Chocolate île flottante

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Ready in 50-60 mins, serves 6, microwavable

For the crème anglaise

  • 600ml / 1 pint milk
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 100g / 4 oz caster sugar

For the meringue (the île)

  • 2 egg whites
  • 50g cater sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder

To make the custar, pour the milk into a saucepan. Split the vanilla pod, scrape the seeds out and cut the pod in three and add all of it to the milk. Heat gently, then simmer for 5 minutes.

Put the egg yolks and suger in a bowl, beat until pale and thick, then gradually whisk in the hot milk. Return the pan to the heat and heat gently, stirring all the time, until thickened. It should take about 10 mins and do not rch it or it will begin to curdle. It will not be as thick as normal custard but it wshould be just thick enough to lightly coat the back of a wooden spoon. 
Strain into a clean bowl, discard the vanilla pods, cover with cling film and chill. (can be made up to 2 days in advance)
To maje the meringue, whick the egg whites until they form stiff peaks then whisk in a third of the sugar, then another third, then the last third. When the meringue is ready it will stand in peaks that dip at the end like a bird’s beak. Sift the cocoa powder and whisk it in. Spoon the meringue into six teacups and microwave at 500W individually for 10 to 15 seconds until firm to the touch. Leave to coll..
Just before serving, spoon the crème anglaise into six glasses or dishes, invert each île flottante on your hand then slide carefully onto the crème. Scatter with chocolate curls and serve. (The desserts can be assembled and chilled for up to 1 hour before serving)
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