Amici, eccoci finalmente tornati in pista, anzi ai fornelli, con la ricetta dei Daring Bakers di Agosto.
Stavolta io e Manuel ce la siamo proprio vista brutta: la sfida richiedeva di preparare questa specie di torta gelato ricoperta di cioccolato, che col caldo milanese non è esattamente la cosa più facile del mondo.
Tuttavia, in qualche modo ce la siamo cavata, e ora vi racconto come. In inglese, of course: so che potete farcela a leggere!
The August 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Elissa of 17 and Baking. For the first time, The Daring Bakers partnered with Sugar High Fridays for a co-event and Elissa was the gracious hostess of both. Using the theme of beurre noisette, or browned butter, Elissa chose to challenge Daring Bakers to make a pound cake to be used in either a Baked Alaska or in Ice Cream Petit Fours. The sources for Elissa’s challenge were Gourmet magazine and David Lebovitz’s “The Perfect Scoop”.
Manuel and I chose to prepare Ice Cream Petit Fours, which were supposed to be tiny cake slices with ice cream inside and chocolate outside.
The first thing to do is to prepare the ice cream.
Elissa gave us a recipe for vanilla ice cream.
- 250 ml of whole milk
- a pinch of salt
- 165 g of sugar
- 10 ml of pure vanilla extract
- 500 ml of heavy cream
- 5 large egg yolks
Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a medium saucepan until the liquid steams, then let cool to room temperature.
Set up an ice bath by placing a 2-quart (2 litre) bowl inside a large bowl partially filled with water and ice. Put a strainer on top of the smaller bowl and pour in the cream.
In another bowl, lightly beat the egg yolks together. Reheat the milk in the medium saucepan until warmed, and then gradually pour ¼ cup warmed milk into the yolks, constantly whisking to keep the eggs from scrambling. Once the yolks are warmed, scrape the yolk and milk mixture back into the saucepan of warmed milk and cook over low heat. Stir constantly and scrape the bottom with a spatula until the mixture thickens into a custard which thinly coats the back of the spatula.
Strain the custard into the heavy cream and stir the mixture until cooled. Add the vanilla extract and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, preferably overnight. Eventually, freeze in an ice cream maker.
Our Italian friends might like to follow the link to my gelato al fiordilatte, which is a lot easier to make and still totally delicious.
Once you’re done with the ice cream, you should prepare the brown butter pound cake.
- 275 g of unsalted butter
- 200 g of sifted cake flour
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 110 g of packed light brown sugar
- 75 g of granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 325°F/160°C and put a rack in the center. Butter and flour a 23cmx23cm square pan.
Place the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Brown the butter until the milk solids are a dark chocolate brown and the butter smells nutty. Pour into a shallow bowl and chill in the freezer until just congealed, 15-30 minutes.
Whisk together cake flour, baking powder, and salt.
Beat the brown butter, light brown sugar, and granulated sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well, and then the vanilla extract.
Stir in the flour mixture at low speed until just combined.
Scrape the batter into the greased and floured square pan. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula and rap the pan on the counter. Bake until golden brown on top and when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes.
Cool in the pan 10 minutes. Run a knife along the edge and invert right-side-up onto a rack to cool completely.
Ice cream and cake where very easy to make, but I’ve had some issues with the chocolate glaze, because I ran out of cream so I used milk and butter instead, which was not a brilliant idea, but never mind.
The original chocolate glaze recipe calls for
- 250 g of dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 250 ml of heavy cream
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of Golden syrup
- 10 ml of vanilla extract
Stir the heavy cream and light corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add the dark chocolate. Let sit 30 seconds, then stir to completely melt the chocolate. Stir in the vanilla and let cool until tepid before glazing the petit fours.
When everything is ready, it’s time to assembly our petit fours.
Line a 23cmx23cm pan with plastic wrap, so that no sides of the pan are exposed and so there is some extra plastic wrap hanging off the sides. Spread 450ml ice cream into the pan, cover with more plastic wrap and freeze several hours.
Once the brown butter pound cake has completely cooled, level the top with a cake leveler or a serrated knife. Then split the cake in half horizontally to form two thin layers.
Unwrap the frozen ice cream, flip out onto one of the layers of cake and top with the second layer of cake. Wrap well in plastic wrap and return to the freezer overnight.
When the cake is frozen, cut it into squares, each more or less 4cmx4cm.
Glaze the petit fours one at a time: place a petit four on a fork and spoon chocolate glaze over it.
Move the petit fours on a parchment-lined baking sheet and return to the freezer for one hour.
Our final result was not exactly perfect and good looking, due to the chocolate glaze disaster, but I assure you that the ice cream petit fours where delicious and definitely worth the effort.
Another brilliant Daring Bakers experience!