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New dessert Attempt


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Last evening we were fortunate enought to entertain 6 guests at our chef's table at Tribute. One of the courses i prepared for them is one that i have had on our a la carte menu for some time now, but paired with differnt garnishes.

Crispy Yuzu Custard

Citrus Sunomono

Salted Avacado

Coconut-Anise Sorbet

Toasted Sesame


A short description about the custard; essentially it is a pastry cream flavored with yuzu, frozen in a terrine mold and fried a la minute. A dessert being derived from, spain's infoumus "heavens bacon". Crispy exterior, moulton yuzu interior. Thought the pairing's worked rather well with the custard flovor wise, it was lacking some where... I was wondering if any one would take a peak, and give suggestions for the general composition of the dish.

Citrus sunomono (at least in my book) is derived from japanese cuisine meaning "Vinegared Things". Here we have actually added more acid to citrus segments in the form of ponzu and rice wine vinegar, and added a touch of salt and sugar to help steer the concoction just left of overkill.

Cory Barrett

Pastry Chef

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Hi Cory.

I'm wondering how one can take a peek :biggrin:

What's missing with it for you?

Oh, ok...

The list is all of the components?

If so, is there too many sort of creamy AND acidic/salty things in there?

Maybe something dead on sweet, like something snappy with white chocolate, possibly infused with something, contrast well with the rest?

Or an icey yet sweet?

I've always wanted to get around to making this white chocolate granite/granizado out of Albert Adrias 'Los Postres...' book.

You could infuse this, perhaps?

If you are interested in the recipe (if you don't have it) PM me.

Hope this was helpful yet unintrusive :biggrin

A humourous, perhaps kind of relevant aside...

A couple of weeks ago I was running a type of an ice cream soda/float, with a Milk chocolate light anglaise that I dispensed out of an ISI soda siphon, carbonating it.

I served it with a white chocolate malted milk ice cream that I "hid" a melange of citrus pop rocks in.

So, at the tasting, the servers were going gaga over it, which is nice and everything, but this one guy just kept on coming at me with all kinds of pop rocks ideas, even a week later when he proposed a sushi type thing that was rolled in tabagai(sic?) type colored(orange/) pop rocks.

It was all nice, well intentioned, even some good ideas but, sometimes you just want to say "Dude! Do you want to be a pastry chef??? :laugh::laugh::laugh:

Edited by tan319 (log)


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Customer point of view here, as opposed to PC opinion. How about a swirl of a date-based sauce, possibly even with a little added tamarind so it rings with the citrus? When I imagine that plate I'm looking for a deeper, grounding note.

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It sounds interesting and creative. My opinion would be to reduce the flavors. I would not use the avocado or the cilantro. I would also probably not use the sorbet. I don't care for sorbet paired with things such as cake, tarts, warm dessert items. It just melts and makes them soggy (I really don't like to be served sorbet on top of cake/pastry). I would go for a caramel sauce infused with vanilla bean. It would focus, and add depth to your citrus.

Are you using fresh yuzu or bottled?

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First of all, hats off for going to the board for a brainstorm;

For my palate, which coincidentally has been panned for being terrible, but somehow I still weakly trust,

i would strengthen the bitter components, and reduce the repetition of sour, salt, and aromatic.

Perhaps withdrawing the anise from the coconut, and the salt from the citrus segments.

I am not sure of the texture of sesame and avocado: if it is sesame oil and avocado emulsion I would think this would be pleasing.

Perhaps a profound bitter would help bring the flavor together, brown butter with coffee and cardamon?

Texturally, again unclear, but creamy in the form of cake or gelee would seem to be a strong middle texture. Brown butter working exceptionally well with gelee of its water.

More important to me, what are you trying to make? Why are these things together? It would be much easier to help decipher a path with an insight onto your vision.

Warm regards

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Cory, when I had this dish several weeks ago, did you plate for me the 'a la carte' version, or something smaller and tighter? Upon reading your list of all the components, I have to admit that there are a few that I don't recall tasting; perhaps the yuzu simply buries some of the intended supporting players, or perhaps they simply got lost in that particular composition. With regard to texture, I recall even less. You have to realize, though, by time I had eaten that dish, I had succombed to a bit of sensory overload...

But generally, I agree with Will on introducing a bitter note. For starters, after sweet, sour, and, as of late, salty, bitterness in dessert is still underappreciated in my book. I don't know if you recall (though the 'monkeys' surely will), but by time I had left I was throwing confit of whole lemon and kumquat on everything, out of sheer fascination with the subtle bitterness and how it pushed and pulled other flavors. The idea of an emerging earthiness to contrast sounds good as well. Though it very well might have been the dessert this dish replaced, that green tea ice cream grounded and balanced the runaway sweetness and acid in the old rice pudding, don't you think?... But is that really what you are asking? You seem content with the flavor profiles...

Sometimes I approach a dessert concept from a 'subtractive' point of view. Rather than build onto an initial concept, I've taken to immediately stripping away until I think I've lost the essence of the original idea, thus concluding what is absolutely necessary. Though we haven't discussed it much, this is an essential process in my present context; I don't mean to say I'm thinking more simple, but more pure. It's the gulf between those two that I'm exploring now.

And don't discount the mechanics of a dish- how it is eaten, and the order or combinations in which the flavors are introduced. You might drastically rearrange the state of each ingredient, without necessarily losing them if you feel they are important, and discover a whole new presentation. I think 'deconstruction' is over as an end goal, but much can be revealed in the dismantling and reconstruction of an idea. In other words, 'if ain't broke, well, let's break it...' Which is what I think you're doing with us here...

Michael Laiskonis

Pastry Chef

New York


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  • 2 weeks later...

And now we return to "As The Yuzu Turns"... Recently Chef Suan McClain dined with us at tribute and he was served what i think is my more refined version of this dish.

Crispy Yuzu Custard (now the custard is creamier and double breaded)

Miso-Orange Ice Cream (Salty miso, bitter orange... Thanks M)

Coconut Sorbet

Toasted Sesame Tuile

I lost the avacado, but will return to a yuzu near you. I appreciate you for politely telling me to get to the point. It's warm, fragrent, sweet, sour, salty, and a bit bitter all in that descending order. This has been one element that i have been happily working on my whole stay at tribute, and as of now i am more happy with it then ever.

Cory Barrett

Pastry Chef

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