A Taste of Valentino

The February 2009 challenge is hosted by Wendy of WMPE’s blog and Dharm of Dad ~ Baker & Chef.

We have chosen a Chocolate Valentino cake by Chef Wan; a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Dharm and a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Wendy as the challenge.

This time around, the Daring Baker’s challenge contained two required elements: a chocolate flourless cake, the Valentino, and home made ice cream. We could make the cakes in any shape we desired and provide an ice cream of our choice just as long as it was homemade. There were too many possibilities that kept jumping into my mind so this month I went back to some of my basics. A small taste of dessert, a touch of ice cream, a few fancy garnishes, and a luscious fruit sauce.

The dessert consisted of a mini valentino cake, vanilla bean ice cream, sauteed bananas, and passion fruit sauce. I decided to go with a small taste of dessert because chocolate desserts are often rich and overpowering. The elegant plating was much appreciated by the eater and my apprentice.

As an added bonus, and because I missed last month’s challenge, I decided to incorporate last month’s DB challege, a vanilla tuile. The dragonfly pattern was cut out of cardboard and used as a template for the tuiles. I bent the wings while they were still hot and they cooled into shape.

The whole dessert seemed to balance nicely. The rich chocolate balanced nicely with the sweet, yet tangy, passion fruit sauce. The ice cream and the sauteed fruit rounded out the dish perfectly. The tuile completed the dessert and elevated this dish to restaurant quality.

Chocolate Valentino
adapted from Sweet Treats by Chef Wan

16 ounces (1 pound) (454 grams) of semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
½ cup (1 stick) plus 2 tablespoons (146 grams total) of unsalted butter
5 large eggs separated

Put chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water) and melt, stirring often.

While your chocolate butter mixture is cooling. Butter your pan and line with a parchment circle then butter the parchment.

Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and put into two medium/large bowls.
Whip the egg whites in a medium/large grease free bowl until stiff peaks are formed (do not over-whip or the cake will be dry).

With the same beater beat the egg yolks together.

Add the egg yolks to the cooled chocolate.

Fold in 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture and follow with remaining 2/3rds. Fold until no white remains without deflating the batter. {link of folding demonstration}

Pour batter into prepared pan, the batter should fill the pan 3/4 of the way full, and bake at 375F/190C

Bake for 25 minutes until an instant read thermometer reads 140F/60C.
Note – If you do not have an instant read thermometer, the top of the cake will look similar to a brownie and a cake tester will appear wet.

Cool cake on a rack for 10 minutes then unmold.

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