Kitchen gadgets review: the Fail-Safe Fondant Dessert Kit

Rhik Sammader kitchen gadgets Fondant Dessert KitThe Fail-Safe Fondant Dessert Kit (£19.99, www.lakeland.co.uk) consists of cuffed silicone cylindrical moulds with flexible counterpart tray. Discs of frozen filling are baked in batter, the differential heat equation approximating a molten sponge cake.

Why?
Because the fondant stop at a pudding party, the fun don’t st– it’s a … never mind. Just enjoy some chocolate pudding.

Pudding precision: Rhik furnishes his faux fondant with a frozen filling.

Well?
Ah, the formidable fondant. You may know her as moelleux au chocolat if you’re fancy, or choccie lava cake if you’re not. She is fickle, unknowable, a liability at a dinner party. In other words, she’s sexy. Will she show you her melting middle or collapse in a hot mess? I call the dish MasterChefs’ Mistake in tribute to the contestants slain by it. If only they’d had the Fail-Safe Fondant Dessert Kit, which “guarantees perfect puds”. How? By baking your mixture with coins of pre-frozen filling inside. In theory, the mix sets, the centre melts, and you’re left with a Trojan horse of oozy glory. Cunning.

But words like “guarantee”, “fail-safe” and “fool-proof” are red rags to a bull. I’ve got more fool in me than they know. I’m Fool Hand Luke, in a Fool Metal Jacket. If there’s a way to fail, I’ll find it. Sure enough, my first attempt is farcical. The tray of fillings is so floppy, carrying it is like balancing Maltesers on a skateboard. My desserts, seeping chocolate, fall apart when inverted; I’m left with broken sponge floating in a syrup ocean. I wouldn’t mind being so bad if I wasn’t also cheating. See, fondants are a concerto of texture and timing – these pre-frozen middles are a trick. They are, like technical cashmere or Ray Winstone attempting an accent, not quite the real deal.

Not so fail-safe after all...

But the faux-fondants do have one major advantage: a lava cake’s shell and centre are the same taste, at different consistencies. I have one terrible consistency, with very different tastes. White chocolate and raspberry ganache is delicious, as is vanilla centre in dark chocolate. I have plans with pistachio paste. There’s a lot of trial and error firming my batter, and I happily eat every error. It’s an edible swatch book of flavour combinations. So, not beautiful, or reliable, or classic; but it does make fondants fancier.

Redeeming features?
The dessert kit may not be fail-safe but, with these ingredients, it’s a pretty safe way to fail.

Counter, drawer, back of the cupboard?
In the cupboard, with a little stool and a little spoon. No one needs to know. 2/5

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