Chocolate, Ginger and Rice Pudding Balls

If rich indulgence is your thing, put an afternoon aside to make Martin Blunos' chocolate cream balls with a difference
By Martin Blunos
Chocolate, Ginger and Rice Pudding Balls
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Effort: hard

Ingredients

For the rice pudding

  • 1 vanilla pod, split
  • 100 g short grain rice
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 250 ml milk
  • 250 ml single cream
  • 2 tsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg

For the chocolate ganache

  • 200 g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 100 ml double cream
  • 2 tsp unsalted butter
  • 20 g preserved stem ginger, finely chopped

For the coating

  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 200 g plain flour
  • 400 g fresh white breadcrumbs

To serve

  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp stem ginger syrup, from the jar
  • sprigs mint

Method

1. For the rice pudding, preheat an oven to 180C/gas 4. Combine the vanilla pod with the rice, sugar, milk, cream and butter. Transfer to a baking dish and sprinkle with grated nutmeg.

2. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the milk has begun to simmer. Turn the heat down to as low as possible, 120C/gas 1/4, if you can, and continue cooking for 1½-2 hours, stirring occasionally.

3. Leave the rice pudding to cool before removing the vanilla pod. Transfer to the fridge and chill thoroughly. While the pudding is in the oven, make the ganache.

4. For the ganache, tip the chocolate into a small saucepan and combine with the cream and butter. Melt the chocolate, over a gentle heat, stirring occasionally. Stir in the chopped stem ginger.

5. Remove the pan from the heat, and leave on one side to cool and set - this mixture is known as a ganache. Shape into small balls, about the size of a small walnut. Transfer to the fridge to firm up for at least an hour.

6. Take a heaped dessert spoon of the cold rice pudding and wrap it around a ball of the chilled chocolate and ginger ganache. Repeat until you have used up all the ganache.

7. For the coating, dip each ball in flour, followed by beaten egg. Finally, coat each one in crumbs.

8. Heat a deep fat fryer half-filled with oil, to 180C. Fry the balls, in batches, until golden. They should be ready in 3-4 minutes.

9. Drain on absorbent paper, and dust with caster sugar mixed with ground ginger. Pile the ganache balls onto a plate and drizzle over a couple of tablespoons of ginger syrup from the jar. Decorate with mint leaves and serve straight away.

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