In researching recipes for my Croatian category I stumbled upon a great travel blog written and photographed by Zürich-based Kerrin Rousset. The Croatian category on her site MyKugelhopf drew me in and reminded me how much I loved travelling around Croatia on my only visit almost ten years ago. Kerrins travels through Istria, the northern region, took her to many gorgeous places and in particular her long lunch in the small fishing village of Banjole prompted me to make one of the things she had for dessert after a sumptuous lunch at a local family-run restaurant called Batelina.
I desperately want to go there to sample the seafood-heavy menu but in the meantime I can just replicate one of the sweets the very lucky Kerrin got to try. As for Batelina, I’m already mentally planning a trip back to Croatia for 2014 and this restaurant is on my radar.
The recipe for these chocolate chilli nibbles was created by David Skoko, fisherman and chef at Batelina. Chocolate and chilli is a great combination and I added a little Frangelico to the chocolate sauce as well. A good dollop of double cream wouldn’t go astray either.
Preheat oven 170°C.
Butter 16 x 5cm pastry tins and dust with cocoa powder. Alternatively place mini muffin liners in muffin trays.
Remove the stem from the chillies, cut in half lengthways and remove the seeds. Finely chop and place in a small saucepan with the 300 g chocolate and butter. Melt gently over low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
Beat the eggs and gradually stir them into the chocolate mixture. Gradually add the flour, cornflour, baking powder and salt. Add the cocoa powder and oil and mix well until smooth. Pour batter into prepared tins and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until just cooked.
To make the chocolate sauce: break the reserved 100g chocolate into a microwave safe jug, pour over the cream and microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir well, add the Frangelico and stir again.
Serve warm, drizzled with olive oil and chocolate sauce.