Chocolate Ganache with Pistachio Filo Pastry

James Tanner conjures a great combination of creamy chocolate, crisp pistachio pastry and French-style custard for a dramatic dinner party dessert
By James Tanner
Chocolate Ganache with Pistachio Filo Pastry
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Prep Time: 50 minutes plus 4 hrs chilling
  • Effort: medium


For the ganache

  • 1/2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 125 g dark chocolate
  • 125 g milk chocolate
  • 250 ml whipping cream
  • 1 tsp brandy
  • 1/4 tsp instant coffee

For the crème anglaise

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 120 g caster sugar
  • 500 ml milk
  • 1/2 vanilla pod, split

For the pistachio filo pastry

  • 200 g shop-bought filo pastry
  • 60 g chopped pistachio nuts, unsalted
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar


1. Prepare the tin for the ganache - lightly oil a 2.5cm deep baking tin, about 20 x15cm. Line the tin with a layer of plastic wrap.

2. Melt the dark and milk chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a pan of simmering water. Take care not to overheat the chocolate, otherwise it may separate.

3. Warm the brandy in a small saucepan and add the coffee granules. Stir to dissolve before adding the flavoured brandy to the melted chocolate. Leave on one side to cool.

4. Whip the cream until it begins to thicken, but doesn't quite hold its shape. Fold into the chocolate and brandy mixture.

5. Pour the chocolate mixture into the lined baking tin and chill for 4 hours, until it firms up.

6. For the pistachio filo, preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6. Stack all the filo pastry sheets on a kitchen counter, and cut into 7 x 12cm rectangles.

7. Brush around the edges of each rectangle with beaten egg. Sprinkle the pistachios over half the pieces and cover with another piece of filo pastry. Press down to seal both rectangles together.

8. Lay the pastry rectangles on a baking tray, dust with icing sugar and bake for 4 minutes, until golden. Cool slightly before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely

9. For the crème anglaise, whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a heatproof bowl until pale and creamy.

10. Bring the milk and vanilla pod to scalding point in a medium-sized saucepan. Take the pan off the heat, cover, and leave on one side for 10 minutes - this gives the vanilla enough time to infuse its flavour into the milk. Strain and pour the hot milk into the beaten egg and sugar mixture. Stir well to combine everything.

11. Return the custard to the rinsed out pan and stir over a low heat until it has lightly thickened and coats the back of a spoon. Cover and set aside for a few minutes while you start assembling the dessert.

12. To assemble the dessert, remove the ganache from the fridge, discard the plastic wrap, and cut into rectangles, 2cm smaller than the filo rectangles.

13. Drizzle a little crème anglaise on each plate. Cover with a layer of pistachio filo pastry, and top with chocolate ganache. Continue stacking up alternate layers of pastry and chocolate ganache to make 3 layers. Finish with a layer of filo, and dust the top with icing sugar. Spoon a little more crème anglaise around the plate and serve straight away.

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