Black Forest Brownies, made with Oude Meester Reserve 12-Year-Old Brandy

  • 550g bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 225g unsalted butter
  • 2 x 400g tins black cherries
  • 500g sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 150ml Oude Meester Reserve 12-Year-Old
  • 200g flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 125ml liquid glucose


For the chocolate ganache:

  • 2 tsp instant coffee granules
  • 250ml cream
  • 250g milk chocolate, chopped


For the vanilla ice cream:

  • 500ml milk
  • 500ml cream
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 12 large egg yolks


Preheat the oven to 150 C. Line a square pan with greaseproof paper. Melt the chocolate together with the butter in a double boiler. Drain and chop the cherries, retaining the juice for the sauce. Whisk the sugar and eggs together. Whisk in the melted-chocolate mixture and add 50ml of the brandy. Mix in the flour, salt and baking powder. Gently mix in the cherries. Spread into the prepared pan. Bake for about 30 -35 minutes. Leave to cool in the pan. Once cool, cut into squares.

To make the chocolate ganache:
Add the coffee granules to the cream and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk chocolate. Refrigerate until firm.

To make the vanilla ice cream:
Bring the milk and cream to the boil with the scraped vanilla pod. In a separate bowl, combine thoroughly. Return to the heat and stir over a medium heat until the mixture begins to thicken. Do not let the mixture boil. Remove from the heat and immediately pour into a large stainless-steel container. To cool quickly, whisk over a bowl of ice and water. Once cooled, pour into an ice-cream machine and churn until frozen.

To assemble the brownies:
Pour the remaining brandy into a hot saucepan and flambé. Add the cherry juice and reduce by half. Add the liquid glucose and whisk until the glucose has dissolved. Remove from the heat and leave to cool. When sauce and brownies are both cool, remove the ganache from the fridge, whisk it until thick and use to frost each square of brownie. Garnish with cherry sauce, vanilla ice cream and chocolate shavings, and serve immediately.
Makes about 12 brownies.

Enjoy this recipe with one of South Africa’s best wines, go to wineofthemonth.co.za
  
Recipe by Peter Goffe-Wood of Cassia restaurant, taken from Fire Water: South African Brandy.