Thursday, September 10, 2009

Delightful Holiday Desserts Flavored with Sweet Quady Wines

As the holidays approach it may be time to create a scrumptious new dessert for the Holiday meal. Wonderful flavor combinations are evident in the dessert recipes below, each of which includes a sweet Quady wine in the recipe. Many of these dessert creations are the handiwork of well-known chefs from around the world.

Consider the possibilities:

Caramelized Chocolate Banana Tart

Makes 4 desserts
Enrico Glaudo, L'angolo Ristorante, Los Angeles
For the Dough:
1/8 kilo all purpose flour
200 grams sugar
3 egg yolks pinch of baking soda
300 grams unsalted butter water as needed
Mix sugar, baking powder, softened butter and egg yolks in a bowl. When well mixed, add flour and mix without overworking the dough. If it is too hard, add a little water until it forms into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
For the Chocolate Mousse Filling:
250 grams heavy cream
6 egg yolks
400 grams dark chocolate
250 grams egg white
50 grams unsalted butter
90 grams sugar

Bring cream to a boil in a sauce pan large enough to mix chocolate. Remove from heat and add chocolate (shredded) and butter cut into small pieces. Mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. When all is incorporated and melted, transfer to a stainless steel bowl. Stir with a whisk until no longer hot to the touch and add egg yolks one at a time while stirring. Separately, beat egg whites and sugar together until the mixture forms stiff peaks. When chocolate is completely cold, add egg whites one spoonful at a time,(waiting until each spoonful is incorporated before adding the next spoonful), mixing top to bottom in a circular motion with a wooden spoon. Refrigerate.

Prepare pastry:
Remove dough from refrigerator and roll out to 1/8 of an inch thick. Cut into 2 ½ inch diameter circles. Bake at 350F until golden. Remove from oven and let cool.
Prepare Sauce:
250 grams milk
Coconut Extract if needed
75 grams sugar
1 tsp corn starch
100 grams shredded coconut
Bring ingredients to a boil. Strain and let cool.
3 bananas

Spread the chocolate mousse mixture on top of a baked cookie approximately ½ inch thick. Place another cookie on top and press down gently.
Slice the banana thinly at a diagonal. Fan bananas into a circle the same size as the cookie. Sprinkle sugar over the bananas and caramelize them with a propane torch. When cooled, place bananas on top of the cookie tart using a dab of the mousse on the center of the cookie to hold the bananas in place.
Pour sauce into individual serving dishes to cover bottom and arrange banana tart in center

Roasted Peach and Mascarpone Napoleon
with Fresh Mint and Lemon Verbena
Makes 4 desserts
James Foran, Silks at the Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco

Mascarpone Mousse:
1 cup cream
½ cup sugar
1 ½ cup mascarpone
2 Tbs. corn syrup
4 egg yolks
½ cup water
2 sheets gelatin
½ vanilla bean (scraped, seeds only)
Whip cream and mascarpone together slowly until mixture is slightly stiff. Set aside in refrigerator. Soften gelatin in ice water and set aside. Combine sugar, water and corn syrup with vanilla in small stainless pan. Place on medium heat. Whip egg yolks at high speed with the whisk attachment to a mixer. After sugar mixture has thickened and shows large bubbles slowly rising, add it in a steady stream to the yolk mixture, whipping. Continuing to whip, add the gelatin, strained. Whip until mixture cools to room temperature. Fold into mascarpone mixture.
Roasted peaches:
4 peaches
1 Tbs. Chopped mint
1/4 cup Essensia
1 Tbs fresh chopped lemon verbena
1/4 cup sugar syrup(equal parts sugar and water)
1 Tsp lemon juice
Slice peaches into 1/4 inch rings. Place rings on ½ sheet pan and cover with remaining ingredients. Marinate 20 minutes. Place in 350F oven for 15 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. Make a puree from the remaining pieces of peaches. Set puree aside. Reserve chopped mint and lemon verbena.
Napoleon Layers:
Puff pastry dough, one piece 12" x 4"
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg white 1 tsp cinnamon

Brush pastry dough evenly with egg white. Sprinkle evenly with sugar and cinnamon. Roll lengthwise and chill for 1 hour. Cut into 18 pieces. Dusting with powdered sugar, roll each piece into a 4" diameter round. Freeze for 1 hour. Bake at 400 F for 6-8 minutes until layers are brown and caramelized.

