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Fancy more Macaroons?

15 Jan

If you have tried the Macaron Caramel Beurre Sale since I posted the recipe, you may want to try new fillings and new techniques such as butter cream, curd or flavored chocolate ganache.

Here they are, from lemon & basil to chocolate & chilli, I hope you will enjoy the flavors and play with the colors!

Just a quick reminder of the shells method….

Ingredients

  • 30g flour
  • 350g icing sugar
  • 212g almond powder
  • 190g egg whites
  • 90g caster sugar
  • Food Colouring

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°c.
Start by preparing your baking sheets (3), either buttered and lined with greaseproof
paper or lined with a silicone matt. Also prepare a piping bag with a plain tip.
Sift the flour, icing sugar and almond powder together, set aside in a bowl.
In the bowl, put the egg whites, measured precisely, and start whisking with a hand
electric mixer. Add half of the caster sugar as it starts foaming, keep whisking until it
thickens, and add the rest of the caster sugar near the end, you can add the colouring
as well at that point. The whites must be shiny and firm, but be careful not to over
whisk (the whites will become grainy if over whisked).
Add the dry ingredients (flour, icing sugar, almond powder) to the whites and start to
mix gently using a large flexible spatula. When the mixture is smooth and there are
no streaks of egg whites, stop folding and scrape the batter into the piping bag (if you
are alone, it helps to put the bag in a large glass).
Pipe the batter on the prepared baking sheets in 3cm circles (about one tablespoon
each of batter, evenly spaced 3cm.
Leave to rest for at least 20min.


Then bake for 12min. Let cool completely then remove from baking sheet.
Assemble the shell and the ganache: pipe some ganache on one shell, put the other
shell on top.
The macaroons taste even better the next day.

Here they are…. the cooked shells!


Matching the shells now…

Ready to pipe the ganaches and other fillings!

Here they are…. the cooked shells!

Chocolate and Chilli Macaroons

Chocolate and Chilli Ganache

  • 1/2 red chilli or 1 tsp of chilli flakes
  • 130ml double cream
  • 130g dark chocolate
  • 30g butter

Boil the cream and chilli flakes together and let infuse.
Melt chocolate and butter over a bain-marie
Incorporate the cream to the chocolate, pour in a piping bag and refrigerate for at
least an hour.

Chocolate and Passion Fruit Macaroons

Chocolate and Passion Fruit Ganache

  • 300g dark chocolate
  • 250ml double cream
  • 2 passion fruits

Put the dark chocolate in a bowl, broken into small pieces.
Put the cream in a pan and bring to the boil. Pour over the chocolate and mix until smooth. Add the passion fruit. Leave to cool down and then put the mixture in a piping bag. Refrigerate.

Rose & Litchi Macaroons

Rose & Litchi Ganache

  • 24 Litchis
  • 200g of white chocolate
  • Rose Water

Peel and remove the stones of the litchis and puree them in a pan with a little rose
water.
If needed, blend the litchis in order to have an homogeneous mix then add the white
chocolate and let it melt with the litchis until you have a nice and silky ganache.
Taste the ganache and add a little rose water if needed.
Pour the ganache in a piping bag and let it rest in the fridge.
Your ganache will be ready to pipe.

Raspberry Macaroons

White Chocolate and Raspberry Ganache

  • 300g white chocolate
  • 150ml double cream
  • 150g raspberries

Mix the raspberries to make a coulis.
Put the white chocolate broken into small pieces in a bowl.
Put the cream in a pan and bring to the boil then pour it over the white chocolate and
mix. Add the raspberry coulis, mix, and leave to cool down before you transfer it in a
piping bag. Refrigerate so that it sets.

Pistachio Macaroons

Pistachio Ganache

  • 300g white chocolate
  • 150g double cream
  • About 1 tsp pistachio paste

Put the white chocolate broken into small pieces in a bowl.
Put the cream in a pan with about one teaspoon of pistachio paste (more or less
according to your taste) and bring to the boil then pour it over the white chocolate,
mix. Leave to cool down before you transfer it in a piping bag. Refrigerate so that it
sets.

