Last summer Graham and I went to NYC to eat, take in a few museums, visit with cousins and eat some more. Graham’s cousin Riad is the executive chef at Pastis and Balthazar (and the author of the The Balthazar Cookbook). It goes without saying that Riad is an amazing culinary guide. I’ve never eaten so well and so much in my entire life!
After a 12 course meal at Devi (you must eat Suvir Saran’s food at least once in your life), Riad took us to meet Johnny Iuzzini, the extraordinary pastry chef at Jean Georges. They worked together at Daniel and Riad wanted to show off Johnny’s talents. We arrived at 11pm and Johnny marched through the dining room carrying 24 desserts. Twenty Four exquisitely plated desserts, plus truffles and other small delicacies he whipped up. They were absolutely gorgeous, so despite the 12 courses we had just consumed, we tasted them all! The perfect evening.
For this month’s Daring Baker Challenge I made White and Black Sesame Tuiles perched on Coconut Ice Cream, all inspired by recipes from Johnny’s new book Dessert FourPlay.
White and Black Sesame Tuile from Dessert FourPlay:
1/3 cup fondant (Johnny has you use Ateco Fondant Mix. Because I made this at the last minute I didn’t have time to order it and made my own, recipe to follow.)
1/4 cup light corn syrup
Scant 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons white and/or black sesame seeds (you can find black sesame seeds at Asian markets. In Johnny’s recipe he calls for flax seeds which sound like a fantastic flavor, but again I was without and I thought the sesame went with the coconut ice cream.)
Special equipment you will need, including what you will want if you make your own fondant:
Put the fondant, corn syrup and butter together in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Once it starts to boil, reduce the heat to low and cook until it is all melted and starts to turn a VERY pale caramel color. VERY LIGHT or your tuile will not be clear in the end! This will take about 10-12 minutes.
Pour the mixture out onto a silpat.
Spread it thin with an Offset Spatula so that it will cool faster. Cool for about 15 minutes, until hard.
Break into small shards. Store in an airtight container or bag.
When you are ready to make your tuile, Preheat your oven to 375°. Take a small amount of the shards and place them in your grinder.
pulverize them into a very fine powder.
Use a sieve to spread the powder over the clean silpat. Make sure the powder is in a fairly thick layer. If it is too thin it will just bead up on the silpat and you will not get a solid piece of tuile.
Sprinkle the sesame seeds evenly over the powder. Bake in the middle of your oven for about 3-5 minutes. Do not let the tuile color. Remove from oven and cool completely. Break the tuile into desired shapes and sizes.
To make poured Fondant for the tuile recipe, from The Cake Bible:
2 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Have your food processor sitting near to the stove fitted with the steel blade.
In a medium size, heavy bottom saucepan combine the sugar, water and corn syrup. Whisk gently together until the mixture starts to boil.
Place the candy thermometer on the side of the pot and continue to cook until the sugar reaches soft-ball stage (238°). Immediately pour it into the food processor. Wash the candy thermometer very well!
Place the candy thermometer back into the hot syrup. If your thermometer isn’t clean you will get crystallization. Allow to cool, uncovered, until the syrup reaches exactly 140°. This will take about 25-35 minutes.
Once it has reached this temperature add your vanilla and process for 2-3 minutes or until fondant becomes white and opaque.
Set a plastic bag inside of a measuring cup. Empty the fondant into the bag. Leave the bag open until the fondant is perfectly cool. When cool, seal the bag and allow to sit for 24 hours at room temperature.
After the 24 hours you can use the fondant in the tuile recipe or for poured fondant to cover petit fours and other pastries. To do that you will need to heat and thin the fondant. I will do that another day!
This month’s Daring Baker challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.
Here are some tuile cups I made with the Michel Roux Chocolate Tuiles.
Preheat the oven to 375° and spread the batter as thinly as you can, but make sure the entire Flexible Bakeware Hemispheres molds is covered. If the tuile batter is too thick it will just run down to the bottom. If this happens, take a spoon and scoop out the excess and continue baking until the bottom is set, about 5-8 minutes.
While the tuile batter is still slightly warm, gently ease out of the mold. Mine just popped right out after I loosened the top.
For the spiral I just used a stencil and then wrapped the tuile around a wooden spoon handle.