Enough of macarons now. I’m going to give that topic a break and come back to the original cakes and other desserts. Plated desserts are such a fun thing to play with. It’s just like making entremets, different textures and pairing flavours. But with the plated desserts, you can play with even more textures. I will be making more plated desserts next when I’m fully settled down in the new house. (read: beautiful sunlight, ample working space) I still have yet to utilize some of the new books I’ve just bought (and old books as well).
Anyway, there are a few things quite impromptu in this dessert, hence I don’t have a recipe for it. It’s just work by instinct.
Elements on this plate:
Ginger beer cake
Fresh sugar apricots
crumbled pate sucree with toasted almonds
They aren’t complicated things, just a simple gingerbeer cake, and a very easy pear sorbet. I envisioned the plate to be warm / autumish (although apricots aren’t really autumn fruits tsk tsk)
And if you’re wondering why on earth I suddenly make plated desserts, it’s due to too much MasterchefAU (made this a couple of months ago) and how these regular, amateur home cooks are able to churn out such beautiful plated desserts. I am going to do the Corn dessert in one of the Masterclass and the caramelized white chocolate dessert from Kate. Long story short, just wanna relive some LCB days 😉
Oh looking at this picture, I did a gingerbeer jelly as well but I somehow got the ratio wrong and ended with soupy jelly, kinda eeeky if you ask me. So I had to take another plate and try a different plating. Same components, just different shape of cakes and different plating.
For the gingerbeer cake baked it in different pan sizes as I had a couple of ideas of plating them. (Yes I did sketch out on a paper on how to plate it, and what elements should compliment it)
(can’t remember where I adapted it from..)
260g plain flour
140g caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
125g buttermilk (used 60g yogurt and 65mk milk)
1. Preheat oven to 160 C and line cake pans with parchment paper. I used 3 different types of small pans and some cupcake moulds. If you want to make into a whole cake, use a 7″ cake pan.
2. Melt butter in a small saucepan, and add in gingerbeer. Set aside.
3. In a mixing bowl, mix in flour, molasses, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
4. Add in freshly grated ginger, melted butter and gingerbeer into the flour and mix till combined.
5. Lastly, pour in buttermilk and egg.
6. Pour into pans and bake till done (about 30 mins, or more depending on the size of pan)
Pear Sorbet (Sorbet aux poires)
adapted from here
350g ripe pears, peeled and cored
15ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
1. Purée the pears in a food processor until smooth. Add the sugar and lemon juice, process until combined. Pass through a sieve into a different container.
2. Chill the mixture for at least 2 hours. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
As for the recipe for caramel sauce and crumbled pate sucre, It was more impromptu. Cooked caramel and added some cream to make it smooth. Then for the crumbles, I had leftover frozen pate sucre (sweet shortcrust pastry). I grated it while its still frozen, and put to bake. When it’s halfway done, i tossed in chopped almonds and let them bake together, till brown. They make a good ‘soil’ for textural contrast.
I adore grey plates now. Hahaha.. Before I forget, I’m not really good in explaining how you should plate this. There really is not direction or method in plating it, just follow your heart and make it look pretty. Have a balance of each item, diferent colours, different textures and don’t forget to add some micro greens at the end. If the ‘soil’ is meant to scatter around, let it scatter and don’t be so pedantic about it, it should look natural and free 😉
Cheers and till then