A blast from the past

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Sweet delights

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My sister, my cousins and I all used to love getting a viennetta at the end of Sunday dinner so last Christmas I decided to make my own version of viennetta for old times’ sake. It is ridiculously easy to make but so decadent and, with some decoration, can be a real showstopper. I didn’t bother to make my own ice cream and instead bought good quality ice cream from the shops. It works just as well and means you have extra time to do all the other things you need to do in preparation for Christmas.

CHOCOLATE AND VANILLA VIENNETTA

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Ingredients:

500ml chocolate ice cream
500ml vanilla ice cream
100g dark chocolate

  • Line a loaf tin with cling film. I find it easiest to use a spot of butter to stick down the cling film.
  • Melt the dark chocolate and take the ice cream out of the freezer to soften.
  • Then it is all about layering. Spoon half of the chocolate ice cream into the bottom of the loaf tin and smooth out so that you get an even layer.
  • Next dip a pastry brush in the melted chocolate and brush a layer of chocolate on top of the ice cream making sure you brush right to the edges. The chocolate will harden as you brush it on but just keep dipping the pastry brush back in the melted chocolate and continue to paint on. You don’t need to be too neat and it doesn’t need to be a perfect even layer. You just need a thin layer to make sure you get the well known crunch of chocolate that is characteristic of a viennetta.
  • Repeat but this time add a layer of vanilla ice cream and then top with a layer of chocolate.
  • Repeat again but do a second layer of vanilla ice cream. Add more chocolate and then top with the remaining chocolate ice cream. So there will be two layers of chocolate ice cream on the outside and two layers of vanilla ice cream in the centre with each layer separated by a thin layer of chocolate. You will need to work quite quickly as the ice cream will start to melt.
  • Once you have finished, place the loaf tin back in the freezer to take shape. Remove when ready to serve. It really is a great desert and one which you can make in advance.

To assemble:

  • Take a large serving plate and tip the viennetta on to the plate. The cling film will likely still be attached to the ice cream so make sure you pull it all off.
  • For a bit of height, I decorated the viennetta with some chocolate shards. Simply melt some chocolate and pour a thin layer on to some greaseproof paper and leave to cool. Once cool, break into large pieces of varying sizes and shapes and then stick the edges into the top of the viennetta.
  • I also used gold chocolate transfers to add some variety and festive sparkle. Chocolate transfer papers are available from any specialist food/baking store and online. All you need to do is pour the melted chocolate on to the transfer paper. Leave to hardened and then peel off the transfer paper and the design will have transferred on to the chocolate. You can get all sorts of designs in different colours and they leave a lovely shine on the chocolate. Your guests will be in awe and little do they know how easy it is!

You can use any flavours of ice cream. Coffee and vanilla ice cream would work well with dark chocolate layers and chocolate covered coffee beans for decoration. Alternatively, strawberry and vanilla ice cream with white chocolate layers would be a nice version particularly in the Spring/Summer.

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The Author

I am a food lover with a passion for cooking and entertaining inspired by two very special grandmothers and a fabulous mum. I recently moved to London which has provided a plethora of new places, cultures and fascinations to stir up some underlying creativity. My hope is to share some cooking and entertaining ideas which I like and others seem to like too. I will also throw in the odd bit of Scottish flare to make sure I maintain my true braveheart roots. Hope you enjoy!

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