Chewy chocolate chip cookies

280g (2 cups) plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
40g (1/3 cup) cocoa
250g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature, diced
185g (3/4 cup) caster sugar
150g brown sugar
2 large free range eggs, beaten
200g dark chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 180C (Fan forced 160C). Line two baking trays with baking paper. Sift the flour, baking powder, cocoa and a pinch of salt into a bowl.

Beat the butter and sugars with hand-held electric beaters until pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, a little at a time, alternating with a little of the flour mixture until combined. Fold in the remaining flour mixture, then stir in the chocolate chips.

Place tablespoons of the mixture onto the trays, leaving room for spreading (about 12 per tray). Bake for 8 minutes then remove and leave to cool on the tray for 2 minutes. You may need to bake a third tray if any mixture remains. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Makes about 30

brownies 2

Chocolate Brownies

The trick with brownies is not to overcook them – the top should feel firm to the touch, but the centre should still be a little soft when you insert a skewer or toothpick. The chocolate will continue to cook slightly for a few minutes after coming out of the oven.

Best ever brownies

300g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
300g unsalted butter, chopped
5 free-range eggs
350g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
150g plain flour
40g (1/3 cup) cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
100g dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 180C (fan forced 160C). Grease a shallow 20 cm x 30 cm baking tin and line with baking paper (leave a little overhanging the two long sides to help remove the brownies from the tin). Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water). Allow to cool.

Place the eggs, sugar and vanilla in an electric mixer and beat for 3–4 minutes or until pale and fluffy. Beat in the cooled chocolate mixture. Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking powder and a pinch of salt and fold in with a large metal spoon until smooth. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.

Spoon the mixture into the tin and smooth the surface. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until dark brown and the top has formed a crust. It should be firm to the touch but still a bit fudgy. Allow to cool in the tin, then remove and cut into squares. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Makes 15–18

Chocolate Mousse

choc mousse 1

Chocolate mousse 

3 free range eggs, separated
200g (6 1/2oz) dark chocolate, chopped
185ml (6fl oz) double cream, lightly whipped
2 tbsp caster sugar

In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg yolks. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of hot water, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Remove the bowl from the heat and gradually add the beaten yolks, mixing until smooth. Fold through the cream and stir until combined.

Whisk the egg whites with electric beaters until soft peaks form. Add the sugar and whisk briefly. Fold a little of the egg white mixture into the mousse to slacken it, then quickly and lightly fold in the remainder. Continue mixing until there are no streaks or pockets of egg white.

Spoon the mixture equally into 6 small cups or glasses, cover with cling film and chill until firm.