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Milk chocolate passion fruit pots

18 November 2019

One of the things I love about baking in the winter is the plethora of tropical fruits that come to market. In late summer and early autumn we have a heady abundance of local fruits to chose from, but by mid-November, the gluts have finished and we must look further afield for brightness in the kitchen.

Imported from Asian and the Middle East, passion fruits rich, almost yolky fruit offers a pukka-worthy tang of the acidic alongside its signature tropicana flavour. I love to pair passion fruit with milk chocolate, as the velvety texture of the cocoa counter-balances the sharpness beautifully. 

The vast majority of the chocolate consumed in the UK is, of course, also made from imported produce. East London-based Cocoa Runners, who champion small batch chocolates, very kindly sent me some of their new cooking chocolate range to try out in this recipe. Working closely with producers who source beans directly from the farmers, for their first cooking chocolate Cocoa Runners has works with Madagascan chocolatiers Menakao, one of the few companies who make their bars at source using only local ingredients. Unfortunately, this is rare – it’s estimated that less than 5% of the world’s chocolate is produced in the same country the cocoa is grown. By making the chocolate in Madagascar in addition to growing the cacao on the island, Menakao generate about 4-5 times the benefit of Fair Trade for the local Madagascan economy.

Following the same bean-to-bar ethos, the small size of the pistoles means they’re perfect for baking, as they melting quickly and consistently when heated. This is perfect in this recipe, which is ganache-based. These are so quick to do and can be made ahead, and are the perfect winter dessert for parties large or small. 

150g milk chocolate (I used Cocoa Runners 44% single origin cooking chocolate)
120g double cream
50g whole milk
3 passion fruits, ripe and wrinkled
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling

Halve two of the passion fruit and scoop the seeds and pulp into a blender. Blitz, then strain the juice into a saucepan (discarding the seeds). Add the cream, milk and fine sea salt. Set over a medium heat and bring to the boil. While the cream is heating, weigh the chocolate and place in a heat-proof bowl. If you are using a bar, you will need to finely chop it. 

Once the cream is bubbling, remove from the heat and pour over the chocolate. Leave it alone for 5-10 minutes to allow the cream to fully melt the chocolate. Once the time has passed, stir the mixture to bring it into a smooth ganache. 

Cut into the final passion fruit, and use a tea spoon to dot some fresh pulp and seeds into the bottom of your glasses or ramekins. Fill with the milk chocolate ganache, then top with a little more fresh passion fruit and a sprinkling of flaky sea salt. 

Place in the fridge to set for at least an hour before serving. 

I was gifted the chocolate used in this recipe by Cocoa Runners, but all views are - as always - my own. 

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