Saturday, March 27, 2010

Dare to Bake - Orange You Glad?

Another month, another Daring Bakers Challenge. This time, we celebrated the ever so popular citrus season of California and Florida (too bad I'm in Washington, now). Generally, I don't care a whole lot for fruit and chocolate mixing - except if it's covering strawberries - but it was time for a chocolate dessert! I am also trying to improve my presentation skills. Anywho, here is the recipe for my vegan version of a Chocolate Orange Tian:

Chocolate Sable Cookie (based on lavender sable cookies from Love, Eric)
1/4 cup vegetable or nut oil
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup sugar (or to taste)
1 tbs chocolate peanut butter
3/4 cup all-purpose flour whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup non-alkalized cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt

1. Whisk wet ingredients together. Mix in cocoa powder and then add other dry ingredients.
2. Roll dough into a ball or log and refrigerate for an hour.
3. Use cookie cutters or cut log into circular cookies.
4. Bake for 12 minutes at 350F, until set but not browning yet.

Chocolate Tofu Mousse (based on Chocolate-Almond Midnight in The Millennium Cookbook)
2 cup/16 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips or bar
24 oz firm silken tofu
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt

1. Melt chocolate in microwave (at 30 second intervals) or in a double broiler.
2. Food process tofu, sugar, salt, and vanilla. Add chocolate and process until smooth.
3. Pour into well-greased ramekins and bake at 350F for 30 minutes, or until top is set.

Blood Orange Marmalade
Freshly pressed orange juice ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons; 3.5 oz; 100 grams
2 medium orange used to make orange slices
cold water to cook the orange slices
pectin 5 grams
granulated sugar: use the same weight as the weight of orange slices once they are cooked

1. Finely slice the orange. Place the orange slices in a medium-sized pot filled with cold water. Simmer for about 10 minutes, discard the water, re-fill with cold water and blanch the oranges for another 10 minutes.
2. Blanch the orange slices 3 times. This process removes the bitterness from the orange peel, so it is essential to use a new batch of cold water every time when you blanch the slices.
3. Once blanched 3 times, drain the slices and let them cool.
4. Once they are cool enough to handle, finely mince them (using a knife or a food processor).
5. Weigh the slices and use the same amount of granulated sugar . If you don’t have a scale, you can place the slices in a cup measurer and use the same amount of sugar.
6. In a pot over medium heat, add the minced orange slices, the sugar you just weighed, the orange juice and the pectin. Cook until the mixture reaches a jam consistency (10-15 minutes).
7. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and put in the fridge.

To Assemble
1. Using a circle cake form (or a tin can with both ends removed, like I did), layer the ingredients - cookie, marmalade, mousse (scoop out and smooth after cooled), and then arranged orange segments on top.
2. Unmold and refrigerate until serving!

The 2010 March Daring Baker’s challenge was hosted by Jennifer of Chocolate Shavings. She chose Orange Tian as the challenge for this month, a dessert based on a recipe from Alain Ducasse’s Cooking School in Paris.

Stay tuned for my initiation into "You Want Pies with That"


Aparna Balasubramanian said...

This looks so lovely. Liked your pairing chocolate and orange here, its one of my favourite combinations.

shila said...

Gorgeous! I love blood orange and now really want to make the marmalade you featured.