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Beni Wild Harvest Chocolate & Mandarin Bombe

Serves 4

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To make this dish you will need some metal half-spheres with 8cm diameters.  You can either purchase these in a good kitchen shop, online or alternatively you can use small plastic bowls.  You will also need a small spray painting gun. You can find these at craft stores and Argos.

For the bombe
400g Beni Wild Harvest chocolate*
8 metal half spheres
A small packet of popping candy or chocolate crackle crystals (optional) – available online

For the chocolate spray
200g melted Beni Wild Harvest chocolate*
100g cocoa butter (available online) or you can use sunflower oil instead

For the ice cream
200g good quality vanilla ice cream
3 tbsp orange marmalade or orange jam (Bonne Maman do a very good version)

For the mandarin compote
4 mandarins, peeled and segmented (remove all the pith)
20g jam sugar
¼ of a vanilla pod (optional)

For the chocolate sauce
50g Beni Wild Harvest chocolate *
50g dark chocolate (50% cocoa solids)
100ml double cream
3 tbsp milk

* Beni Wild Harvest is a 68% cocoa solids chocolate from Bolivia. A tree is planted for every 100g bought, contributing to the replenishment of the Bolivian rain forest.  If you cannot find Beni Wild Harvest, you can use good quality dark chocolate with the same percentage of cocoa solids

Remove the ice cream from the freezer and allow to soften.  Fold in the orange marmalade or orange jam to create a ripple effect.

To make the bombe, melt the chocolate over a water bath (bain-marie) (you can also use a microwave) and then gradually cool over a bowl of iced water.  When the chocolate feels cool, using a pastry brush, brush the insides of the half spheres with the cooled chocolate and place into the fridge until firm.  Repeat this process (you might find that you have to re-heat the chocolate mixture in the bowl), adding a second coat and place into the fridge until required.

Next is the chocolate spray!  Melt the chocolate and cocoa butter (or oil) together over a bain-marie (you can also use a microwave) until very hot and mixed together.  Stir if necessary.  Pour the mixture into the spray gun ready for spraying.  Now you are ready to spray the chocolate spheres.  Remove the spheres from the fridge and gently ease the chocolate out of the moulds, placing flat side down onto a wire rack.  Ensure that you are covered – this may go everywhere!  Spray the exterior of the chocolate bombes.

To make the compote, put the segmented mandarins, jam sugar and vanilla into a heavy based saucepan and simmer gently until reduced.  This should take around 3 minutes.  When the mixture starts to thicken, take it off the heat and pass ¾ of it through a sieve to create the compote.  Put the other ¼ to one side.  Leave to cool.

To make the chocolate sauce, break up the Beni and dark chocolate and put the pieces into a bowl.  Then, put the double cream and milk into a saucepan, and bring to the boil, then pouring onto the chocolate.  Keep warm.

To serve
When you are ready to serve, balance 4 of the chocolate half spheres on 4 plates and place a ball of the rippled ice cream into each half.  Top with the mandarin compote and some of the whole segments and a pinch of popping candy or chocolate crackle crystals (optional) and close with the other chocolate half

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