Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Tasting That Couldn't

Chocolate Pavé with Cardamom Ice Cream and Candied Kumquats
ipe below)

I started to feel intense aversion for the interviewing process a while ago (or is loathing too big of a word?) when I realized that my strong desire to work at a certain restaurant didn't correlate with their perception of my skills. I recently had yet another interview followed by an invitation to bring a tasting of two desserts, a chocolate and a fruit one. I couldn't decide what to bring so I finally settled on four desserts. The chocolate pavé is one of my favorite chocolate cakes, I discovered it about five years ago when I bought Room for Dessert by David Lebovitz, and to this day I never get tired of it. Because the chocolate flavor is so predominant I highly recommend using a high quality chocolate. I normally make it with Scharffen-Berger, my absolute favorite.
Note that I am having a hard time taking pictures of plated desserts, I haven't found the right spot and the ice cream kept melting before I even had time to take enough pictures. Who said that taking pictures of food is easy. The experimenting continues....

Apple Galette with Frangipane Filling Served with Cinnamon Ice Cream and Caramel Sauce

Ginger Créme Brulée with Ginger Snaps and Raspberries

Plate of Assorted Cookies*

Needless to say I didn't get the job. Apparently everything tasted good but it wasn't exactly what they were looking for. I could elaborate more but what's the point? I want to share recipes, so here they are.

Chocolate Pavé
adapted from "Room for Dessert"

4 oz. bittersweet chocolate (62%)
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate (99%)
1/2 pound (8 oz.) butter
6 eggs, separated, at room temperature
1/2 plus 1/2 cup of sugar

Melt the butter and the chocolate in a double boiler. Separate the eggs. Beat the yolks with half the sugar until foamy, and fold in the melted chocolate and butter. In the meantime, whip the whites with the other half of the sugar until medium peak form (DO NOT over mix the whites otherwise the cake will turn thin and very wet). Fold the whites carefully into the chocolate-egg mixture. Pour onto a well buttered and paper-lined cake pan (at least 9" if not 10" in diameter). Bake at 350 until done (the center should be firm). The cake suffles and it will start shrinking as soon as it starts cooling. To avoid cracking of the margins, push the edges in as soon as it comes out of the oven.

Cardamom Ice Cream
adapted from Blue Ginger

1 cup of milk
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
3/4 sugar
6 cardamom pods, crashed
pinch of salt
5 yolks

Scald the milk and the cream with the sugar and steep with the cardamom for an hour. After an hour re-heat the milk to scalding point and slowly add to the yolk to temper (if the milk and cream are at the boiling point there is no need to custard the yolks, they will cook with the heat of the milk and cream). Strain the custard and chill immediately. Churn into ice cream according to your ice cream maker.

* checkerboard sablées, almond cocoa nib sticks, korova cookies, ginger snaps, and pecan shortbread cookies

1 comment:

Lien said...

What a shame you didn''t get the job. I'd eat each and every one of your desserts and pay for them too!


Related Posts with Thumbnails