OMG! Its Christmas again… again… and again… my head is full of thoughts – lot of things just happened in the last few days. Dont know whats going on at the moment… really need to chill out a bit. Thanx Jill – as Marty mentioned before – we are not going to spend the december on the street – we can move to this beautiful flat next week – wow, thats gonna be another big hassle… hate it already, but i will love the new place. No naked indian professor running up and down, no curry smell for weeks, no occupied bathroom for hours and no mass… can`t wait. We wont have time to open any of the boxes there i guess, we ll be just that busy in the job – which i like sooo much, cause i have no time to think at least about other private stuff… but the Christmas is here – time to pamper ourself a bit – leave more freedom, spend more money, smile more times and love more than u would do in a simple rainy monday afternoon… :) and of course: drink more nice stuff, eat more quality food, u will have plenty time in january to worry about the calories.
Im just lying on my bed and watching the pictures what we made with Marty in the last year… all of theme are about food or drink obviously, and they all have there own little stories, memories… and i can share the best sweety ones, cause they are deserve to being tried by u as well… cause its Christmas, and nothing is better than a bit of self-indulgence…
As u should realize by this time, that i always like to give a crazy kick to every dish i create, if i `kind of copy` something, i make sure, it has to be a massive twist somewhere by my mental mind. The best result of this is nothing else or more, but a simpliest, most foolish bread and butter pudding i ve just recreate… actually, i think we just made a really luxury version of it and plated up in a `spot on` way… just check it out.
Basic formula: get the bread, milk and cream, eggs, lots of sugar and whatever else u fancy (usually nothing more than raisins). Mix together well till reach an almost fluid texture, tray – paper – oven till the surface become gold. Voila. Such a challenge to do something really special with this boring baby. And i ve just got a bottle of Guiness, nice dark chocolate, toasted some nuts, bought a tin of crunchy peanut butter and sprikle with lots of love and vanilla salt of course… it became a dream. The beer made it so airy with a hint of bitterness, nice earthy flavour from the home-made brown bread, crispy bits of the nuts but silky cause of the peanut butter… just amazing.
For some extra, serving with white chocolate sauce
with almond flakes and deep-dark chocolate ganache.
(The white decoration meant to be a leaf, but i had
a really `good eater` boyfriend at that time,
who never asked just after… )
Exactly one year ago… feast time. Another oldschool stuff… which is just perfect, while u are struggling with the lights and the stupid decoration trying to hang them up to your little amorphous tree but the mass is just getting bigger and bigger. Thats the point when u need a drink. A nice one. A really nice egg-nogg.
First time, when i put all the ingredients together… was questioning myself. Dont worry. Just dont. Just try. Basically u need to whisk already separated eggs with sugar and after fold under carefully. U have some whipped cream as well, stir in. The alcohol… a lot. I use the same amount of each (eg, 1 cup): white rum, whiskey or brandy – or your favourite – and milk. Fold in – everything together. For an extra flavour, u can infuse your milk with anything before, just warm through with some cinnamon, star anise or szechuan pepper. Good kick – not suggested in family events. Nice touch. Easy going drink, careful and Merry Christmas! :P
Lets stay a bit longer in last year… i remember, Marty was having a kind of serious cold or some other nasty illness that time [f*g worst sinus infection ever – M.] so she was absolutely unable to feel any flavour, taste anything. Poor thing, i was working soo hard with our Christmas menu, that was the first time when i was trying the sous vide technology at home with a pair of guinea fowl breast – running to the kitchen to check the temperature every five minutes… was funny, at the end the meat was beyond expression. And the pudding also – however, Marty will never know, how good it was.
[Do you remember our pinenut-poisoning? When we had that shit bitter taste in our mouth for a whole week? Well, that wasn’t one-hundreth time as bad as that sinusitis last year at Christmas…! – M.]
I made a cold souffle with poppy seed and lime… yummmmmy. Soak gelatine in cold water – get some yolks, heat up gently with cream, yoghurt, poppy seed, lime juice and zest – add the gelatine and leave to cool down. Whipp the whites with some sugar and fold in. Whipp some more cream with sugar and fold as well. Take your ramekins, fill them up and leave in the fridge to set. Easy – its more a kind of creamy mousse than a real souffle, the lime works absolutely well with the poppy seed – especially if you infuse your cream first with – just let it boil (not burn!) for a few minutes and cool down. Your `opium juice` will be mindblowing! The dressing was a light lemon vinaigrette with candied tangerine and a sugarwork for decoration. Ohhhh, i remember now, that time i was working in my favourite Champagne and Oyster Bar – one day we had a champagne tasting when i fall in love with a beautiful rose one… U can see it at the background – i needed to buy a bottle – which was 5times more expensive, than our whole christmas feast! Was it worth it? Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeees.:)
I’m sure the Ruinart was a good one.. :-| M.
Our favourite ingredient is still the chocolate – thats what i used a lot when i was experimenting with a french recipe: chocolate coulant. The word itself means `runny` or `easy going` what we can understand considering the dessert itself, which is a `fondant` practically with nice slimy middle. :) Personally i hate to make fondants, because everyhting is depending on your oven, your temperature and your feelings, when do u need to take out to have it baked outside but runny inside… so i found a way to cheat. I make a stuffing, and i freeze it down. So when it goes to the owen, the stuffing melt – this will give you the stickiness, even if your overcook a bit. It is great – i know :))) and my favourite flavour combo is the coffee-dark chocolate-blue cheese. Make a `kind of simple` ganache with infuse your cream with coffee beans, espresso, melt the choc and the cheese in – finally freeze it down. Leave your fondant as simple as u can – the stuffing will do the job, try just a basic choc recipe, when u whipp your yolks with sugar, melt your choc and butter together, mix and sift the flour in. Job done, but dont forget to put butter and flour in your ramekins before! :)
OMG… we have so many favourites. I love the puddings, probably cause i have a quite sweet palette and i use any kind of sweet in every dish to reach a nice balance. And there is such a big freedom to do whatever u fancy – make a seriously heavy choc-truffle tart using portobello mushrooms and sweet cherries in the middle with cherry jelly…
I think i am in this naughty mood now, cause i was making huge amount of gorgeous icecreams and sorbets in this week in the restaurant with unbelievable flavours such as Mars and Snickers bar, christmas pudding, mulled wine, i made cute pink marshmallow and after icecream of it, Scotty`s Sweet Shop Terrine full of foolish candies and bars, and the invention of the century, Samuel`s Haribo rum jelly… Or a silly simple brownie with a beetroot twist in it…
i guess… its a never ending story… and stop counting the calories! :P