10 May 2010
JUNE 2010 - CHILLI AND CHOCOLATE
The theme of Chilli and Chocolate for this month's cook-out meant we were certain to CookEl's starters of Cauliflower and Green Chilli Pakoras set the tone for the evening. Crisp, golden batter studded with kalonji seeds enclosing the steaming, sweet florets of cauliflower were outstanding. The similarly treated green chillies were just as tasty and had a hint of smokiness and a decent bite and heat which were perfectly tempered by the zingy yogurt of the accompanying raita. SUPERB!
Next came the Poussins in Cacao. These were received well (?) and despite the generous portions, all that remained was a pile of carcasses-which can only mean they pleased the discerning diners who were probably a little unsure of the flavour profiles used in the marinade and basting sauce. I think Willie would be proud ;-)
CookA's task was to come up with appropriate sides/vegetables which given the chose ingredients required considerable forethought. She attempted a tamale of corn meal and spinach which must be credited-its not easy to cook something you've never even seen or eaten before. The honeyed, roasted pumpkin wedges and crispy potatoes turned out to be the perfect foil to the slightly bitter richness of the poussins.
Never to be outdone-CookB presented us with beautiful poufs of Chocolate Souffle, for which she had also slow-roasted some new season Quinces in butter and honey and whipped up a glossy, rich and moreish sauce of chocolate with a hint of chilli. DIVINE.
CookN finished the night off with little steaming cups of Hot Chocolate (again, using some more of the Venezuelan Black cacao and fresh, WA produced Banister Downs Milk) scented with ginger, cinnamon and other spices. GORGEOUS.
Our newest member-CookV could not be with us but kindly found some time to whip up a delectable batch of Chilli Chocolate & Caramel Slice - they were perfect! Firm but yielding layer of dark chocolate infused with a subtle but definite heat atop a gooey, buttery caramel and toothsome (read perfect) biscuit base. Thank you and WELCOME!!
*sigh* Were we 'chocolated' out? Not me.