My New Favourite Slice

Yesterday I made my version of The Global Vegan’s Peanut Butter Crackle Slice ( I have an allergy to peanuts so used almond butter/paste). This is my new go to, must have dessert/snack/slice.  Sweet but with only a 5 dates for sweetness, a little salt to balance, cranberries and coconut for contrast in texture and a little more sweetness,  crunch – the puffed rice and the coconut oil or cocoa butter to hold all together and I used 70% cacao dark chocolate to melt and put on top. This is a raw slice so aside from the melting of chocolate and oils no cooking required – just pop in the freezer for an hour or two.  This is divine! Dairy free, gluten free, processed sugar free, it has a good wack of protein and good oils.  Perfect!

Chocolate, Cherries and Nougat: Organum – Peter Gilmore

organum_cover

Images and recipes from Organum by Peter Gilmore (Murdoch Books) $59.99

Chocolate, Cherries, Nougat

PREPARATION / 1 DAY

SERVES / 8

 

“Cherries, nougat and chocolate. The combination is something you just want to eat, delicious and straightforward.” (p.194)

 

01

Chocolate & cherry sorbet

500 ml (17 fl oz) strained unsweetened cherry juice

160 g (5¾ oz) caster (superfine) sugar

20 g (¾ oz) liquid glucose

325 ml (11 fl oz) water

20 g (¾ oz) Valrhona cocoa powder

15 g (½ oz) Amedei Chuao (extra dark chocolate 70%), finely chopped

 

Place the cherry juice in a small saucepan and reduce by half over medium heat. Combine the reduced cherry juice with the remaining ingredients in a clean saucepan. Bring to the boil, whisking constantly. Remove from heat. Put the mixture in a blender and blend well. Pour through a fine sieve. Allow to cool completely, then churn in an ice-cream machine. Freeze until required. Makes about 500 g (1 lb 2 oz).

 

02

Soft chocolate ganache

50 g (13/4 oz) Valrhona Manjari
64% chocolate

50 g (13/4 oz) Amedei Chuao (extra dark chocolate 70%)

125 ml (4 fl oz) pure cream (35% fat)

25 g (1 oz) unsalted butter, diced,
at room temperature

 

Finely chop the chocolate and combine in a heatproof bowl. Bring the cream to just below boiling point and pour over the chocolate, stirring until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth. Cool the chocolate until it reaches 30°C (86°F) and whisk in the butter until well incorporated, smooth and glossy. This ganache is used at room temperature and will need to be made 2 hours prior to plating the dessert to allow it to cool down
to room temperature.

 

03

Caramelised almonds

100 g (3½ oz) caster (superfine) sugar

50 g (1¾ oz) blanched almond kernels, well roasted

 

Put the caster sugar in a saucepan with enough water to just wet and dissolve the sugar. Cook over medium–high heat until it reaches an even golden caramel. Remove from heat. Add the roasted almonds then remove each almond individually with a fork and place on a tray lined with a silicone baking mat. Allow almonds to cool completely. Store in an airtight container until required.

 

04

Dried cherry, nougat & caramelised almond mixture

50 g (1¾ oz) dried sour cherries, roughly chopped

50 g (1¾ oz) caramelised almonds
(see above), roughly chopped

50 g (1¾ oz) nougat (see Basic Recipes), roughly chopped

 

Combine the cherries, almonds and nougat. Weigh 50 g (1¾ oz) of this combined mixture and set aside in an airtight container for the chocolate bark recipe below. Store the remaining 100 g (3½ oz) in a separate airtight container until required.

 

05

Dried cherry, nougat & caramelised almond chocolate bark

100 g (3½ oz) Valrhona Manjari
64% chocolate

50 g (1¾ oz) dried cherry, nougat
and caramelised almond mixture (see above)

 

Line a tray with silicone paper. Melt the chocolate over a water bath and allow to cool slightly. Add the dried cherry, nougat and caramelised almond mixture. Quickly mix and spread out on the lined tray into as thin a layer as possible. Refrigerate the bark until required.

 

06

Compressed cherries

50 g (1¾ oz) caster (superfine) sugar

200 ml (7 fl oz) freshly squeezed Bing cherry juice, from approximately 400 g (14 oz) fresh bing cherries

16 large whole fresh Bing cherries

 

Combine the sugar and cherry juice and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Cut the cherries in half around the stone, then twist to separate the two halves and carefully remove the stone with the point of a small, sharp knife.

Put the cherry halves in a cryovac bag with the sweetened cherry juice. Compress and seal the bag in a vacuum machine. Put the cherries into the refrigerator and keep the bag sealed for at least 4 hours to allow the cherries to macerate.

 

07

TO FINISH

Remove the cherries from the cryovac bag and carefully slice them into thin discs. Put the cherry discs back into the juice until required. Remove the dried cherry, nougat and caramelised almond chocolate bark from the refrigerator and use a sharp knife to cut it into thin strips.

 

08

TO PLATE

1/2 quantity vanilla custard cream (see basic recipes)

 

Place half a teaspoon of room-temperature chocolate ganache in the centre of each serving plate and spread out with the back of a spoon. Place 2 teaspoons of the vanilla custard cream on the ganache. Place a few strips of the chocolate bark on top of the cream. Top with a couple of teaspoons of the reserved cherry, nougat and caramelised almond mixture. Add a few discs of the compressed cherries. Layer with more room-temperature chocolate ganache, chocolate bark and cherry, nougat and caramelised almond mixture. Finish with a few more compressed cherry discs and a scoop of the chocolate cherry sorbet. Serve.

cherries chocolate

 

 

One Pot Chicken With Smoked Spices: Secrets From My Indian Family Kitchen – Anjali Pathak

Another simple, quick and delicious recipe from my new favourite recipe book…my twist was to use home grown purple skinned white fleshed sweet potatoes rather than potatoes (It is what I had available – the gardener picked them for me 5 minutes before I added to the pot)  Photographer could do with taking a bit more care! 🙂 But yummy all the same.

 

IMG_2778

One Pot Chicken With Smoked Spices