Culinary Sense

Adventures with Food and Life

Archive for the month “October, 2012”

Plated Desserts: Blind Basket

Hi People!

At the beginning of our new class, Chef assigned us all a “blind basket” project. We got four ingredients and had to make a plated dessert out of it.

Here are my ingredients: brown sugar, heavy cream, eggs, coffee. So I figured: heavy cream and eggs – easy! I’ll make ice cream! And creme anglaise! I made coffee ice cream (delicious!) and also brown sugar ice cream. The brown sugar ice cream was exciting, as I had never made ice cream before, had certainly never heard of brown sugar ice cream. It involves melting the brown sugar and caramelizing it slightly before adding it to the ice cream base, which then gets spin in the machine to create the ice cream.

I decided on profiteroles because I could do a trio; that makes the dish exciting! Here’s how it come out!

Three profiteroles filled with: coffee ice cream, brown sugar ice cream, and chocolate pastry cream. I made different chocolate toppings with dark and white chocolate. On the bottom of the plate, there is a brandy creme anglaise. In between the three profiteroles, there is a brown sugar streusel.

If I might say so myself, I thought the plate came out well. We happened to have an anniversary table in for dinner on the day I ran my special. So it worked out well!

Another part of the class was to draw some plated desserts. First, a classic plating of a flourless chocolate cake. Then, a modern plating of the same thing.


I came up with two ideas for a modern plating.



Desserts are so easy to make pretty! This was a fun project.

~ Carolynn



Plated Desserts: Tuiles

Hey Peeps!

Want to join me for a tuile party?

You probably want to know what a tuile is! A tuile is a kind of wafer, usually added to a plated dessert as a garnish. A tuile should be interesting to look it, and have a significant effect on the plate – in other words, it should make an impact when the server brings the plate to the table.

I’ve put together some photos of tuiles that we made in class. One student usually spent about two hours making tuiles before every service. You take the batter and spread it onto a sheet pan lined with a silpat, a non-stick baking mat. So, you spread the batter with an off-set spatula, using a stencil (you’ll see how it works in the photos). You bake them – not too long, they burn easily – and then you either let them cool after baking, or take them while they’re still warm and form them into the shape you want. This was a hard part for me! My hands are so sensitive to the heat! Chef regularly made fun of me!

The tuiles are cripsy and have a slight vanilla flavor; you can also make chocolate ones.



Plated Desserts: Strudel

Hey strangers!

Here’s a new post – which I know you have been waiting for!

In one of our classes, Chef showed us how to make a true strudel! The dough is made from scratch, and stretched out over a table, and then rolled up.


Here’s the Chef and a classmate stretching the dough very thinly over a table lined with a clean tablecloth. You have to be careful not to tear the dough, although a small tear is okay.


As you can see, the dough has been stretched so far that you can almost see through it.


Here is the dough, laid over the table. Now it is time to fill it with yummy apple filling!


All the filling goes onto one end of the table, in a large heap.


Then, you brush melted butter onto the dough, and gradually roll the whole thing up into one big sausage.


This is what it should look like! As you can see, we left the ends on. That way, all the liquid from the apples doesn’t run out onto the baking tray (and out of the strudel).

You can cut it into slices and enjoy with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

~ Carolynn

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