Sheer decadence

Raspberry and chocolate brownie, with a rich chocolate icing and whipped cream.

Celebration day as New Zealanders held The Auld Mug high above the crowds, with grins on their faces from ear-to-ear, how tired and exhilarated they must’ve been feeling.

The cup is over a metre high and weighs just under 15kg, so there would’ve been some tired arms by the end of the day’s parade through Auckland.

Woo-hoo! Aren’t we proud to be Kiwis, part of a great celebration and a moment in history.

Those of you that got up early to see the yachting, you may have been feeling some of the excitement that the rest of New Zealand was feeling on such a great win, and well deserved win this time around.

It’s a proud moment in New Zealand history to be a part of and showcase what a cool little country we are, and what we are capable of. On the back of that, a draw with the Lions was a shock for many, but perhaps a uniting way to end the Lions Tour to New Zealand.

The departing Lions fans will have smiles on their faces as they depart our shores for their homeland. Maybe that will encourage those who didn’t make the trip to travel here on the next tour.

There was possibly many a sore head to be had the following morning amongst the supporters of the All Blacks, at the surprise of the final score 15-15. Mixed emotions will be one way to describe how the New Zealand rugby fans would’ve been feeling the day after the test.

Happy Lions fans may be a bonus to our tourism industry long-term, as the cup remains in New Zealand. Phew!

Those of you who are managing to partake in dry July and abstaining from alcohol with all the celebrations going on around you, hats off to those sticking to their non-alcoholic beverages.

You will feel all the better for it in the long term, much clearer in the head, and more energised all-round.

Perhaps a challenging way to cruise through the month of July for some, but a triumph for those of you who can stick out the whole month if it is your beverage of choice.

Instead of celebrating with alcohol, why not celebrate with some decadent baking to feed the soul and nourish the body. In the cold winter days we are experiencing, a slice of rich, decadent cake could be the indulgence required as a winter warmer.

A little indulgence every now and again is okay.

Why not celebrate with a slice of decadent chocolate cake … hmmm.

With the compliments of Jane Logie, a medicinal herbalist, clinical nutritionist and chef from Methven.

Raspberry and
chocolate brownie – three ways
This is a relatively easy cake mixture to put together and have three different ways if desired. You can have it as a slice with your hot beverage, or indulge a little more and serve cold with a rich chocolate icing and whipped cream, or go one step further and have it as a winter dessert, warmed slightly, and served with chocolate ice-cream and warm chocolate sauce … delicious.

  • Raspberry and chocolate brownie cake

250g salted butter, cut into small cubes
300g soft brown sugar
250g 50% dark chocolate (chopped into pieces)
4 large eggs – No.7 (lightly beaten together)
1t vanilla bean essence
65g rice flour
140g almond meal
50g cocoa powder
250g frozen raspberries

– Set the oven to 175°C, rack in the middle of the oven, on bake.
– Line a 25 to 35cm cake tin with baking paper and cut the edges of paper if they go high up over baking tray, cut just above.
– Measure the butter, sugar and dark chocolate, and place in a medium pot and set aside.
– Crack the eggs into a bowl and add the vanilla essence, whisk together with a fork and set aside.
– Measure out the dry ingredients, rice flour, almond meal and cocoa powder, sieve into a medium-sized bowl and set aside.
– Set aside in a separate small bowl the measured raspberries. Now you’re all set to make the cake. It’s easier if all the ingredients are measured and ready to put together.
– Place the chopped chocolate mixture on a low heat, stir with a wooden spoon, until ingredients are melted through together. Then set aside. Allow to cool slightly.
– Place the whisked eggs and vanilla into the chocolate mixture, one egg measure at a time, whisking into the chocolate mixture thoroughly as you go, until all the eggs are blended into the chocolate mixture, and now resembles a glossy looking batter mix.
– Now sieve in the dry ingredients and whisk into chocolate mixture, until blended well.
– Stir half of the raspberries into chocolate mixture, gently fold through.
– Place the mixture into the cake tin and gently spread to edges and the corners of the tin.
– Scatter the remaining half of the raspberries on top of the cake mixture, where there looks to be no raspberries present in the chocolate mixture.
– Place in the oven on the middle shelf for 30 minutes. It may need a further five minutes for a firmer texture. To check if it is ready, press cake gently with fingers and it should spring back. Or use a skewer, if it comes out clean, take cake out of oven.
– Allow to cool completely before cutting.
– Cut into the desired portions, and serve as a cake, a sweet treat, or dessert. Store in the fridge and it will last up to a week.

Raspberry and chocolate brownie, with chocolate ice-cream and warm chocolate sauce.