My sister got me interested in making the Warm Chocolate Cake because she was always craving it. She always buys it from the store, no matter how many times I tried to convince her to make it herself. I decided to show her how easy it was to make it with simple ingredients that could be found in her kitchen.
In honour of Pancake day yep its a real holiday. Maybe not a public one that gives you time off work but a day for you to celebrate your love for pancakes i'm assuming. Anyway, Our beloved chef Abby, has sent in a pancake recipe to celebrate pancake day and to tie in with the valentines's season. Hope you enjoy it.
Yesterday I had the privilege of showing a couple of kids the advantages of healthy eating and how easy it can be (with the help of their parents of course). I was invited by Chef Charlie Hatney, a friend of mine to assist with the demo.
The event was organized by ACF (American Culinary Federation). Basically, Chefs volunteer to go to schools and show the students how to eat healthy and why healthier options are better for them.
Charlie did the teaching and I did the demo. The kids played a match game using Michelle Obama’s new eating guidelines “MY Plate”
Had an awesome time… Did I mention how much I love kids.
In continuation of my #FOODPORN picture from the last post, I have decided to post pictures of some of the desserts I took.
Thanks to my lovely sister, I have a wonderful camera (Sony NEX 5) which takes amazing pictures (need to learn how to use all the different options). I always wanted a professional camera to take picture of my desserts because cell phones don’t do them justice when it came to bringing a dessert to life (like the half eaten Macaron). This time I bring you Pot de Crème.
See pot de crème as crème brulee without the brulee.
Pot de Crème meaning “Pot of Cream”, which is baked custard. It’s in the same category as crème brulee, crème caramel (flan). These custards consist of very simple ingredients which include but not limited to: whole eggs or yolks, sugar and milk.
Making custard with these simple ingredients may look effortless but very easy to mess up because of the technique of tempering. “Tempering: refers to heating gently and gradually; the process of slowly adding a hot liquid to eggs to raise the temperature without them causing them to curdle”
The trick is to slowly drizzle the hot milk or cream into the egg mixture while whisking. Whisk about 1/3 of the milk into the egg mixture and then whisk the egg mixture into the remaining milk. Do this on a low flame or heat to avoid curdling.
After getting through the hurdle of tempering, you should remember to bake the custard in a water bath (bain-marie). This should protect the eggs from curdling while in the oven. The end product should be smooth.
Below are pictures and a recipe. Send me a picture of your end product.
BAILEY’S CHOCOLATE POT DU CRÈME
Milk 500 g
Chocolate 64% 240 g
Sugar 210 g
Coffee Extract 1.5 teaspoons (Substitute any extract)
Bailey’s Liqueur 30 g (Optional)
Egg yolks 140 g
Whipped Cream 250 g
Chocolate Straws 10
- Weigh out all your ingredients; place 8 (4 oz) ramekins in hotel pan
- Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F
- Melt Chocolate in microwave (10 sec increments to avoid burnt chocolate)
- Heat milk just to simmer. Add 150 g of sugar.
- Take off heat and stir in chocolate, vanilla and liqueur.
- Whisk the egg yolks and remain sugar together in a bowl.
- Slowly whisk in the chocolate mixture.
- Strain and pour the custard evenly into the ramekins, preferably 3/4 full.
- Add enough water in the hotel pan to reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
- Place hotel pan in oven
- Bake for 30 minutes or until the center is almost set.
- When done, let cool at room temperature no more than an hour.
- Take out of the water bath and refrigerate until completely chilled.
- Garnish with whipped cream, raspberry and chocolate (or as you desire)
I enjoy following Chefs and Pastry chefs on twitter.
I randomly came across a Pastry Chef “Chef Chris Ford“. Never met him or heard about him but I was a big fan the moment I went to his blog “http://ButterLoveandHardwork.com”. The pictures on there got to me & the photographer in me that refuses to surface.
Looking through the pictures on his blog I started falling more in-love with desserts and it pushed me to make my desserts ALWAYS look “photo ready”. What got me was the simplicity of the dessert/ ingredient he took, yet it looked more.
The picture that got to me the most was one of a half eaten Macaron (you all know how I feel about MACARONS), I loved the picture so much, and I used it as the background picture for my computer &cell phone. Another pastry item he took was the Pate a Choux (Cream Puff). Every chef knows how simple of a pastry it is and for someone to get excited about a “cream puff” makes no sense. Chef Chris posted several Choux picture, a video “rise of the choux” and recipe, of which I also used as a background picture (the Macaron and Choux where my background pictures for a long time).
With my job at the time, I was privileged to make different desserts for the lunch buffet which gave me the ability to start making picture quality desserts. One of which I posted below with the recipe.
This dessert was made for a dessert contest organized by Chef Chris and Four Seasons Baltimore on Facebook . Send me a picture when you attempt the dessert.
BRIOCHE BREAD PUDDING:
Brioche bread, day old 720 g
Heavy cream 2 qt
Eggs 6 eggs
Granulated sugar 780 g
Vanilla extract 30 ml
Frangelico 120 ml
Chocolate chips 240 g
-Preheat oven to 350f
-Dice brioche into 1/2 cubes
-Place on a sheet pan and toast for 10mins or light brown, then place in large bowl
-Whisk eggs in a bowl
-Heat cream and sugar in sauce pan and simmer.
-Take off heat, add vanilla and frangelico
-Add hot cream to eggs while whisking.
-Pour mixture over bread, mix together (Make sure bread is soaked)
-Fold in chocolate chips.
-Place mixture in a pan and top with streusel
-Bake for 45mins or until golden brown on top.
Sugar 500 g
Flour 500 g
Hazelnut flour 250 g
Butter, cold 500 g
-Combine all dry ingredients.
-With a paddle attachment, mix butter with dry mix and butter.
-Mix until butter is incorporated and looks like panko bread crumbs.
VANILLA BEAN ICE CREAM:
Whole milk 1.5 qt
Heavy cream 480 ml
Vanilla Bean, split 1
Egg yolks 300 g
Granulated sugar 600 g
-Bring milk, cream and scrapped vanilla bean to boil in a saucepan
-Whisk egg yolk and sugar until pale.
-Stir 1/3 of boiled milk into egg mixture.
-Return egg mixture into pan with remaining milk and heat.
-Stir constantly with a rubber spatula until mixture reaches 180F – 185F.
-Remove from heat and strain into a clean bowl.
-Quickly chill over ice bath to 40F
-Refrigerate ice cream base overnight.
-Next day, churn ice cream base till soft serve or as directed by manufacturer.
Granulated sugar 300 g
Egg yolk 12 eggs
Frangelico 50 ml
Half and Half 1 qt
-Heat half and half in sauce pan
-Whisk sugar and eggs together in bowl
-Temper egg mixture with hot half and half.
-Constantly stir over medium heat until thick enough to coat back of spoon (don’t boil)
-Take off heat as soon as sauce thickens, then add frangelico.
-Strain into clean bowl and chill over ice bath.