Lemon and Basil Macaroons

Lemon and Basil Curd

  • 1/2 gelatine sheet
  • 3 eggs
  • 135g caster sugar
  • 130g lemon juice (2 ½ lemons)
  • 10 basil leaves finely chopped by hand
  • 175g butter, diced

Put the gelatine in a bowl with cold water to soften it.
Mix the eggs with the sugar and the lemon juice. Put in a pan and heat slowly, always mixing. Add the basil leaves. Cook the mixture until it starts boiling and it thickens. Add the gelatine, put the mixture in a sieve and filtrate above a bowl that contains the diced butter. Mix the lemon cream with a hand electric mixer for 1 min.
Leave to cool and then transfer into a piping bag.

Orange and Cinnamon Macaroons

Orange and Cinnamon Curd

  • 1 1/2 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp Corn flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon or ½ cinnamon stick
  • 3 eggs lightly whisked

In a bowl, whisk the sugar and the corn flour together.
In a pan, put the Zest of the oranges with the juice of oranges and lemon. Add the
mixture of sugar and corn flour, and the butter to the pan and bring it to a boil. As soon as it boils, take out of the stove and add the eggs, while stirring.
Put back on the heat still stirring until it thickens.
Then transfer to a container and let it cool down. You can either transfer into a piping bag or just spoon it on the macaroons.

Lavender Macaroons

Lavender Butter Cream

  • 25ml whole milk
  • 1tbsp lavender
  • 250g icing sugar
  • 80g unsalted butter
  • red and blue colorings

In a pan infuse milk and lavender and let them rest then strain the liquid through a sieve.
Whisk the icing sugar and butter until it gets light and fluffy then add the food coloring purple first then blue until you get a nice lavender color.
Incorporate the milk while whisking until fully incorporated and beat for another 5 min until light and fluffy.
Pour in a piping bag and fill the macaroons straight away.
If refrigerated, give it a good whisk before piping.

Lavender Ganache

  • 250g white chocolate
  • 150g whipping cream
  • 2 tsp Lavender

Bring the whipping cream to the boil with the lavender. Leave to infuse for about 10min.                                        Grate the white chocolate and put it into a bowl.
Bring the cream to the boil again and pour it over the white chocolate (use a sieve if you don’t want any lavender bits).
Let it cool down and set before filling the macaroons.

Coffee Macaroons

Coffee Custard Cream

  • 50cl whole milk
  • 15 grams instant coffee
  • 3 eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 50g flour

In a pan bring the milk to a boil and add the instant coffee to dissolve it.
In a bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until it gets white and airy, add the flour and whisk until well incorporated.
While whisking, slowly pour the milk on top of it then pour back in the pan and cook on medium heat until it gets thick and start to boil.
Pour on a tray or in a bowl and cover with cling film to avoid the cream starts to crust. Before piping, give another whisk, pour in a piping bag and fill the macaroons.

Goat’s Cheese and Fig Macaroons

Goat’s Cheese Filling

  • 200g fresh soft goat’s cheese
  • 2 tbsp single cream
  • Fig jam

Soften the goat’s cheese with a fork and a bit of cream. Pour it in a piping bag and pipe a small amount on a shell then create a little hole in the middle of the goat’s cheese by pressing with your finger in order to create space for the fig jam.                                                            Pipe a little fig jam in the hole then cover with the other shell and twist and press at the same time to lock your macaroon.

