth with a palette knife. Pipe a strip of fudge sauce down the centre and then pipe a layer of marshmallow over the top. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes to solidify a little. While the bars are in the fridge, temper the rest of the chocolate for the base. Once the chocolate is tempered, spoon it over the marshmallow layer and, using a chocolate scraper or palette knife, flatten the back, ensuring the chocolate has gone right to the corners.
8. Return the bars to the fridge for half an hour, then turn them out. The silicone moulds are easier than metal, but long bars are a quite fiddly. I had the most success when holding the mould upside down over the edge of a table, and slowly peeling the silicone back. Wrap the bars in foil and store in the fridge if you're not eating them immediately - they do melt on a warm day!
ps. Any leftover filling is brilliant on ice-cream, and on nuts, and on fingertips or, as we discovered over Easter, squeezed directly from piping bag to mouth.