Place napoleon layer on plate with a spot of mousse underneath to hold in place. Place a peach ring on top. Fill center hole with mousse. Repeat with 2 more layers. Place 4th layer on top. Garnish plate with peach puree and chopped fresh mint and lemon verbena, from the marinade.

Tanner Farm Goat Cheese Cake
with Honeyed Essence of Essensia and Mixed Berries of the Season
Makes 8 desserts
Gayle Tanner, David Berkeley's, Sacramento

11 ounces mild fresh goat cheese, softened
3 Tbsp. All purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar 3 cups mixed fresh berries
2 tsp. orange juice
Confectioners' sugar for dusting
1 tsp. Minced orange zest
2 cups Essensia reduced to 3 or 4 ounces
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Honey to taste
6 large eggs, separated
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 9 inch round cake pan and dust with granulated sugar, pouring off the excess. Reduce Essensia to 3-4 ounces. Cool. Add a touch of honey to taste.
Combine goat cheese with the granulated sugar, orange juice, orange zest and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until smooth. Beat in egg yolks, 2 at a time, incorporating completely before adding the next batch. Beat in flour at low speed.
In another bowl, beat egg whites until firm but not dry. Beat one third of the whites into the goat cheese mixture, then gently fold in the remaining whites. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.
Invert cake onto a large plate. Pour Essensia syrup evenly over cake and arrange berries on top and garnish with sifted confectioners' sugar.

Frozen Pistachio Parfait with an Apricot Center
served with Strawberries Macerated with Fresh Basil and an Essensia-Apricot Sauce
Makes 5 desserts
Joe Miller, Joe's Restaurant, Venice

Essensia sauce and compote:
10 apricots
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup Essensia wine
1 cup Evian water
Mix wine, water and sugar and bring to a boil. Pit apricots and wash. Add to wine mixture and poach slowly until soft but not falling apart. Carefully strain out poached apricot pulp. Place pulp in another pan and cook until reaching the consistency of a compote. Using ice trays, freeze strained pulp into 5 pieces. Strain liquid through a fine sieve and reduce by ½ or until it coats the back of a spoon. Cool.
Pistachio parfaits:
7 oz granulated sugar 8 egg yolks 2 cups whipping cream 4 fl oz Evian water
3 oz Pistachio paste
3 oz Pistachio paste
7 oz granulated sugar
8 egg yolks
2 cups whipping cream
4 fl oz Evian water
Warm pistachio paste until soft. Combine sugar and water and cook to the soft ball stage. Beat egg yolks in mixture until they turn pale, and slowly add sugar. Do not cook egg yolks. Cool over ice bath. Whip cream until it forms soft peaks. Fold the pistachio paste into the cooled egg yolks followed by the whipped cream. Using 5 ea 70 mm ring molds, place a frozen piece of apricot compote into the center, fill with parfait mixture, and freeze.
3 baskets Strawberries
1/4 lb diced basil
1 1/2 oz Pistachios, ground coarse
Slice strawberries and toss in a bowl with 1 Tbs. sugar and the sliced basil. Let macerate 20 minutes. To serve, arrange strawberries around center of plate. Unmold parfait and place in center. Top with ground pistachios and ring sauce around outside.

Jasmine Panna Cotta
with Black Muscat Reduction and Wild Strawberries
Makes 6-8 Servings
Verite Mazzola, Café Del Rey, Marina Del Rey

6 oz. heavy cream
5 oz. sugar
6 oz. milk
4 Tbs. jasmine water
12 oz. crème fraiche
1/2 oz. gelatin
Boil milk, sugar and jasmine. Soften gelatin in cold water. Whip together cream and crème fraiche. Dissolve gelatin into warm (80-90 degrees) milk mixture. Fold both mixtures together. Chill in 2-3 inch molds or ramekins until firm.
Black Muscat Reduction:
1 bottle Elysium
2 Tbs. cornstarch
1/2 c. simple syrup*
1 c. simple syrup*
12 blueberries*
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
*To make 2 cups simple syrup, mix 2 c. sugar, 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar and 1 c. water in a small saucepan. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 2 minutes without stirring. Uncover and allow to cool. Boil wine with 1 c. syrup and blueberries until volume is reduced by 1/3. Combine 1/2 c. syrup with cornstarch and whisk into boiling mixture. Return to a full boil, remove from heat and strain.

