Tag Archives: Pralin

Lamingtons

It was Australia day yesterday and since quite a lot of you dear readers are from down under, I thought of paying tribute to your beautiful country by baking one of the most typical Australian cakes: the Lamingtons. Named after Lord Lamington, governor of Queensland between 1896 and 1901, these little sponge cakes are cut in squares and dipped in a chocolate icing before being rolled in dessicated coconut. They are sometimes cut in half and filled with cream or jam. I chose a recipe from the Thermomix Australian recipe community but decided to add a French twist to these cakes: I filled them with a pralinoise and sprinkled them with a homemade pralin. I also tried icing them with dark chocolate thinned down with water but I ended up with not enough to go around all the cakes so I ended up using the cocoa icing from the recipe. I found the dark chocolate iced ones nicer though because they are less sweet…

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Source: Australian Thermomix recipe community

Ingredients

120 g sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp Vanilla Bean Paste
50 g unsalted butter, , melted
120 g Self Raising Flour

Lamington icing
25 g unsalted butter
160 g milk
500 g icing sugar
50 g Dutch processed cocoa
Shredded coconut to coat

Pralinoise:

80g praliné paste
80g milk chocolate

Pralin:

200g hazelnuts
120g water
40g sugar

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C
  2. Butter and line a 20cm square dish (I used a silicon mould with a chocolate bar pattern on it, which made it quite easy to cut the squares afterwards. Unfortunately, these moulds are only sold through demonstration in France/Belgium and US).Lamingtons_002
  3. Place sugar into mixing bowl and mill 10 sec/speed 10.
  4. Add eggs and insert the Butterfly whisk.
  5. Whip eggs for 7 min/50C/speed 3.
  6. Add butter and vanilla paste/extract and mix 5 sec/speed 4.
  7. Remove Butterfly whisk. Add flour and with dial set to Closed Lid Position mix for 10 sec/ kneading button. Finish mixing with spatula by hand if necessary.
  8. Pour into prepared tin, spin to level and bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until golden and springy to touch. Cool for 5 minutes before turning out onto rack to cool completely.
  9. Freeze for 30 minutes before cutting.
  10. Meanwhile, make the pralinoise: place the milk chocolate in the TM bowl and mix 5 sec/speed 6. Melt 3 min/50C/speed 2, scrape down the sides and add more time if it’s not entirely melted.
  11. Add the praliné paste and mix 20 sec/speed 4. Tip out and reserve.
  12. Pralin: roast the hazelnuts on a baking tray in the hot oven (180C) for 8 minutes.
  13. Leave to cool and rub them to remove the skins.
  14. Place the water and sugar in a medium saucepan. Boil until the syrup reaches 120C.
  15. Take out of the heat and add the hazelnuts to it.
  16. Stir with a wooden spatula until the sugar starts crystallising and place back on the high heat and stir continuously until all the sugar caramelises.
  17. Pour onto a tray lined with silicon sheet or baking parchment and make sure to flatten the hazelnut mixture. Leave to cool and break in pieces.
  18. Place in the TM bowl and mix 4 to 5 sec/speed 6 or until cut in small chunks. Set aside.
  19. Icing: place butter and milk into mixing bowl and cook 2 min/80 C/speed 2.
  20. Add sugar and cocoa and blend for 20 – 25 sec/speed 4.
  21. Trim sides of sponge. Cut in half horizontally and spread the pralinoise over one half. Place the second half on top and cut cake into 16 equal sized cubes.Lamingtons_001
  22. Place on a wiring rack on top of a plate to catch drips.
  23. Pour icing over the cake squares, trying to coat them evenly. Scoop some of the icing from the plate underneath back onto the cakes until they are coated all over.
  24. Transfer to flat tray lined with baking paper. Repeat until all are covered. Sprinkle with some pralin and allow icing to set before serving. You should have some pralin left, why not use it in those wonderful Iles flottantes?

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Ile flottante au pralin

Iles flottantes are a French classic. They are made of egg whites, whisked and poached in simmering milk, then the milk is used to make a custard and the egg whites are placed on the custard where they look like islands. In this version, which I got from my friend Ottoki from the Supertoinette forum, the egg whites are not poached but cooked in the oven for 3 minutes and then coated with pralin (a mixture of hazelnut and almonds toasted in caramel and chopped in a food processor). The pralin adds a crunchy texture to this creamy and fluffy dessert, it’s absolutely delightful!

Source: Aux petits bonheurs d’Ottoki

Ingredients

Custard

8 egg yolks
60g sugar
500g milk
1 vanilla pod

Egg whites

180g egg whites (about 6 egg whites)
80g sugar

Pralin

150g hazelnuts
150g almonds
300g sugar

Method

  1. First, make the pralin: heat a frying pan and add the nuts and fry for 5 minutes. leave to cool for 5 minutes.
  2. Heat the pan again and add the sugar and nuts and trying not to stir the pan too much, cook until the sugar becomes caramel (be careful not to burn the sugar otherwise it will be bitter). Tilt the frying pan often to spread the heat evenly around.
  3. When all the sugar has turned golden in colour, turn off the heat and quickly pour the content onto a silicone mat or a marble slab, spreading a bit with a spatula to have an even layer. Leave to cool for one hour (you can go ahead and make the custard and whisk the whites in the meantime).
  4. When the caramelised nuts have cooled, break them into pieces (I put them in a clean tea towel and bashed them with a rolling pin).
  5. Put the pieces in the TM bowl and mix 5 sec/speed 8. Check the mixture, it should be like coarse breadcrumbs (I overdid mine and they were too powdery so try not to mix too long).
  6. Tip out into a tupperware box, you will only use a little bit for the iles flottantes but pralin keeps very well and can be used in a great variety of recipes (if you use the same amount of dark chocolate, mixed in your Thermomix with the pralin, you will get praliné, which is used in cakes or chocolates).
  7. To make the custard: place the egg yolks and sugar in the TM bowl with the butterfly whisk. Mix 1 min 30 sec/speed 2. Meanwhile, place the bowl that will hold the custard in the freezer.
  8. Remove the butterfly wisk and add the milk until it reaches the 1/2 litre marking. Scrape out the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the milk. Cook 8 min/80C/speed 4. Then mix 2 min/speed 1. Mix again 1 min/speed 2.
  9. Pass the custard through a sieve (I didn’t do it) and pour into the frozen bowl. Cover with cling film and refrigerate.
  10. Thorougly clean the TM bowl and butterfly whisk and dry them with a tea towel.
  11. Preheat the oven at 180C.
  12. To make the egg whites: add the egg whites and sugar. Whisk for 10 min/speed 3, measuring cup OFF.
  13. Either use a semi-sphere silicone mould brushed with oil or scoop the egg whites (using an ice cream scooper for instance) onto a tray lined with greaseproof paper.
  14. Bake for 3 minutes in the oven (no more!) and leave out to rest at room temperature.
  15. Roll them in the pralin and place on top of the custard.
  16. Pour some liquid caramel on top: it’s heavenly!