No I haven’t gone crazy; there is no meat in here. The salami is really just a fancy name for what is essentially a boozy log-shaped refrigerator cake. This is a rich, decadent treat full of different textures and flavours. I recommend toasting the nuts lightly in the oven or in a dry frying pan before adding to the mixture for extra depth of flavour. As with many of my recipes, change the ingredients to your taste. Why not try a snickers peanut flavour, salted caramel, honeycombe, oreos and marshmallows or mincemeat even!
- 250g/9oz dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids)
- 250g/9oz amaretti (crunchy ones) or shortbread biscuits
- 100g/3½oz salted butter, softened
- 150g/5½oz caster sugar
- 3 free-range eggs
- 2 tbsp amaretto liqueur
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 75g/2½oz toasted almonds, roughly chopped
- 75g/2½oz toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 50g/2oz walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp icing sugar, to decorate
- In the microwave or in a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan of simmering water (but not touching the water), melt the chocolate until smooth. While the chocolate’s melting, put the biscuits into a large freezer bag, seal and bash them with a rolling pin until you have a bag of rubble – not dust. When the chocolate’s melted, remove it to a cold place (not the fridge) and set aside to cool.
- Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl and make sure the mixture is soft and fluffy.
- Gradually, and one by one, beat in the eggs. Don’t worry if the mixture looks curdled at this stage: all manner of ills will be righted once the chocolate is added later. Then beat in the amaretto liqueur.
- Push the cocoa powder through a little sieve or tea strainer into the cooled chocolate, and, with a small rubber spatula, stir till combined and then beat this into the egg mixture too.
- When you have a smooth chocolate mixture, tip in the chopped nuts and crushed biscuits. Fold these in firmly but patiently to make sure everything is chocolate-covered. Transfer this mixture, still in its bowl, to the fridge to firm up a bit for 20-30 minutes. Don’t leave it for much longer than this or it will be difficult to get out of the bowl to shape.
- Unroll and slice off two large pieces of cling film, overlapping them, so that you have a large cling-covered surface to roll the chocolate salami out on. Tip the chocolate mixture out in the middle of this and, using your hands, mould the mixture into a fat salami-like log approximately 30cm/12in long.
- Cover the chocolate log completely with the cling film, and then firmly roll it, as if it were a rolling pin, to create a smooth, rounded cylinder from the rough log you started with. Twist the ends by grasping both ends of the cling film and rolling the sausage-log towards you several times. Then put it in the fridge for at least six hours – though preferably overnight – to set.
- To serve, unwrap the cling film and dust the outside with icing sugar. Cut into slices. Best served fridge cold. Keeps for several days in the fridge dependent on will power.