Version Française : Les Macarons Caramel Beurre Salé

Ingrédients pour le caramel:

  • 80 g de sucre
  • 15 cl de crème liquide
  • 20 g de beurre sale
  • 1 cac de Fleur de Sel
  • 50 g de beurre à température ambiante

Méthode

Verser le sucre dans une casserole de taille moyenne à fond épais pour qu’il recouvre toute la surface. Faites chauffer à feu moyen afin de le transformer en caramel. Le sucre va se diluer et passer d’une couleur blanche transparente à une couleur dorée qui va progressivement brunir.
Ayez votre beurre et votre crème à portée de mains et dès que le caramel prend une couleur dorée profonde, versez la crème en faisant attention car le caramel peut réagir fortement si la crème est encore froide.
Remuez lentement avec une spatule et ajoutez le beurre et la Fleur de Sel. Le caramel va se détendre progressivement puis réduire. Continuez à remuer jusqu’à ce que le caramel épaississe pour prendre une consistance crémeuse.
Laissez refroidir pour éviter de faire fondre le beurre à la dernière étape.
Une fois que le caramel a refroidi, fouettez les 50 g de beurre restant dans le bol de votre Kitchen Aid puis incorporez le caramel. Le caramel va prendre une consistance plus aérienne et blanchir un peu.
Versez directement dans une poche et garnissez les macarons

Ingrédients pour les Coques:

  • 30 g de farine
  • 350 g de sucre glace
  • 212 g d’amandes en poudre
  • 190 g de blancs d’œuf
  • 90 g de sucre
  • Colorant Pâte Marron

Méthode

Préchauffez le four à 180°.

Dans un premier temps, préparez votre matériel, 3 plaques de cuisson couvertes de papier sulfurisé beurré pour mieux adhérer à la plaque ou un tapis en silicone, une poche à douille munie d’une douille 9 et une autre poche pour garnir les macarons.

Ensuite préparez les ingrédients, tamisez le sucre glace, la farine et les amandes puispesez-les et mixez-les dans un grand saladier.

Versez les blancs dans le bol de votre Kitchen Aid et battez-les à vitesse moyenne.

Lorsque les blancs commencent à mousser, ajoutez la moitié du sucre en poudre tout en continuant à battre.

Les blancs vont épaissir et prendre un aspectsoyeux. Ajouter le reste du sucre puis le colorant (préférez le colorant pâteau colorant liquide qui risque d’altérer la consistance du mix). Les blancs sont fermes et soyeux mais faites attention de ne pas trop les battre au risque de les rendre granuleux.

Versez une partie du mix sec sur les blancs et incorporez-le à l’aide d’une large spatuleen prenant soin de bien atteindre le fond du bol. Incorporez le reste du mix et une fois que les blancs sont bien incorporés, versez la préparation dans la poche.

Commencez à dresser les macarons sur les plaques en formant des coques d’environ 3 cm dediamètre (environ 1 cas/coque) en prenant soin de les espacer les unes des autres.

Laissez les coques reposer et « croûter » au moins 20 minutes si ce n’est plusieurs heures. La surface doit devenir plus mat et résister a une légère pression du doigt. Cette étape permet aux macarons de bien gonfler sans que la surface n’éclate à la cuisson.

Enfournez lesplaques pour une durée de 12 minutes puis laissez les coques refroidir avant de les détacher. La coque est cuite mais l’intérieur reste tendre.

Une fois refroidies, vous pouvez garnir les coques avec une généreuse noisette decaramel centrée sur une des coques renversée. Recouvrir d’une autre coque etpressez-la tout en donnant 1/4 de tour afin de répandre la garniture jusqu’au bord des coques.

Conservez les macarons dans une boîte hermétique et au frais.

Lesmacarons se dégustent seulement quelques heures après leur préparation afin que la garniture ait eu le temps d’infuser les coques….

Si, si, je vous assure, vous réussirez à patienter!
Vous pouvez aussi congeler les coques ou les macarons en entier.

Back to School special: Get an healthy start with a Grilled Vegetables Salad

4 Sep

 The sun is gone as well as holidays…. it’s freezing outside and raining sometimes! Perfect time to unfold the luggages, get rid of the sand in your bags, shoes… and have a look at your Autumn-Winter wardrobe to go back to your office!

Depressing? Yes it is! That’s why I have decided to postpone my Brownies & Cupcakes recipes that we are used to see everywhere for the start of the school year! Anyway, shops will propose tons of them at very attractive prices…

You deserve something good but healthy in order to get a fresh start as well as a lovely smile!