48 white wild strawberries (available at specialty food stores, or use red wild strawberries)
8 baby ivy leaves
8 small branches of champagne grapes
Place panna cotta on plate. Add two pools of Black Muscat reduction on the plate and line edges of plate with white wild strawberries. Garnish one edge of the plate with champagne. If desired, secure one ivy leaf on top of the panna cotta. Serve chilled.

Flourless Chocolate Cake Per I Piedi di Hana
(Extra Bittersweet Flourless Chocolate Cake
with Sonora Blackberry and Royal Apricot Granitas)
Diane Posner Mastro, Restaurant Enoteca, Albany

1/2 c. warm water
7 Tbs. unsalted butter
6 large egg yolks
2 Tbs. Elysium
9 oz. extra bittersweet chocolate
Pinch of salt
8 egg whites
Melt the chocolate with butter. Combine egg yolks and Elysium and mix with chocolate water mixture. Beat egg whites with pinch of salt until they form soft peaks. Gently fold into chocolate mixture. Bake in a buttered floured springform pan at 325F for 20-30 minutes. The center of the cake will be moist and cake will pull away slightly. Let cake cool and remove springform.
Chocolate Sauce:
2 cups heavy cream
1 Tbs. corn syrup
12 oz. extra bittersweet chocolate
Warm chocolate slightly with corn syrup in a double boiler on medium high heat. When thoroughly melted beat in cream, until fully incorporated.
Royal Apricot Granita:
4 c. organic rose petal simple syrup (see below)
3 Tbs. Vin Santo or Essensia
7 lbs. ripe organic apricots
Juice of 1 lemon

Wash, pit and cut apricots into wedges. Spread out in a stainless steel or glass roasting pan, sprinkle with sugar, lemon juice and wine. Cover with aluminum foil and roast in a 400 degree oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until apricots are soft and have released their juices. Cool slightly, then puree. Mix with 4 cups of the cooled rose petal simple syrup and combine thoroughly. Place in a covered container (not glass) and freeze 36-48 hours until frozen through. When ready to serve, remove from freezer for minutes, then scrape granita into bowls.
Sonora Blackberry Granita:
4 c. organic rose petal simple syrup
Juice of 1 lemon
1 flat ripe organic Sonora blackberries
2 Tbs. rosewater - obtained at a middle eastern market
1/2 c. granulated sugar
Spread berries on a sheet pan and treat exactly like the apricots except the roasting should take only 20 minutes.
Organic Rose Petal Simple Syrup
8 c. water
4 c. granulated sugar
2 c. organic rose petals
Combine sugar and water and heat until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and add rose petals. Allow to steep 20 minutes or to taste. Strain out petals, reserve syrup.
To Assemble:
Slice cake with a hot dry knife. Serve with the chocolate sauce and the two granitas and a glass of Elysium.

Strawberry Fields with Passion Fruit Puddles
Makes 18 desserts
Jane Thoma, Hotel Sofitel, Los Angeles

Passion Fruit Dressing:
500 g passion fruit puree
120 g olive oil
1 egg yolk (can be omitted)
100 g granulated sugar
Blend until smooth and slightly thickened. Reserve. (If egg yolk is omitted, add 30g additional oil.)

Orange tuile cookies:
Rind from one orange, finely chopped
265 g egg whites
250 g powdered sugar
160 g flour sifted
250 g unsalted butter
Mix butter and sugar together. Add whites in small amounts until incorporated. Add flour. Immediately spread batter over stencil on a silicone baking mat. Exopat is one brand which works well. Bake at 350 degrees F until golden. Remove from oven while still pliable and allow to cool.

Strawberry Mousse:
450 g Strawberry puree
1 pint whipped cream
50 g Raspberry puree
5 sheets gelatin
175 g sugar (or according to tartness of fruit)
Place gelatin into cold water until it softens (blooms). Combine purees. Place 1/3 of the puree into a sauce pan and heat. Squeeze the water from the gelatin and add it along with the sugar. Heat until both gelatin and sugar are melted and incorporated into the puree. Combine with remainder of puree and cool until slightly thickened. While mixture is cooling, whip cream to soft peaks. When mixture is cooled and thickened, fold in cream in 3 portions. Place into refrigeration. Mixture should gel in about 1 hour.

