Salted caramel profiteroles in a warm chocolate sauce with rosemary honeycomb and roast pistachio crème anglaise

Kerri Ward's signature dish from Heat 3 of MasterChef 2014


  • for the profiterole:
  • 200 ml cold water
  • 4 tsp caster sugar
  • 85 g unsalted butter, plus some for greasing
  • 115 g plain flour
  • pinch salt
  • 3 medium free-range eggs
  • 50 g butter
  • for the salted caramel filling:
  • 2 tblsp golden syrup
  • 2 tblsp soft light brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 300 ml double cream, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • for the chocolate sauce:
  • 150 ml double cream
  • 70 ml whole milk
  • 100 g dark chocolate
  • for the rosemary honeycomb:
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 150 g golden caster sugar
  • 75 g golden syrup
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • for the pistachio crème anglaise:
  • 75 g shelled raw, unsalted pistachios
  • 250 ml milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • salt
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 tsp pure almond extract


  1. For the Pistachio Creme Anglaise, spread the shelled pistachios on a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 190 degrees for 5 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Let cool completely, then rub the pistachios in a kitchen towel to remove the skins. Transfer the pistachios to a food processor and grind to a fine powder.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the milk with the pistachios and bring to a boil. Cover, remove from the heat and let stand for 30 minutes.
  3. To make the choux pastry, place the water, sugar and butter into a large saucepan. Heat gently until the butter has melted. Turn up the heat until the mixture boils, then quickly pour in the flour and salt all in one go. Remove from the heat and beat the mixture vigorously with a wooden spoon until a smooth paste is formed. Once the mixture comes away from the side of the pan, transfer to a large bowl and leave to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  4. While the choux pastry is resting, make the honeycomb. Chop one sprig of rosemary finely. Place 1 whole sprig of rosemary in a pan with the sugar and golden syrup. Set over a low heat and stir slowly until the temperature of the sugar thermometer reaches 150 degrees. Remove the rosemary, remove the pan from the heat and add the bicarbonate of soda, stirring quickly as it bubbles up. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking tray and scatter over the finally chopped rosemary. Leave to cool completely.
  5. Beat in the eggs, a little at a time, until the mixture is smooth and glossy and has a soft dropping consistency. Lightly grease a large baking sheet. Using a piping bag and plain 1cm/½in nozzle, pipe the mixture into small balls. Gently rub the top of each ball with a wet finger – this helps to create a crisper top. Place the baking sheet into the oven. Before closing the oven door, pour half a cup of water into the roasting tin at the bottom of the oven and shut the door quickly – this will create more steam and help the profiteroles to rise. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden-brown all over (If you remove the profiteroles while they are still pale they will become soggy.)
  6. For the salted caramel filling, combine butter, sugar, syrup, vanilla and salt in a pan over a high heat and allow to bubble up for few minutes until thick. Stir in 100ml of double cream, continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes before removing from the heat and allowing the cool to room temperature.
  7. Strain the pistachio milk through a fine sieve into another medium saucepan. Add the sugar and a pinch of salt. Whisk in the egg yolks and cook over low heat, whisking constantly, until the custard sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 8 minutes. Do not let the custard boil. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a bowl. Stir in the almond extract and let cool, stirring often. Cover and chill until needed.
  8. Whip the remaining double cream and fold into the cooled caramel mixture; if the caramel is quite stiff, you may want to beat one or two large spoonfuls of the cream in first to loosen the texture before gently folding in the rest. Spoon into a piping bag and chill until needed.
  9. Remove the profiteroles from the oven and turn the oven off. Prick the base of each profiterole with a skewer. Place on a cooling rack with the base facing up and leave to cool completely.
  10. For the hot chocolate sauce, bring the cream and milk to the boil in a saucepan, remove from the heat, add the chopped chocolate and whisk until the chocolate has melted and the sauce is smooth.
  11. To Serve:
  12. Pipe the chilled caramel cream into the profiteroles and arrange 6 on each plate in a pyramid – use some of the chocolate sauce to ‘stick’ them together if they won’t stay. Drizzle over the hot chocolate sauce so each profiterole is draped in it. Break the honeycomb into rough shards and arrange 2 alongside with a generous spoonful of crème anglaise. Smash some of the honeycomb into a coarse powder and scatter over the profiteroles to garnish.

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