Warm chocolate brownies

Serves: 9
Preparation time: 20 minutes plus freezing
Baking time: 30 minutes


350g (12oz) dark chocolate, broken up
200g (7oz) butter, cubed
3 large eggs
150g (5oz) dark muscovado sugar
100g (3½oz) vanilla sugar
75g (3oz) pecans, roughly chopped and toasted
75g (3oz) plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cocoa for dusting
25g (1oz) grated chocolate for decorating

For the apricot and maple ice cream:

6 ripe apricots, stoned and chopped
4 tbsp maple syrup
500ml (18floz) tub vanilla ice cream, softened


1 Preheat the oven to 170°C/R3 and line the base and sides of a 23cm (9in) square brownie tin. Melt the chocolate and butter over a pan of simmering water and stir until smooth.

2 Beat together the eggs and both the sugars. Pour into the chocolate mixture, add the pecans and combine well. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30 minutes or until just set. To test, gently press the centre of the cake and it should feel just firm. Allow to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.

3 To make the ice cream, place the apricots in a small pan along with the maple syrup. Gently bring to the boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes until softened. Allow to cool. Spoon the ice cream into a roomy bowl and swirl in half of the apricot mixture. Return to the freezer to freeze.

4 To serve, cut the brownies into squares, dust with cocoa and top with a scoop of ice cream and serve with a spoonful of the cooked apricots. Scatter with the grated chocolate and serve.


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