Monday, September 19, 2011

Guanaja H20 & Tropical


I have been a fan of molecular gastronomy for a while. It was when I first discovered Alinea's cookbook few years ago that I got hooked instantly to the gastronomic world. I never thought food could be interpreted this way, totally out of this world.

This past week I did my research on molecular gastronomy especially in dessert making technique. I came across Singaporean pastry chef Janice Wong of 2am dessertbar. I saw her works before from Lennardy's blog and was totally amazed. Her works were truly inspirational. My Guanaja H20 was inspired by her Araguani H20. Guanaja H20 was an aerated 70% Valrhona dark chocolate formed into a shape resembling a coral. The dark chocolate was only mixed with Evian water, so there was no heavy cream, eggs, nor sugar in it - it was pure chocolate. One will feel less guilty enjoying this dessert. You might have questioned how can chocolate be mixed with water as water is the enemy of chocolate. Apparently a French chemist Dr. Herve invented this. You can find Heston Blumenthal's video explaining how this works.

I added a few drops of caramel fleur de sel to go with the chocolate coral. Although I like 70% dark chocolate, I prefer to have a little sweetness in my dessert. The sweet and salty addition from the caramel fleur de sel mixed really well with the aerated dark chocolate.

Here's a close up shot of the Guanaja H2O

My second dessert I called it Tropical. It might look a little busy in term of presentation but I like the combination of texture and flavor.

In the middle was the pliable chocolate ganache. Big props to chef Alex Stupak who invented this while he was at Alinea. I used a milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate as milk chocolate was better off with passionfruit. The pliable chocolate ganache was by far the best chocolate ganache I had ever tasted. Next in the plate was the super soft matcha sponge. This was my interpretation of El Bulli's super soft black sesame sponge. The rest of the components in the plate were: two passionfruit couilis curls, passionfruit sorbet, raspberry, white chocolate dome and popcorn powder. I added popcorn powder to add a slight saltiness to this dessert.


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