Plating a dessert is never something easy for me to do..i mean how often do i make a dessert and then plating or arranging it with all the different components? Never. That is the theme of this month's Aspiring Baker's Event - Desserts on a Plate. While making some of the components may not be too complicated, it's actually how we match each of the flavours of the components and what comes with what and arranging them that is really cracking my head. This may be an easy peasy job for a chef to to do it but for me, not easy man! I mean it's really rare for me to prepare desserts on a plate like this, not even on special occasions or friends coming over for meals or what. This is really to participate to support all the hosts!I'm glad that i found a recipe on Masterchef Au website, a recipe that i have all the ingredients ready and happy that it's just a very small recipe. It's made up of 3 components or maybe 4 if we consider the candied orange as another component.
Main: chocolate semifreddo
2nd component : chestnut creme
3rd component : caramel orange
4th component : candied oranges
|the block of semifreddo. the white thing you see there is not nuts..it's a sign of the folding of the cream|
not properly done!!
|the semifreddo was cut lengthwise and i got about 4 slices of this size.|
It's my first time making a semifreddo. Not sure if I got it right but it's like ice cream when it's hard and when it gets softer, is like mousse. I dont know, maybe there were something somewhere i didnt do it quite right, it was not really smooth but i still enjoyed eating that, just like eating a block of chocolate ice cream! The chestnut creme wasnt too bad, just a little sweet for me.
|chestnut puree got it from hkg last year..no, not expired yet.|
wonder when can i be able to finish the whole jar?
|my chestnut creme is melting..but the semifreddo seems okay, still tolerating...|
Recipe ( from masterchef.com.au with minor modifications )
Chocolate Semifreddo ( made in a 7" x3"x2.5" tin) i made this 2 days ahead
4eggs, separated ( i used pasteurised eggs )
100ml hazelnut liquer ( i used 20ml rum and dilute in 80ml water )
5-6 tbsps hot water
175gm caster sugar ( I used 125 gm, see my notes * )
50gm cocoa powder, sifted
100gm dark couverture chocolate, finely chopped
150ml dairy cream, whipped to soft peak
1/2 tsp of cream of tartar ( I added this to beat the egg whites)
3 tbsps of sweetened chestnut puree
150ml dairy cream, whipped to soft peak
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 orange, peeled into chunks ( i segment it )
juice of 1 orange ( i skipped )
Candied oranges ( easy recipe from foodandwine.com )
1.Line your tin with clingwrap. For semifreddo, whisk egg yolks, liquer , hot water and 50gm sugar in a large metal bowl over bain marie until mixture starts to thicken.Whisk in cocoa powder, remove from heat, whisk in chocolate and whisk until mixture is cool.
2.Place 75gm sugar and a little water in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves, increase heat to high and cook until syrup reaches 121C on a candy thermometer. Meanwhile whisk 4 egg whites together with cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric mixer until soft peaks. While whisking,slowly pour in hot sugar syrup in a thin stream and whisk on high speed until mixture is thick and shiny.
3.Whisk half of the meringue into the chocolate mixture. Gently fold in the 2nd half of the meringue. Fold cream through.Pour into the prepared tin, tap gently and smooth top.Cover and freeze for 1.5 hrs or until firm.
4. For chestnut creme, whisk chestnut puree and whipped cream until well combined, refrigerate until required.
5.For orange caramel, place sugar in a large frying pan an dplace over medium high heat. Agitate until sugar melts and begins to caramelise.Allow to form a thick caramel, it will turn dark reddish brown and remove from heat. Pour in the orange juice and orange segments, tossing to coat and allow to steep in caramel. ( I skipped the orange juice )
6. Cut a slice out from the semifreddo and assemble the rest of the components on a plate and serve.
* notes: original recipe indicates 175gm sugar but 50gm sugar is missing from the recipe so i just used 125gm total in all.
This post is linked to the Cook Like A Star Event ( Masterchef) hosted by Zoe, together with Anuja of simple baking and Baby Sumo from Eat Your Heart Out
and also submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers #23 - Desserts on a Plate ( September 2012 ) hosted by Swee San of The Sweet Spot