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Velvet chocolate torte

12 Hobnob biscuits (or similar)
59 g butter, melted
2 egg whites
85 g caster sugar
250 g plain chocolate
284 ml carton double cream
2 tbsp brandy
sifted icing sugar, to decorate
single cream, to serve

1. In a large strong plastic food bag, crush the biscuits to crumbs with a rolling pin. Stir into the butter until evenly mixed. Reserve 2tbsp of the crumbs, then press the rest over the base of a 20 cm or 8in loose-bottomed cake tin and smooth down with the back of a large metal spoon. Chill the base while you make the filling.
2. In a mixing bowl set over a pan of simmering water, whisk the egg whites and sugar for about 5 minutes until it forms a stiff meringue that stands in soft peaks.
3. Break up the chocolate and melt in the microwave on medium for 3-4 minutes or in a small bowl set over the pan of hot water left over from making meringue. Whip the cream until it just holds its shape.
4. Fold the chocolate into the meringue, followed by the cream and the brandy. Pour into the tin and smooth the top. Sprinkle with the reserved crumbs and chill for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight, so it is softly set.
5. Just before serving, remove the torte from the tin, slide on to a plate and dust lightly with icing sugar. Cut into wedges with a warm knife and serve with cream.
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