The Great Australian Bake Off 2016 - Episode 4 - Chocolate Week...

Ahhhhh chocolate week... is there nothing more delicious than chocolate? Was a terrible task to have to test bake and test taste all these recipes..... hard work this! hahahahhaah

It's late May early June... should be nice and cold in the shed right? WRONG! 32 degrees.... try tempering chocolate in that heat...

Started with a signature bake, a delicious s'moreish slice - notice the cheeky play of words to incorporate Moreish Cakes into my bake? It was play with an old American classic but with a bit of Monica flair in them. Not a traditional S'more, but a concept of them with the mallow and the crunch.

I baked my own graham crackers base, crushed them up, made 2 types of marshmallows and a delicious dark choc topping. Made then in 90 minutes at home, all set firmly enough to slice and serve

 Perfect in the home test bake

Perfect in the home test bake

2 hours in the shed in that heat and they were a soft oozy mushy mess... classy! hahaha I still ate a slice, nothing will stop me for consuming chocolate!!!

 Runny mess in the heat of the shed :(

Runny mess in the heat of the shed :(

Thankfully the arvo saw a reduction in the heat and technical bake was a fabulous little number by Matt - chocolate heaven with 50 million techniques I couldn't even pronounce let alone have ever attempted. This is the bake that saw me go off in Italian - several times but you only got to see the PG rated version of me in action!

I finished with time up my sleeve - was a great bake and enjoyed this a lot - right up my alley. Came in a very a happy 2nd! Go me!

Poor Bojo during this challenge was behind me. He was really struggling with the bake and I jumped in to give him a hand - you know when you are under so much pressure and stress, your brain just fails? He was there. On tv it looked terrible with me barking orders at him, but he had just stopped functioning, so I clapped and said stopped staring and me and get moving, what do you want and where and I will do it, was like watching his brain reset and got stuck straight back into - thank god in under 2 minutes we had a constructed cake to serve up. He then came to my rescue in the showstopper challenge and I can't tell you how grateful I was to have him there as I had hit the same wall... bless him that day!

Showstopper - 36 identical chocolate cakes and what does Monica want to do? 36 tempered chocolate cups and saucers with dark chocolate espresso cake, laced with Franjelico and 3 different types of Mousse and a little white chocolate and hazelnut spoon..... doable? Yes, in my kitchen in under 4 hours with air con... in a hot shed, no air con and it's 32 degrees? Nup...

Throw into the mix, as most of my closest and dearest know, I have a medical condition and all the extra hard work had taken it's toll... close to collapse, chocolate that won't temper... and a big to do list... if it wasn't for Bojo, Claire and a couple of the other bakers coming to my rescue... there would not have even been 19 to present.... was very grateful also to the team as there was time between finishing and food porn for everything to go into the fridge to firm up and I was allowed to take the acetate off for photos and judging - the bakers had all so gracefully agreed for that and I pray thank you!

Judging was hard to face up to. I apologised. Matt and Maggie were gracious but obviously disappointed. Matt said twice after eating the components, "Such a pity, there were delicious..." with a head shake... thanks Matt... I know...

By the skin of my teeth I didn't go home this week..... was very grateful. And very sorry for Bojo as he's truly an awesome baker and man.

Want the recipes? Find them here:

S'Moreish Marshmallow Slice

Espresso Shot Individual Cakes

Love, Monica <3 

 

Monica Cavallaro