RECIPE | Mellisa Hemsley-inspired chocolate pot to warm you

This fancy midweek dessert wows guests

10 July 2024 - 11:50
By Tshepo Mathabathe
Fancy chocolate dessert to satisfy those winter chocolate cravings. Stock photo.
Image: Fancy chocolate dessert to satisfy those winter chocolate cravings. Stock photo.

My friend and I have decided to do a reset of sorts where we eliminate different foods to restore our bodies to their finest functioning. Why we decided on restrictions in winter is beyond both of us and has tested our mettle over the past 12 days, but we press on.

It’s odd that I chose to do this because I am not a fan of diets, restriction and eliminating food groups in general. Everything in moderation is where I usually angle my life. I generally have one slice of cake a week, but not every week, and I usually share the slice. I mostly eat fresh and organic produce and cooking at home is my favourite thing. There is always food at home. Our mothers and aunties were not incorrect on that adage. What’s better is that you know what goes into it.

What I do enjoy about this reset is the awareness it brings about how we eat. It is a practice in mindfulness more than anything else. Getting to sugar elimination day on this reset is an interesting exercise. Sugar is in so much. I remember being at a conference with a colleague, who became a friend, and she told me potato chips have sugar in them and gluten. How sneaky. Sugar hides everywhere.

Tshepo Mathabathe's chocolate pots
Image: Supplied Tshepo Mathabathe's chocolate pots

More than reading labels with deep interest and avoiding anything with non-natural sources, I have an unnatural inclination to mainline a pack of gummy sweets in one sitting. So, when that detox headache and the withdrawal hits, it hurts. This mindfulness is welcome. 

We enjoy noticing how habitual certain things are and the little rituals we build into the everyday. We miss the ritual of a morning coffee, but you find real joy in the deep sleep and lowered cortisol levels. The payoff is great.

The one ritual I do not have to forgo is my daily chocolate intake. We are allowed chocolate on this reset, 85%, but that works for me. When days got dreary and I wished for something delicious and perhaps a little nutritious, I rejigged a favourite dessert.

A little chocolate pot, inspired by Melissa Hemsley. I made it and left out the maple syrup and used almond milk.

I’ve made it before with all the delicious additions, but I always halve the maple syrup because I do not enjoy anything too sweet. Now I get to have a reset with dessert. A win for all.


  1. 180ml almond or full cream dairy milk
  2. 140g 85% dark chocolate broken into squares
  3. 5 tablespoons of maple syrup (if using)
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Heat the milk at medium to low temperature for one minute until it’s warmed all the way through
  • Place about 120g of chocolate into a food processor, with the egg, maple syrup and vanilla extract
  • Slowly pour the milk into the food processor on low speed, bit by bit, so you do not cook the egg. Do it slowly until all the milk is combined and you have a silky, chocolatey mixture.
  • Pour the smooth, blended mixture into little glasses, I use espresso cups, and put in the fridge to set, preferably overnight.

Remove from the fridge, grate over the remaining chocolate, sprinkle Maldon salt and top with a raspberry if in season and serve.

It looks so fancy for a midweek at-home dessert, but also wows guests and is a welcome treat every time.