For the health, you have the vegetables – grilled – to make them easy to digest, the nuts, full of good oil and the fresh cheese to have lots of energy all day long!

For the taste, beetroot and carrots for the sweet side, fresh cheese for the soft side, nuts or seeds for the crunchy side and herbs for the fresh side….

 

Grilled Beetroot & Carrot Salad with Spices*

INGREDIENTS for 6 people

  • 3-4 raw beetroots
  • 8-10 medium carrots
  • 50ml Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 handful of flat parsley**
  • Balsamic Vinegar or Pomegranate Molasse
  • 200g of Feta optional
  • 1 handful of  flaked almonds, sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds optional


Method

Preheat your oven to 220°

Peel the beetroots, cut the stalks and quickly rinse them under running water to remove any remaining earth. Cut them into 3-4cm chunks.


 

Peel the carrots, cut the stalks and cut them into 3-4cm chunks.

 

 

Place the chunks evenly on a baking tray covered with parchment paper or a silicon mat. Just take care they are not on top of each other otherwise they will boil instead of grill.

Whisk together the olive oil, spices, salt and pepper and spread it generously on top of the vegetables. Make sure they are well coated. Otherwise, you can coat them in a salad bowl first then spread them on a baking tray.

Bake them for about 30-40 minutes, until the edges get grilled and the center of the chunks get cooked (you can insert a skewer without resistance).

 

Let them cool down.

In a frying pan or on a baking tray, toast the almonds or seeds for a few minutes until they get a nice golden colour. Place them in a cold container to prevent them from burning. Then let them cool down. It will release their flavour.

Crumble the feta into 1cm pieces.

Keep 1/3 of the parsley leaves for decoration and roughly chopp the remaining 2/3.

 

 

In a salad bowl, layer 1/3 of the beetroot and carrot chunks, sprinkle with feta crumbles, almonds or seeds, chopped parsley and season with a little olive oil, balsamic vinegar or pomegranate molasse, salt and pepper. Repeat 2 times until you have no more grilled vegetables and decorate with parsley leaves, feta crumbles and toasted almonds or seeds. Season and serve straight away!

*You can serve that dish slightly hot as a side. It is a perfect match with grilled meat or fish (BBQ season is still on!!!). In that case, don’t use any fresh cheese as it will melt.

 

** You can use any herbs you like for that salad and mix them. For example: mint, coriander and chervil.

Version Française :

Salade de Carottes et de Betteraves grillées aux Epices

 Ingrédients : pour 6 personnes

  • 3-4 betteraves crues
  • 8-10 carottes moyennes
  • Huile d’olive
  • 1 cc Cannelle
  • 1 cc Cumin
  • Sel et Poivre
  • 1 poignée de persil plat**
  • Vinaigre Balsamique ou Molasse de Grenade
  • 200g de Feta
  • 1 poignée d’amandes effilées, graines de tournesol ou pépins de courge

Méthode :

Préchauffez votre four à 200°

Epluchez les betteraves, passez-les rapidement sous l’eau si il reste des résidus de terre et coupez les en morceaux d’environ 3-4 cm.

Epluchez les carottes et coupez-les en tronçons de 3-4 cm et en biais.

Disposez les morceaux sans qu’ils se chevauchent sur une plaque recouverte de papier sulfurisé ou d’un tapis en silicone.

Mixez l’huile d’olive, les épices, le sel et le poivre ensemble et verser en filet sur les carottes et les betteraves afin qu’elles soient enduites.

Faites cuire au four environ 30 minutes jusqu’à ce que les bords soient bien grillés et les morceaux cuits.

Laissez reposer jusqu’à refroidissement complet.

Torréfiez les amandes au four ou à la poêle à sec jusqu’à ce qu’elles prennent une jolie couleur dorée. Laissez refroidir.

Diviser la Feta en cubes grossiers d’environ 1cm.

Garder la moitié des feuilles de persil pour la décoration et hachez grossièrement l’autre moitié.

