Recipe: Chocolate and Coffee Parfait with Tonka Bean Ice Cream

Chocolate and Coffee Parfait with Tonka Bean Ice Cream. Picture: Comp
Chocolate and Coffee Parfait with Tonka Bean Ice Cream. Picture: Comp
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This week we try a lovely dessert, courtesy of Paul Gunning.

Chocolate and Coffee Parfait with Tonka Bean Ice Cream


For the parfait:

280g dark chocolate

150ml strong coffee

460ml cream

6 egg yolks

180g sugar

For the ice cream:

5 egg yolks
600ml single cream
125g caster sugar
1 tonka bean, grated

Method (parfait)

In a bowl, place the chocolate broken up into small pieces, coffee and 60ml cream and melt over a bain marie. Once melted and smooth, remove from heat and leave to cool.

Meanwhile beat eggs and sugar until thick and pale.

Add chocolate mixture into egg mixture until well combined and place in fridge to cool.

Meanwhile whisk remaining 400ml of cream until soft peaks form, then fold chocolate mix into cream and chill.

Method (ice cream)

Heat the cream and grated tonka bean together over a medium heat. Stir every now and again, and do not let the cream boil. When it’s steamy, turn the heat off and clamp a lid on. Allow to infuse for 5-10 minutes.

In a medium bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar. There is no need to incorporate air.

Pour the hot cream onto the yolks, stirring constantly to prevent scrambling.

Rinse and dry the pan used to heat the cream, then pour the custard back in and heat gently, stirring constantly, until thick and creamy. Aim for the texture of thick cream, and never allow to boil.

Churn the mixture in an ice cream machine until set.

Transfer the sorbet into a freezer-proof container and chill in the freezer for 1-2 hours, or until set.

Chocolate Marquis


300g dark chocolate

150g unsalted butter, softened

150g caster sugar

6tbsp cocoa powder

6 eggs

450ml double cream


Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a heatproof bowl. Then assemble a bain-marie – do this by pouring a little water into a saucepan and placing the bowl over the water (making sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl). Set the pan over a gentle heat and warm the water until the chocolate has melted. Take off the heat and leave to cool a little.

Meanwhile, place the butter and half the sugar into another large bowl. Using a tabletop mixer or electric hand whisk, beat until the mixture is really light and creamy, then beat in the cocoa powder.

Separate the eggs (the whites can be frozen for another time) and put the yolks in a third bowl. Tip in the remaining sugar, then beat together until pale and creamy. To check if it’s ready, make a figure-of-eight shape in the mixture with the beater – it should hold its shape for a moment. In a fourth bowl, whip the cream until thickened with soft peaks.

Pour the melted chocolate into the butter mixture, and carefully stir through until it is well combined. Gently fold in the egg mixture. When this is amalgamated, stir in the whipped cream. Now line a 6.5 x 22cm tin with three layers of cling film, leaving a 10cm overhang.

Spoon in the mixture. Fold over the cling film, then chill overnight.

Just before serving, place the marquise in the freezer for 10 minutes to make it easier to slice. Place the tin, bottom-side up, on a serving plate, slide off the tin, then peel away the cling film. If you have a blowtorch, quickly run the flame over the marquise to give it a sheen. Alternatively, dip a palette knife in boiling water and smooth the surface that way. Use a serrated knife dipped in boiling water to cut into slices.

• Paul Gunning is head chef and proprietor from Purslane, in Stockbridge.