When Europeans first arrived in South America, they gave trees and fruits that resembled their native ones back home the same names. As a result, the Venezuelan Castano was named after the chestnut. It comes in a football-sized fruit, with a case that divides in three and has scores of nuts inside. These nuts are twice the size of Europan chestnuts, and make a good alternative to them.
250g dark chocolate, roughly chopped. Suggestion, Peruvian Chulucanas 70
Lightly grease the loaf tin and line with baking paper.
Melt the chocolate with the butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl is not in contact with the water. Set aside.
Beat the chestnut purée, icing sugar, cognac and vanilla essence together in a large bowl until well blended and smooth. Beat in the melted chocolate and butter until well combined. Add the cream and continue beating until evenly mixed through.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the surface. Place in the fridge to chill for 2-3 hours, or until firmed up.
Turn the terrine out onto a serving plate. Slice thinly and serve topped with whipped cream, a scattering of raisins soaked in cognac or rum and a spoonful or Bitter Chocolate and Coffee Sauce.
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