Dans un plat creux, disposez une première couche de betteraves et de carottes,  recouvrir d’une couche de feta, d’amandes et de persil et assaisonnez avec un filet d’huile, de vinaigre ou de molasse ainsi qu’un peu de sel et de poivre.

Continuez ainsi jusqu’à ce que vous ayez tout utilisé et finir avec les feuilles de persil entières, la feta et quelques amandes pour décorer.

Servez.

* Vous pouvez servir cette salade tiède ou chaude en accompagnement d’une viande ou d’un poisson. Dans ce cas, servez-là sans feta qui aurait tendance à fondre.

** Pour cette recette vous pouvez utiliser d’autres herbes telles que la menthe, la coriandre et le cerfeuil qui se marient très bien avec ce plat.

Lemon & Raspberry Ricotta Mousse… so fresh!

16 May

Last Saturday, with my friend Alexia, we were teaching our “Café Gourmand” class at Divertimenti. Our class introduce to individual dessert making that can also  be prepared on smaller sizes in order to get them served altogether as an assortment.

In France it is common to see it called “Café Gourmand” on a Restaurant Menu. “Café Gourmand” is a new trend and alternative as well to dessert. It’s the perfect treat to share with a friend at the end of a lunch when you don’t have that much time ( you have to go back to work!) or because you are not hungry anymore but still feel like having something sweet to finish with….

Usually and depending on the place you are when you order your “Café Gourmand”, you will be served an Espresso with 3 or 4 mini treats. Among those you will find specialties such as Financiers, Madeleines, Macarons, Pana Cotta, Chocolate Truffles, Tartlets.

In our Cafe Gourmand class we have focused on 5 recipes very different from each other in order to work on different techniques:

– the Ricotta Mousse to work on meringue and the use of gelatin in pastry

– the Caramel Cream to work on the caramel, custard and the bain-marie

– the Florentins to work on the shaping

– the Cardamom, Pistachio and Orange Blossom Water Shortbread to work on the rolling and cutting of a dough

– the Chocolate Fondant to work on the timing of the baking

Most of these recipes have already been explained on this blog. That’s why today I will focus on the Ricotta Mousse because Summer time is already there and we need fresh ideas to entertain our friends!

Regarding the Shortbreads, promise… I will try to present the recipe ASAP!

Lemon & Raspberry Mousse

 


Ingredients for the Raspberry Mousse (makes about 4)

  •  80 g ricotta
  • 1 egg
  • 75 g (frozen) raspberries
  • 50 g sugar ( 25 g + 25 g )
  • 3 g gelatin ( 1,5 leaf )

Ingredients for the Lemon Mousse

  • 80 g ricotta
  • 1 egg
  • 30 to 40 ml lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
  • 50 g sugar ( 25 g + 25 g )
  • 3 g gelatin ( 1,5 leaf )

Method for the Raspberry Mousse

Put the gelatin for 10 minutes in cold water. Be careful, gelatin solves very easily, that’s why you have to use very cold water otherwise you might not be able to get it back when you need it!
Mix the raspberries with a blender. If they are frozen, it may look like a granite rather than like a purée but it does not matter as you will cook it later!
In a bowl, beat the egg yolk with 25g of sugar until it gets white and fluffy. Add the raspberry purée and whip the mixture to get an homogeneous texture.
Pour in a small pan and heat the preparation for 2 to 3 minutes while constantly mixing. It will thicken and start to boil.
Off the heat, add the soaked gelatin. Mix well until the gelatin is fully incorporated then pour into a bowl. Add the ricotta and whisk the preparation.
Now prepare the meringue. Beat the egg white while adding gradually the last 25g of sugar. The egg white will get fluffy then smooth and silky. The meringue is ready when it forms soft peaks. With a silicon spatula, delicately incorporate the meringue into the ricotta preparation.
Pour into a jug or piping bag to make it easier then into small glasses or vodka shots and let it rest in a refrigerator for 30 minutes at least.

Method for the Lemon Mousse

The process is almost the same as the raspberry mousse. 

