Thursday, January 29, 2009

Daring Bakers 5: Tuiles

Surprised? Yes! I did manage to complete this month's Daring Bakers challenge. What with these new rules and all- the pressure is on! Especially since each month's recipe tends to either be: simple, but time consuming, or, the most torturous day of your life. I am surprised that the group still has such a strong membership, but really, that's what we love about it right?

This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.

Tuiles eh? I never really thought of them as a dessert as such. A decorative component, yes, but certainly not the highlight. Maybe I just haven't encountered enough tuiles to really see their full potential? I certainly never thought to make them at home- then I am not really the decorative type. I like my desserts simple and clean. Occasionally I will embellish them, but rarely. I suppose it could be seen as a sign of laziness, but honestly, it's not! I really like the focus to be on the main components of the dessert. I also avoid decorating with items that aren't edible, or that don't really 'add' anything to the dish, other than visually. Well, I suppose it's good luck that we made tuiles this month as they are both an edible decoration, as well as one that can add to the flavour.

This month's challenge actually reminded me of a dessert in Gordon Ramsay's Three Star Chef cookbook. I had admired it from afar, but hadn't planned on attempting it anytime soon... anytime in my life actually. Part of the challenge was to pair the tuiles with something light. Right. Another arrow pointing to Gordon Ramsay's tuile dessert. His chocolate tuiles are paired with a lemon and basil mousse, and also a raspberry mousse, which is presented as a millefeuille. This fit the challenge perfectly, but in the end, I had to compromise. I decided to go with chocolate tuiles and pair them with a lemon mousse recipe I found over at Tartlette. Simple and delicious. I would have loved to use the mousse flavours in Gordon Ramsay's recipe, but I was only making such a small portion (as S is away) that it seemed a little extravagent. Maybe next time.

The tuile making itself, I found, came under the categorie of 'the most torturous day of your life'. The actual preparation of the batter was a breeze, but shaping it was another story. I had planned on using the same shape Gordon Ramsay's recipe used, but do you think it worked? Hell no! First my batter wasn't cooked enough so it never turned crispy enough to hold its shape. Then I baked them too much, that when I tried to shape them, they had already set before I could blink. This really wasn't looking good for me and my batter was starting to run out. So, I ended up going with a vary simple shape... a circle! As soon as the batter came out of the oven, I cut out circles with a glass. Unfortunately, these did not bake long enough either and they never turned crispy. So I ended up with a slightly chewy tuile. Not good. At least a tuile's crispness cannot be determined through a lense.


Yields: 20 small butterflies/6 large (butterflies are just an example)
Preparation time batter 10 minutes, waiting time 30 minutes, baking time: 5-10 minutes per batch

65 grams / ¼ cup / 2.3 ounces softened butter (not melted but soft)
60 grams / ½ cup / 2.1 ounces sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 sachet vanilla sugar (7 grams or substitute with a dash of vanilla extract)
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65 grams / 1/2 cup / 2.3 ounces sifted all purpose flour
1 table spoon cocoa powder/or food coloring of choice
Butter/spray to grease baking sheet

Oven: 180C / 350F

Using a hand whisk or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (low speed) and cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a paste. Keep stirring while you gradually add the egg whites. Continue to add the flour in small batches and stir to achieve a homogeneous and smooth batter/paste. Be careful to not overmix.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm up. (This batter will keep in the fridge for up to a week, take it out 30 minutes before you plan to use it).

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease with either butter/spray and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This will help spread the batter more easily if using a stencil/cardboard template such as the butterfly. Press the stencil on the bakingsheet and use an off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes. Mix a small part of the batter with the cocoa and a few drops of warm water until evenly colored. Use this colored batter in a paper piping bag and proceed to pipe decorations on the wings and body of the butterfly.

Bake butterflies in a preheated oven (180C/350F) for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown. Immediately release from bakingsheet and proceed to shape/bend the cookies in the desired shape. These cookies have to be shaped when still warm, you might want to bake a small amount at a time or maybe put them in the oven to warm them up again. (Haven’t tried that). Or: place a bakingsheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable.

Lemon Mousse:
from Tartlette

1 1/2 teaspoons (3 sheets) gelatin
2 tablespoons (30ml) cold water
1 1/4 (310ml) whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and scraped (throw the seeds in the pot with the milk)
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup (50 grams)sugar
1/4 cup (40 gr)cornstarch
1/4 cup (62.5ml) lemon juice
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1 cup (250ml) heavy cream

In a ramekin, sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let stand until you prepare the cream. In a medium bowl, whisk the sugar and egg yolks together, add the cornstarch mixing until you get a smooth paste. Set aside.

Meanwhile in a saucepan combine the milk and vanilla bean on medium heat until boiling. Remove from heat and add slowly to egg mixture, whisking constantly to prevent curdling, (pour through a strainer if this happens). Remove vanilla bean. Place the egg mixture back into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly. Add the lemon juice and zest, cook another 30 seconds and remove from the heat. Immediately add in the gelatin and stir until completely dissolved. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the cream so that it does not develop a skin as it cools to room temperature.

Whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form and gently fold it into the pastry cream. Pipe or spoon the mousse immediately in the cake rings, level the top with an offset spatula and refrigerate. If you have any leftover, spoon into dessert dishes or glasses for quick snack.


Anonymous said...

Great stuff Bria! Love the pairing of the mousse and chocolate tuiles. I actually made that GR 3 star chef dessert and it drove me mental lol

Baking Soda said...

Okay, so I have to look up Gordon F* Ramsay's dessert.. I want to know! Love your mousse!

Gigi said...

the mousse looks divine and the tuiles also! love your gingerbread cake as well.

Anonymous said...

I love your chocolate tuile/lemon mousse sandwiches. They look really good.

TeaLady said...

Tuile sandwich cookies. Works for me.

Sara said...

looks great! i ended up with a few flat ones myself.

The Flying Quiche said...

Oh lovely! I was lacking some inspiration when i too ended up with flat tuiles. But I was thinking of trying again this time with some Lemon Mousse! Maybe I'll go the sandwhich route too ;)

minisuperbias said...

i've read from a couple bloggers (myself included), that the chocolate version was a pain. hmmm... well, yours look great anyways! chocolate and lemon are always a great combo

Jenny said...

Looks lovely and sounds delicious. I love finding recipes on other blogs to try, and Tartlette is a favorite.

Lisa Michelle said...

Love the lemon paired with the chocolate. Such an underrated flavor! All in all, your tuiles look lovely, as do the photos :)

Bria said...

Thank you everyone! Lemon and chocolate is definitely a winner.

toontz said...

Well, you would never know they were chewy by that photo - it looks positively scrumptious. Lemon and chocolate is a wonderful combination. Great job!

Lisa magicsprinkles said...

These look sweet and love the lemon mousse idea. Well done!

Dragon said...

So gorgeous! Great job on this month's challenge.

Tartelette said...

Love your tuile mille feuilles/napoleon! Lemon and chocolate go perfectly together!

Diana said...

I love that you made the chocolate tuiles. They look great, especially paired with lemon. Great job on the challenge!