RECIPE: This all started with a new mould and a desire to make something special for my mum’s birthday. Mangoes were newly in season, so I decided to work around that as my base flavour. I took recipes from The Pastry Chef’s Little Black Book, a recipe collection for chefs that provides very abbreviated recipes, relying on the chef’s existing knowledge of how to prepare the element (or in my case, other cookbooks). For instance if a recipe requires an Italian Meringue, it will simply say to prepare an Italian Meringue rather than telling you to prepare a sugar syrup and drizzle that into your beaten eggs etc. The gelee recipe came from the internet, the dacquoise topped with crushed hazelnuts was leftover from something I’d made ages ago and frozen a spare sheet (coconut dacquoise would have been a better fit). The mousse and gel part of the entremet was also frozen for some time before finishing and using the dessert. The glaze was from Savour Online Classes (subscription service) but there’s plenty of glaze recipes available online.
COMPONENTS: I made the white chocolate mousse first, setting it in the freezer on a sheet pan. Following that I made the gel and also froze that in the freezer on a sheet pan. The mango mousse required a mango puree, with the recipe specifying that it contain 10% sugar. I couldn’t purchase any ready made, so used my stick blender to puree fresh mango and blended in caster sugar to make sure the sugar dissolved. It was my first go at making this glaze – it was a marble glaze recipe except I only made one colour. I should really have tried a mirror glaze; I’ll do that next time. The white chocolate was difficult to blend into the glaze mixture, as I suspect the original mix wasn’t warm enough, and then even though I tested the temperature at 34 degrees ready to pour, it thickened very quickly. I whitened it with titanium whitening fluid before adding yellow gel colour.
ASSEMBLY: I piped a layer of mango mousse in my individual moulds, cut a square of white chocolate mousse and gel and centred them both on top of the mousse layer, pressing them down gently until the mousse filled in around the sides. I filled the rest of the mould with the mango mousse and placed it in the freezer. I defrosted my dacquoise sheet and cut it into squares, allowing for a 1cm border around the moulded pieces. I placed four cutting rings on a plate, removed four frozen mousses from the moulds (straight out of the freezer) and placed one on top of each ring. I should have polished each frozen mousse to remove any bumps, but I was concerned at the rate the glaze was thickening so I poured straight away. I was right, my glaze had cooled below the minimum 30 degrees Celcius and it was difficult to get a smooth pour. I also didn’t have a palette knife handy so wasn’t ready to wipe the thick glaze off the top of the mousse and by the time I grabbed one and tried it, I lost my smooth finish. Once the glaze stopped dripping, I picked up the ring supporting the mousse and ran the palette knife carefully around the edges to remove the drips. Putting it down again, I slipped the palette knife under the mousse and lifted it, placing it on the dacquoise square. I finished the dessert with a wedge of freeze-dried mango and a mini-meringue.
IMPRESSION: The flavours all worked together, but the mango flavour wasn’t especially strong and the white chocolate mousse was pretty much lost. The gel was too firm (I guess too much gelatine) so when you put your spoon through the dessert, the gel squished the mousse and you didn’t get a clean cut. Overall it was okay but didn’t excite me. So far I’m doing well following recipes, but the process of creating your own dessert and finding appropriate recipes to combine together is challenging!
Recipes for mango mousse and white chocolate mousse from The Pastry Chef’s Little Black Book by Michael Zebrowski and Michael Mignano. Recipe for mango gelee online. Recipe for hazelnut dacquoise from Patisserie by William and Suzue Curley. Recipe for glaze from Savour Online Classes.