Chocolate Pye

This is a recipe from Hannah Glasse dating from the eighteenth century. The crackling crust is particularly successful - it looks beautiful and is delicious to eat.


For the crackling crust

  • 2 cups ground almonds
  • 1 egg white
  • 5 tbsp sugar

For the topping

  • 8 oz semisweet chocolate, grated
  • cups heavy cream

To decorate

  • Toasted almonds
  • Yellow rose petals


Work the ground almonds, egg white, and sugar into a paste, and knead into a ball. On a sugared surface, roll out to a round ¼ inch thick and large enough to line a 8-inch nonstick tart pan. Leave to dry for 30 minutes. Then place in the pan and decorate the edges with the finger and thumb technique. Line with foil (but no baking beans) and bake in a preheated oven at 350°F for 20-25 minutes. Watch carefully to avoid scorching. Leave to cool.

Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over hot water, then mix in the cream, stirring all the time to prevent splitting. Remove from the heat and, as the chocolate starts to set, beat the mixture to a light foam. Allow to cool for a minute or two before pouring into the cooled crackling crust. Leave to set. Serve decorated with toasted almonds and yellow rose petals.