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Daily Archives: February 1, 2012

Blackberry Coconut Cream Cups with a Crisp Sugar Top

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups sweetened shredded coconut
  • 3/4 cup water, boiling
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tb cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 6 Tb butter, unsalted, cubed
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup super fine sugar

Place the coconut in a small mixing bowl and pour the boiling water over it. Cover with plastic wrap and steep for 30 minutes. Place a mesh strainer over a bowl and pour the coconut contents into the strainer, discard the coconut that is left in the strainer and set the coconut water aside.

In a small sauce pan combine the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Whisk in the milk and coconut water, mixing thoroughly. Add the blackberries and over medium heat bring to a boil, stirring constantly. (This may take a bit, approx 10 minutes) When the liquid starts to heat and the blackberries start to breakdown, smash them with a rubber spatula against the side of the sauce pan while stirring the liquid mixture. Once at a boil, cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes. Then pour the liquid ingredients through a sieve into a medium mixing bowl to extract the berry seeds. Discard the seeds and return the liquid to the sauce pan. Off heat, whisk in the egg yolks, return to the stove over medium heat cook for 3 minutes more. Off heat again stir in the butter and vanilla. Pour into ramekins or custard bowls, cool for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours covered.

Sprinkle each ramekin with about 1 tablespoon of the super fine sugar. Fire up your cooking torch and gently with a circular motion carmelize the sugar topping. No torch? Preheat your boiler on low, place the ramekins on a baking sheet about 5 inches from the heat. Watch them closely as it doesn’t take long for the sugar to carmelize and become brittle. Ready to serve.

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Posted by on February 1, 2012 in Desserts

 

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The Scrambled Egg Secret: Restaurants would rather you didn’t know.

I read an article about making the perfect scrambled eggs and thought the information might be helpful. I have experimented with their methods and found they were pretty close to what I have learned to do over the years, and they work.

Ingredients:   Scrambled Eggs for 2

  • 4 eggs, plus 1 additional yolk
  • 2 Tb Half & Half, (don’t substitute with milk or water, it doesn’t have the same compounds)
  • 2 Tb butter, unsalted
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper

The biggest tip I learned was to cook in a smaller skillet than you originally thought you needed. It keeps the eggs in a thicker layer and traps more steam which produces a heartier curd in the scramble. It works. I went from a 10″ skillet down to an 8″ skillet and even tried a 6″ skillet, both the smaller skillets worked better than the 10″ one.

  1. Whisk the eggs, yolk, Half & Half, salt and pepper until they are thoroughly combined. (Keep away from beating as it breaks down the eggs) You just want a pure yellow coloring throughout.
  2. Heat the butter in the 8″ skillet over medium heat until it is completely melted, swirling it to coat the skillet. (Be careful not to let the butter brown, as this indicates the skillet is to hot and the butter has gone past the melted stage.)
  3. Add the egg mixture, with a rubber spatula constantly and firmly scrap along the bottom and sides of the skillet until the eggs begin to clump. You will notice the spatula leaves a trail on the bottom of the skillet. This will happen fairly quickly, in about a minute or two. (The rubber spatula tool was crucial, I’ve used wooden spoons, forks and a whisk but the rubber spatula does the trick)
  4. Reduce the heat to low and gently but constantly fold eggs until all clumped and just slightly wet. This takes probably a minute.

Once the eggs are scrambled, transfer them immediately to a warm plate. Don’t let them sit in the skillet as they will continue to cook. Eggs are very delicate and sensitive to heat.

 
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Posted by on February 1, 2012 in Breakfast, Tips

 

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