With Valentine's Day fast approaching, this striking, delicious, yet easy to make 'No Bake' dessert is sure to go down a treat at a special Valentine's Day meal. Although ideally should be chilled before serving, if time is of the essence, the filling sets very quickly and can easily be served within half hour of being made.
Handy Tip – To reduce the fat content in this recipe, simply substitute full fat cream cheese for a lower fat alternative, and double cream for crème fraiche.
Also, if you want to reduce the sugar content or prefer a stronger chocolate flavour, use dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate (dark contains less sugar than milk chocolate).
Loose bottomed flan / pie tin
Mixing bowl – large
Small heatproof bowl
1. Grease an 8 inch / 21cm diameter shallow baking tin with butter.
2. Place digestive biscuits in a food processor (if available) or in a bag, (the ‘self seal’ types of sandwich bags available at supermarkets are great for this) seal or close the opening and use a rolling pin to roll back and forth over the bag until you have the desired size of crumb. A smaller crumb will help the base remain firm when cut.
3. Melt the butter and mix in the crumbs, stir really well ensuring all crumbs are coated with the butter. It should stick together like ‘wet sand’ when squeezed in your hands.
4. Press crumb mixture into base of the prepared baking tin and use the back of a spoon to gently level off and compress the surface.
NB It’s quite important to complete the next steps in the order listed. Firstly because the filling will cool and solidify quickly when the chocolate is added, so the cream will need to be ready to go quickly before the filling becomes to hard to stir. Do not add the whipped cream at the same time as the melted chocolate - the chocolate and cream cheese need lots of mixing, such over-mixing could ‘beat’ the air out of the whipped cream, which is needed to give the filling a ‘lighter’ texture.
5. Thoroughly mix the cream cheese and sugar together, put to one side.
6. Whisk the cream until it forms soft peaks (electric or hand whisk).
7. Melt the chocolate by microwaving on high for 20 second burts, stirring in between each burst. If not using chocolate chips, ensure the chocolate is broken into roughly equal size pieces for even melting).
8. Add the melted chocolate into the cream cheese mixture, stir until the colour is even.
9. Immediately fold in the whipped cream until the colour is even. If a marbled effect is required, stop mixing before the white of the cream and the brown of the filling are completely combined.
10. Pour onto the biscuit base, level off using a pallette knife and chill for 2/3 hours (ideally), however the filling will have solidified sufficiently to be able to decorate and cut after half an hour.
11. Top with strawberries (washed and thoroughly dried).