Put the gelatin 10 minutes in cold water.
Beat the egg yolk with 25g of sugar. Add the zest and the lemon juice.
Pour into a small pan and cook the preparation for a few minutes while whisking. The mix will get thick and start to boil.
Take out of the heat, add the soaked gelatin and whisk until incorporated then pour into a bowl. Add the ricotta and mix thoroughly.
Start the meringue. Beat the egg white with the last 25 of sugar until it forms soft peaks then incorporate it delicately to the ricotta mixture.
Fill the glasses up with this mousse then refrigerate for 1 hour.


Ingredients for the Filling & Decorating

  • tapas glasses, wine glasses or vodka shots
  • jugs or piping bags
  • 1 lemon skin (with a peeler)
  • caster sugar
  • fresh raspberries

Method for the Filling & Decorating

As explained before, you can make it easier by using a jug or piping bag especially if you are presenting them in vodka shots.

You can fill the containers within 2 times but if you prepare the mousses at the same time, the consistency is thick enough to spread them on top of each other without getting them mixed.

If using vodka shots, gently tap the bottom of the shot so that the mousse flatten on its surface and if using tapas glasses, give it a rotating shake to flatten it. The best method remains the piping bag anyway!


Peel a lemon then with a sharp knife finely dice the zest.

Rub theices in a glass of caster sugar until they get nicely coated.

Just before serving: spread a little amount on the surface of the mousse, add some raspberries on top then sprinkle some more coated lemon zest on top.

You can serve it with a little biscuit on the side such as a Sablé or an Almond Tuiles.

The Macaroons Class with Sybille

9 Apr

Last Sunday, we were at Divertimenti with my friend Sybille to teach how to make Macaroons.

It’s always a pleasure to meet there, the shop is full of utensils that you’d love to buy if only you had more space in your cupboards….

As it’s not the first time we are teaching that class, we both have our routine and while preparing all the ingredients we take the time to catch up about each other life and new recipes!

I became pretty busy with my twins for the last 8 months and Sybille moved on the east side and became a yoga teacher. Still a chef she wants to create recipes for people who wants to live a healthy and yogi life. Interested in raw food and all the new techniques of dehydration, she writes about her experiences on her blog Living Food and Yoga and also make demonstration at Divertimenti. I tasted some of her raw chocolates and raw cheesecake and I have to say that it’s absolutely delicious even if it’s dairy free which is almost a sin for a french chef!

Anyway, today we are teaching proper French pastry: Macaroons, Financiers and Congolais to 12 students expecting gorgeous macaroons to bring back home. I hope they will be satisfied!

First of all, we introduce them to the core of the subject…. BEING ORGANIZED….! If one thing to remember when cooking, baking…. it’s that one and especially for macaroons otherwise, you’ll turn crazy and never get your macaroons done!

Once they get all the utensils prepared, all the ingredients carefully weighed and classified by trays to distinguish the fillings from the shells ingredients then they can start cooking but at that stage… half of the macaroons method has been explained!


We start with the fillings. We are demonstrating the Caramel Beurre Salé filling then one group at a time they come in front of the other and make another filling such as Mint & Chocolate, Rose & Litchi, Orange & Cinnamon.

That way, they learn to make chocolate filling (ganache), curd and butter cream and back at home, when they fill comfortable with them, they can start trying different flavors.

Once they are done, we pour the fillings in piping bag and store them in the fridge until it’s time to pipe them in the shells.

Speaking of shells, it’s time to talk about piping bag, nozzle, meringue as well as “macaronnage” and “croûtage” (crusting). Within a few minutes, our students will be given the last secrets of the Macaroons!

This is the tough part actually as each group has to work on the consistency of the shells mix. If too liquid, the shells will be as flat as biscuits, if too thick, the shells will never get that nice shape that make them look like pop out of a mold….

Eventually, they all get the right consistency and now they start to enjoy or struggle with the piping bag…. the position, the piping, the twisting, the space in between each shell, the respect of the size…. scared and enthusiast at the same time, we take the time to get each student to understand how to make it right. Eventually each student has made a few perfect shells if not all of them for the best ones!

