Thursday, October 25, 2007

Chocolate Marquise

Woo hooo! There are actually people out there (other than those who are forced, such as my friends, their friends, my family, and their friends) who read the Dough Ball. Or at least one person. I recently discovered that my Pesto Truffles had been featured as part of another foodblogger’s cupcake recipe, which you can see here (you just have to scroll down a bit). She even says they were "perhaps the most important component." My creation was the cherry on top, or rather, the truffle on top. But yay.

So now to the growing list of food I’ve made but haven’t written about yet. First off, Chocolate Marquise from Simon Hopkinson’s Second Helpings of Roast Chicken. This recipe I had been eyeing for quite a long time, as it seemed to be pure chocolate with a pistachio custardy-sauce. My one problem was I couldn’t find ground pistachios anywhere and I didn’t have a food processor. Enter ground hazelnuts found in Germany and left over from Gateaux Breton. In my book, there’s nothing better than the combination of chocolate and hazelnut. So I got together all my ingredients, and the recipe looked kinda long, but honestly it’s pretty easy. You just heat all the chocolate and butter, etc. things up for the marquise, and then refrigerate it overnight. Words of wisdom: when he says add in the order that he writes, do it. I put butter in at the end for a little extra shine because I thought the chocolate mixture looked dull, but instead of shine I got butter that separated from the marquise in the final product…ooops. Oh, and the hazelnut sauce was so good I ate it with a spoon. Literally. Now I know where the saying comes from. The only thing was the chocolate was so rich that you needed lots of sauce for just a tiny amount of marquise, which was okay, because it made lots of sauce (which I took care of).

Marquise au Chocolat ‘Taillevent’, Sauce a la Noisette
thanks Simon Hopkinson (thought I’d just make a note, I don’t know if anyone else has noticed who’s read his little Roast Chicken books where he picks out some of his favorite foods/ingredients and goes through them, giving a few recipes for each. Well, the Marquise is found under the cocoa chapter, although no part of it includes cocoa…typo?)

280 g dark chocolate
100 g powdered sugar
185 g unsalted butter, softened
5 eggs, separated
pinch of salt

hazelnut paste
120 g roasted and husked hazelnuts
130 g sugar
2 egg whites

100 g hazelnut paste
1 litre milk
8 egg yolks (7 works ok, because that’s all I used)
250 g sugar

To make the marquise, first gently melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Now add, in this order (really in this order!), mixing well after each addition: 70 g of the powdered sugar, all the butter and the egg yolks. Remove from the heat. Beat the egg whites in another bowl until stiff, then add the remaining 30 g powdered sugar and beat until glossy. Add one-third of this to the chocolate mixture to loosen it, folding it in carefully but thoroughly. Now add the rest, using the same action. Rinse a large terrine mould with water and fill with the mixture. Cover with saran wrap (cling film for the slow Brits) and chill for 24 hours.
To make the paste, simply grind the hazelnuts in a food processor until as smooth as possible (not so ‘simple’ if you don’t have a food processor, Simon), then add the sugar and egg white until it forms a paste. Store in a screw-top jar and keep in the fridge, where it will last for a week at least. And it makes extra, I still have some sitting around my freezer, wondering if I should just make more sauce and drink it…
To make the sauce, put the paste and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for at least 5 minutes. Whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until thick and then combine with the warm milk. Cook gently over moderate heat, stirring constantly until lightly thickened—a custard, in other words. Strain through a fine sieve into a bowl and chill.
To serve, cut thin slices from the marquise (use a thin sharp knife dipped into hot water), arrange on plates and spoon the sauce around.

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