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Everything posted by jmacnaughtan

  1. That's the sweet spot. Also, if you want to boost the banana flavour a bit, add a splash of Jack Daniel's
  2. A big birthday party this weekend, so it had to be a bûche. Dark Forest Bûche Chocolate digestive and upmarket Lindt candy crunch Blackcurrant curd Dark chocolate sponge Cherries in brandy Mascarpone and vanilla chantilly Dark chocolate mousse Glaze Chocolate, cherries My first Black Forest, and many things learned: a) Buy the cherries at the last minute, or I will eat them all. b) Cling film leaves an unintentionally cool wood effect on the cake. c) I cannot cut straight to save my life. d) You can pipe glaze onto cakes. e) You don't notice how bad Paris streets are until you're trying to keep a cake away from your white shirt in the back of a taxi. But not bad Edited for coherence.
  3. So are these just caramels? According to Wikipedia, they're actually Jamaican. And now I'm down the Wiki-candy rabbit hole...
  4. It's squash season, so as usual I made a cake. I wanted to play around with milk chocolate a bit. I've come to realise that I much prefer it to dark, and it works better with more delicate flavours. Chocolate, orange and squash cake Milk chocolate orange biscuit base Génoise sponge soaked with orange juice and chacha Orange and butternut marmelade Orange and butternut curd Milk chocolate mousse Glaze More marmelade Candied clementine Really good, but the glaze went too thin and the mousse barely held together... I need to stop trusting Francisco Migoya's recipes. But still, one of my better cakes
  5. Ah. You may need more butter then I find if you use cold butter, it lightens up well and doesn't go runny, even when you reach 50/50 levels.
  6. Why don't you use a whisk? You could probably just chuck it in a Kitchenaid and leave it to whip. I've never had good results from a blender or food processor.
  7. Serve it warm. One of the biggest revelations of recent times is warm or hot boursin. Try it on French fries.
  8. Or the black pudding hockey pucks, fried bread and tea. But look on the bright side. There's still space for a kipper.
  9. Three days sounds like a lot though - that might explain the dryness. I do two, then rinse and dry, and leave for another day in the fridge to rest. It seems to improve the texture. But otherwise, yeah, I'd listen to @gfweb and @Okanagancook. Get rid of the dark meat.
  10. It's the flesh of the melon, cut into thin slices. Essentially: blanch in cold water brought to a boil, then shock in cold water. Make a syrup and pour over, leave for a day. Reboil the syrup, pour it back over. Keep doing this for a week. Sounds like far too much effort for my taste - almost as bad as making marrons glacées. You could easily substitute any other mild-flavoured, vaguely firm-fleshed and yellow or orange coloured candied fruit (pear, pineapple, guava or papaya would be fine)- among all the other ingredients, you'll never taste it anyway. I'm a fan of calissons, and this is the first I've noticed there's any melon in there.
  11. Thanks for resuscitating this thread I've started warming plates in the microwave. It doesn't seem to damage them and is quicker than the oven.
  12. We found a pick-your-own place nearby and ended up with a load of rhubarb and apples. It's still too warm for crumbles, so I made a cake... ...which ended up tasting and eating a lot like a crumble Rhubarb and apple cake Speculoos and ginger crunch Set rhubarb compote Pain d'épices Apple tatin Muscovado chantilly Glaze Candied pear The apple tatin is my favourite part.
  13. I imagine you could, but I don't really use it. Yeah, that's the one. I knew it was there somewhere ETA: I think @JohnT uses this one too.
  14. Thanks. I learned it when I was an apprentice at Pignol in Brignais, near Lyon.
  15. Yeah, it's a lot of fun. Lots of people, but vast quantities of chocolate and demonstrations. If possible, don't go on the weekend.
  16. Good question. But the more different things you have to sample, the longer people will stay and the greater the chance they'll buy. That's my thinking, anyway, based on the last couple of shows. Mostly sales, I think - if chocolatiers are selling a month's worth of stock in a weekend, it's pretty good I don't know about name recognition, but a lot of foreign chocolatiers are there, presumably to get their foot in the door of the French market or get picked up by one of the luxury department stores. For the bigger names, I think it's more of a marketing thing.
  17. I've heard back from a friend who used to do the Salon du Chocolat in Lyon with a fairly big chocolatier, and they would bring a month's worth of stock for the Salon. I think this would be a good rule of thumb for the Paris version - maybe even more, judging by the popularity of the show. You'll be amazed at how many free samples get eaten.
  18. Hi, and welcome to eGullet @SuperawesomeSnowflake At the moment, I can't give you any real figures for the volumes you'll need; however, if last year is anything to go by, you can't bring too much. It's more a retail space than a B2B event, so make sure you have plenty of sweets for tasting and enough stock to get you through - especially as the last two days are the Saturday and Sunday, when it will be busiest. I'll post back once I've spoken to a few people, and if and when I can give you a better answer. James
  19. You don't really need baking beads or trimming after baking - a lot just comes down to technique and resting. Here's what I do: - Roll out a good pastry (I think I posted my pâte sucrée recipe somewhere) to about 2mm - Cut out a circle about 2cm larger than your tart ring - Lay it over and press it in. Make sure you get the pastry right into the corner, otherwise it will slip down when you bake it. - Put it in the fridge for at least half an hour. - Just before baking, trim the edges with a knife at an angle, to give it a bevel. - Once baked, if there is any lifting underneath, just raise the pastry a little to let the steam escape and press it down to flatten it while it's still malleable. - Wait for it to cool completely before touching it again. I've never really seen the need for baking beads, or (thank God) cutting strips of pastry and assembling them.
  20. For the gelatin, that'll be the weight in powder or sheets - it comes to 1.49% of the total recipe weight. Both forms are essentially identical, and you generally want it to be somewhere between 0.5 and 1.5% of the weight, depending on other thickeners, consistency, etc. It should be fine to bring it to the boil. Just do as @pastrygirl recommends and strain it out. I'd recommend hitting it with a stick blender as well when you incorporate the butter.
  21. Ah, ok. It makes more sense now I've seen the cut - I thought it was just three stacked blocks of mousse that could be glazed separately and then stacked. It's the opposite, in fact - you generally glaze mousses to stop them from drying out. So what is your cake? I can guess that there are a couple of pistachio components, but that's about it...
  22. Looks great! So, why did you need to spray the glaze?
  23. First fraisier of the year I've managed to simplify it, too. Only takes an hour or so now. Fraisier Madeleine sponge Lemon and ginger white chocolate chantilly Gariguette strawberries Candied citron, etc. This is the first one I've done without a pastry-cream based cream - it's now lighter, if a little sweeter. The ginger works really well with the strawberries, too. Who knew?
  24. They do have them in Ireland, but I think they're called farls over there.
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