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For the candied lime peel, put the sugar and 150ml water in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Bring to the boil, then turn down to a slow simmer. Add the strips of lime peel and cook gently for 25 mins until the peel has softened and the syrup has thickened. Sprinkle a layer of caster sugar over a sheet of baking parchment, lift the softened lime peel with a slotted spoon onto the sugar and roll to coat. Leave to cool until hardened. Will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
Next, make the lime curd. Put the lime juice and zest, sugar, cornflour, butter, eggs and egg yolk in a heatproof bowl, and whisk together to combine. Set the bowl on top of a pan of simmering water, and continue to whisk for about 20 mins until thickened – don’t be alarmed if it looks like it has curdled at first, as once the butter has melted, it will come together. It should coat the back of the spoon once done. Stir through the food colouring, if using, and set aside to cool. Will keep, chilled, in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Brush the moulds with the melted butter, then place them on a tray and put in the freezer for 10 mins or until the butter has set. Take out and brush with butter again, then return to the freezer for another 10 mins. Dust the insides with a good coating of cocoa powder, tap out any excess and set aside.
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. In a bowl over a pan of simmering water, melt the butter and chocolate together, then leave to cool.
Whisk the sugar and eggs with an electric hand whisk until light, fluffy and the mixture has tripled in volume. Add the cooled chocolate mixture and lime zest, and mix well. Fold the flour gently and quickly into the fondant mixture until fully incorporated, then spoon the mixture into the moulds, filling them almost to the top – leave a little space as they will rise. Bake in the oven for 10 mins or until a crust has formed and the sides are just starting to come away from the moulds.
Remove from the oven, and leave to stand for 1 min, then turn out – don’t leave them any longer or the heat from the moulds will continue to cook the fondant and they won’t have an oozy centre. To serve, place a spoonful of curd on each serving plate and spread with the back of a spoon. Place the fondants on top, and top each one with candied lime peel.