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A special dessert for the Belgian National Day

Date: 
14 July 2021

 

In normal times, on 21 July, a large number of guests would be invited to a reception at the Ambassador’s Residence in Belgrave Square. However, like last year, Covid-19 has not made it possible to celebrate Belgium’s National Day in the usual manner. We decided we couldn’t just let the day pass and came up with the idea of creating a Belgian dessert with a British twist that people can make and enjoy to celebrate our National Day at home. Keep an eye on the embassy’s FB page to find out how the idea came about! For those of you who would like to have a go at preparing the special dessert, here is the recipe.

 
RECIPE
 
BELGIAN CHOCOLATE MOUSSE ON A CRISPY SPECULOOS BASE WITH A BRITISH TWIST
(8 guests)

  • Dark chocolate mousse bar
  • Speculoos base (*a Belgian ginger-based biscuit, also referred to as ‘caramelised biscuit’ and Biscoff)
  • Orange gel
  • Orangettes coated with Belgian chocolate
  • Speculoos and orange ice cream
  • Petals of Red Marigold flower (decoration)

  
Chocolate mousse

  • 55gr egg yolk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 x 30gr granulated sugar
  • 15ml water
  • 125gr dark chocolate
  • 225gr whipped cream
  • 1 gelatin leaf
  • pinch of salt

  
1. Melt the chocolate ‘au bain-marie’

2. Make a syrup with 30gr of sugar and 15ml of water, heat it to 121°C

3. Whip the cream to yogurt thickness

4. Soak the gelatin leaf for a few minutes in cold water

5. Beat the yolks together with the egg and sugar

6. Squeeze the gelatin and melt in the syrup

7. Add the syrup and melted chocolate to the eggs

8. Carefully fold the whipped cream into the egg mixture

8. Fill the silicone molds using a piping bag or let the mixture set in a bowl in the refrigerator
 

Speculoos base

  • 300gr speculoos
  • 200gr butter
  • Pinch of salt

  
1. Crush the speculoos into small pieces (make sure some coarse pieces remain)

2. Melt the butter

3. Mix the speculoos pieces, salt and butter together

4. Roll out the mixture between two baking mats or baking paper to a layer of about 5mm

5. Let it set in the fridge

6. Once fully set it can be cut into rectangular shapes
 

Chocolate ganache

  • 50gr butter
  • 100ml cream
  • 200gr dark chocolate

 
Lightly warm up 100ml of cream with 50gr of butter. Once the butter has melted, pour the lukewarm cream over the chocolate and mix the chocolate into the mixture using a hand blender.
 

Orange gel dots

  • 400ml orange juice
  • 100ml water
  • 6gr agar

 
1. Mix all ingredients in a saucepan

2. Bring to the boil and let it boil for a few seconds to allow the agar to set

3. Pour into a bowl and let it set in the fridge

4. Blend into a soft gel

5. Fill a piping bag with the gel and store it at a cold temperature
 

Speculoos ice cream

  • 250ml milk
  • 250ml whipped cream
  • 85gr brown sugar
  • 2 coffee spoons of speculoos spices
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 3 egg yolks
  • Finely grated orange zest (2 oranges)

 
1. Place the milk, cream, brown sugar, speculoos spice, salt, vanilla and grated zest in a saucepan and bring to the boil

2. Turn off the heat and let it steep for a while to release the flavours

3. Strain using a fine sieve

4. Beat the egg yolks and add the milk mixture

5. Pour everything into a saucepan and bring to 80°C while stirring

6. Pour the mixture into a measuring cup and let it cool in the fridge

7. Spin the mixture in the ice cream maker until it reaches ice cream thickness
 

Orangettes (36 pieces)

  • 125gr candied orange peel
  • 100gr chocolate (white or dark)

 
1. Melt the chocolate ‘au bain-marie’

2. Dip the pieces of candied orange peel into the chocolate and place on baking paper

3. Leave to set in the fridge, after a few minutes turn slightly so that they get a nice and even shape
 

Plating

1. Cut the speculoos base to the size of the chocolate mousse bars. Place the bars carefully on top

2. Place the assembled bars on a plate using a grill and pour the chocolate ganache over them. Let it set in the fridge (15 minutes)

3. Place the bar on the left hand side of the plate. Add a scoop of ice cream next to it and decorate with gel dots and the orangettes

4. Place petals of red marigold flower on the gel dots which adds the red element

 

Bon appétit