Thursday, 9 July 2015

Delice au Tokaji

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I've had a bottle of Tokaji Aszu 2008 sitting around the house for the past couple of years. In fact, I bought it for this particular recipe from Michel Roux Jr's 'Le Gavroche Cookbook' so finally, I've managed to get around to making it.

The recipe is a Delice, somewhere between ice cream and a parfait, consisting of marinated prunes in Tokaji wine and double cream combined with a pate a bombe (egg yolks beaten with hot sugar syrup).

Apologies for the lack of photos during the production process as my phone has been playing up of late, in addition to that I had finished work around 2300 on the night I was due to make the Delice so tiredness + lack of photographic equipment in sound working order = no chance of photography.

I will share with you however that it is pretty straightforward. After marinating prunes in the Tokaji wine for a week (and that's no typing error!) you slice up around 4-6 of them into fine dice and reserve the rest in the fridge. Combine whipped cream with the egg yolk and sugar mix with the prunes and a touch of the wine marinade and the mix is created.

Gently pressing the mixture into ring moulds set on a cling-film lined plate and placing in the freezer for 24 hours completes the Delice prep. Quite a handy dessert to make ahead of time.

On the day of serving I had to do battle with a nemesis of mine, tuiles. Now I've not had the best of luck in the past with these things. Everything from sticking to bending or the end result being too thick and therefore more of a sponge base than a biscuit, its all happened. So tentatively I set about mixing together honey, brown sugar and butter in a pan until melted and adding flour and egg whites once cooled to form the batter.

To me with the measurements given in the book, the mixture appeared far too loose, barely spreadable, so I added a touch more flour until I was happy with the consistency. Chill the mix for an hour in the fridge to firm up enough to be spread while the oven heats up.

The first couple of batches of tuiles were that of the past, flimsy, thick and not willing to play ball. The third attempt yielded better results as I spread the mixture so thin you could barely tell it existed on the bake-o-glide.

Once out of the oven I instantly pressed out two circles with a pastry cutter and removed from the tray, delight as they crisped up to perfection, one even had a piece sticking out from the bottom to hold it in the Delice!

Time to plate up. Removing the Delice's from the ring moulds wasn't too tricky with the blowtorch, a dusting of icing sugar gave a more uniformed appearance. I blitzed 4-5 remaining prunes to make a sauce to accompany the dish and arranged the remaining whole prunes around each dessert. A tuile crowned the top and finished the dish.

With plating the dish so carefully it gave valuable time for the Delice to soften, giving great texture. The alcohol soaked prunes are the predominant flavour and a great one at that. The tuile was delicious, perfectly crispy, the sauce could have been sieved perhaps but that's being picky. Great dessert and enjoyed by all.

The final plate

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