Passion Fruit Mousse:
1 pint Whipped Cream
255 g Sugar (or according to tartness of fruit)
5 ea Gelatin Sheets
525 g Passion fruit puree
Assembly of strawberry and passion fruit parfaits:
18 each 3" diameter 2" high ring molds
two pastry tubes
18 each 3" diameter by 1/4" thick slices of yellow cake (pound cake)
6 pints strawberries cut 1/8 " thick
300 g pureed and strained strawberries
strawberry glaze
8 - 10 strawberries cut in ½
Place a single row of sliced strawberries along the inside of the ring. Carefully place the cake round inside the row of strawberries and fit into bottom of mold. Brush cake with pureed strained strawberries to soak. Using a pastry tube, pipe strawberry mousse on the inside of the mold above the strawberry slices. Using a different tube, pipe the passion fruit mousse into the center space up to about 1/4 inch from the top. Cover the top with strawberry mousse, and flatten top with a spatula. Freeze about 1 hour. Heat sides of mold slightly to unmold. Brush a thin layer of glaze on top , add ½ of a fresh strawberry. Reserve.

Place parfait into the center of a plate and surround by sliced strawberries. Just before serving, drizzle passion fruit dressing over strawberries making puddles on the plate.
Serve with orange tuile cookies.

Lychee with Candy Macadamia Nut Cream
Makes 8 desserts
Robert Cheong, Park Hyatt Hotel, San Francisco

Sugar Puff Points:
Puff Pastry
Powdered Sugar
Cut puff pastry bite size triangles. Dust with granulated sugar on both sides. Place between parchment paper and 2 sheet pans. Bake until golden.
Candy Macadamia Nut Cream:
1 quart heavy cream
12 stalks lemongrass, coarsely chopped
3 c sugar
1 c light corn syrup
1-1/2 c water
2 ½ c chopped macadamia nuts
1 ½ Tbsp. butter
½ Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. baking soda

Soak lemongrass overnight in cream. Strain out. Add sugar until tastes lightly sweet. Whip until stiff and set aside. Combine 3 cups sugar with corn syrup and water and cook until thick (about 240F). Add 2 ½ cups chopped macadamia nuts. Stir until golden brown (300-320F). Remove from heat. Add 1 ½ Tbs. butter, ½ Tbs. vanilla extract, 1 Tbs. baking soda. Mix well, allow to cool until brittle, and crush. Fold brittle into cream.
Lychee Tapanade:
24 lychee
3 rose buds of different colors
Peel, slice, and dice lychee. Cut rose petals into chiffonade. Combine and marinate in lychee juices.
Semi-Sweet Chocolate Swirls:
2 oz semi-sweet chocolate
Allow chocolate to warm slightly and create swirls using a vegetable peeler.
Spread a layer of macadamia nut cream onto sugar puff point. Cover with lychee tapenada and add a chocolate swirl on top. Serve as bite size hors d'oeuvres.

Chocolate Cream Cake
Lisa Hemenway, Hemenway and Fleisner, Santa Rosa
Melt 14 oz. semi sweet chocolate, 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate and 1/4 cup good strong coffee slowly over gentle steam in a double broiler. Meanwhile, beat 6 eggs with 1/4 cup sugar until lemon colored and light. Fold the melted chocolate mixture into the eggs. Fold in 1 cup heavy cream. Bake in bain marie for one hour at 350F or until the top is just firm. Serve warm. Accompany with Elysium.

Pumpkin Essensia Pound Cake
Essensia is a wonderful treat for the holiday season. Enjoy it chilled with all of your holiday desserts. Try this Pumpkin Essensia Pound Cake at your next family gathering or anytime you are in the mood for a delicious dessert to compliment Essensia.
3 cups sifted flour 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
1 tbls baking powder 1 ~ 16 oz can of pumpkin puree
1 tsp salt ¾ cups melted butter
¼ tsp cinnamon ¼ cup milk
¼ tsp nutmeg ¼ cup Essensia
¼ tsp allspice 3 eggs (room temperature)
1 tbls ground orange peel
Sift together dry ingredients and set aside.
Beat eggs until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar until blended. Beat in pumpkin and butter. Combine milk and Essensia; add alternately with dry ingredient mixture to pumpkin mixture.

Pour into well greased bundt pan or 2-quart cake mold. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 to 60 minutes. Remove and cool. Drizzle Essensia over the top to complete the cake. Serve and enjoy with a glass of Essensia.

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