A few trays later….. no more immaculate aprons but wonderful shells to be!

Now it’s time to let them crust at least 20 minutes if not overnight if they are at home. Also time for a short lunch break before the last recipes of the class: the mini treats.

While that time the shells have crusted and we have baked them, the shells are perfect and as soon as they have cooled down, the last technique is explained: the filling of the shells. First they will match the shells if they are not of the same size…. which never ever happened! Then with the piping bag, they will drop a small amount of filling on a shell then put the other shell on top and twist and press at the same time until the filling appears close to the border.


That’s it! Our students have hundreds of Macaroons ready to take away at one condition…. the hardest one!

Waiting another 24 hour before enjoying the taste of their hard work!

Indeed the macaroons shells are not flavored, it’s the filling that will give the taste to shells after a few hours…. That’s cruel I know but it makes it only better when you had to think about it a whole day!

While some  of the students keep on filling the macaroons shells, the other ones bring the last touch to the mini treats… they dip the bottom of the Financiers or half of the Congolais in melted dark chocolate and let them cool down on a tray…. This is the little details that takes a couple of minutes but makes such a difference!

Here we are, 3 hours 1/2 later and trays full of pastry to bring back home and share with friends or family!!!!

If you want to give it a try….

The Caramel Beurre Salé Macaroons

The Financiers

Dinner Party for Dodgers @ Divertimenti

27 Mar

After many pastry classes at Divertimenti in Marylebone, I had my first “3 courses menu” class at Brompton yesterday!

Luckily we were only 6 and it was very cosy as I decided to stay inside the kitchen in order to see all the students at the same time working on the 5 recipes they had to learn during the class.

The program was based on the idea that you can make a very fine dinner with the basic utensils (knife, chopping board, pan and oven), on a budget and in a hurry!

The menu was the following:

COURGETTES & CARROTS RIBBON SALAD WITH GOATS CHEESE

ROSEMARY & LEMON ROASTED CHICKEN

NEW POTATOES CONFITES

VEGETABLES TIAN

LAVENDER PANA COTTA

ALMOND TUILES


When I am teaching at Divertimenti, I usually arrive at 9 am to prepare all the ingredients and organize the tables for the students (recipe pack, apron, knives, chopping board…)

Getting all the ingredients measured, gathered by recipe and prepared on tray for each group makes my life way easier while I am teaching. You can smoothly switch from one recipe to another without rushing from one part of the kitchen to the cupboard to another part of the kitchen in order to get a knife, a rolling pin or a pan!

Once everything is organized, it’s already 11am and the class is about to start! As I always explain to the students, when you plan to cook, just keep in mind how important it is to be organized and tidy… it will save almost 1/2 of your time!
After a quick introduction with a cup of tea or coffee, the students put on their aprons, wash their hands and then we can start cooking!

The way we work is kind of reverse. With start from the dessert and work out the recipe til the starter. First is the pana cotta as it needs to set a few hours in the fridge then we prepare the chicken marinade to let it rest at least 1/2 hour before it gets in the oven. Next comes the potatoes and the vegetable tian that go straight in the oven with the chicken. Finally we prepare the carrots and courgettes ribbons for the salad and we let them marinate while preparing the almond tuiles mix that will also have to rest 1/4h in the fridge. This is the only exception in our reverse method!

Once all the dishes in the oven have been checked, the surfaces cleaned, we prepare the tuiles trays and bake them.

At that stage, everything is under controlled and almost achieved… Main course is cooked and kept in a hot oven, tuiles are nicely getting an appealing gold color and we just have to work on presentation.

Here it is, nicely dressed on a plate and ready to eat! The team is happy to have succeeded in the making of those 5 recipes and sit around a table to enjoy their lunch.
And as always, we made way too much then I just prepare some take-away boxes for them to go back home and share the fruit of their labor with friends and family!

The class is over…! I am happy to see that they all enjoyed the class and go back home with the resolution to cook a fantastic dinner for their relatives….

If you want to give it a try…. here are the recipes!

Dinner Party for Dodgers recipe pack.