What looks like chocolate and sort of tastes like chocolate (if you wish hard enough), but is definitely not chocolate?
A chocolate pudding fruit of course.
I saw some at the markets the other day and couldn’t resist getting them. The fruit starts off green and firm, but can only be eaten once it’s gone squishy and discoloured. Although it’s called the Chocolate Pudding Fruit, it is actually related to the persimmon, and tastes quite similar. We ate one of the fruits fresh, which the MCs enjoyed, but we noticed a slight bitter aftertaste. Not sure if we had let it ripen enough?
Then I wondered whether I could bake them into something. Hence the faux chocolate tarts. I used some leftover shortcrust pastry to make cases, and blind baked these. I made up a filling using ½ cup of mashed chocolate pudding fruit (one fruit – skinned, seeds removed), 2 tbsp brown sugar, 1/3 cup condensed milk and 1 egg, all beaten together until combined but not frothy. The mixture looked quite an unappealing grey-brown at this stage, but once baked, the top became dark and chocolatey.
Some of the filling went into little tart cases (baked in a mini muffin pan), and the rest into two larger tart cases and one ramekin. I think I overbaked the little ones because the filling peaked and cracked (still tasted fine though). Either that or the heat was too strong. The larger tarts, baked for slightly less time, looked much better, and had a more pudding-like texture.
(Please don’t inspect the pastry too closely, I’d quickly made it up one night for dinner and I think I overworked it, so it wasn’t as short as I would have liked).
Did the end results taste like chocolate? Well, if you don’t tell anyone what’s in the tarts, they’ll probably trick themselves into believing that it tastes a bit like chocolate. Or maybe that’s just the MCs.
I thought the filling tasted a little like caramel and pecan pie filling (without the pecans). Couldn’t quite taste the persimmon-y flavour, and I wonder if the fruit is just too delicate to be baked?
Although the experiment worked, and the resulting tarts tasted quite good, I don’t think I would bother repeating this because novelty value aside, the tarts didn’t showcase the fruit at all. And I much prefer eating real chocolate.
Wonder what else I can use chocolate pudding fruit for. Any suggestions?
Grow your own chocolate (fruit)
Have a great weekend :)