Monday, October 03, 2005

Dessert Break

Am working like a dog and I decided that I needed a dessert break. I went into the kitchen with the best of intentions. I was going to get a Chinese pear .. but ... I opened my fridge. Always a bad mistake.

And I saw my unopened tub of mascarpone. Hmmm ... I rationalised that I should use it before the use-by-date came & went. But what to have with it? I did not have any strawberries, so I rummaged around my veggie bin. Ah ha! Oranges! Brilliant. I had an idea. I was going to make a variation of my orange and coffee tiramisu. I would make the tiramisu except I did not have any sponge fingers. So variation it is.

I went into this whole thing in my usual fashion, which is the extremely well-thought out system of winging it. I grabbed the bottle of Cointreau, then I took out my box of hot chocolate powder, the mascarpone of course and then ... I passed by my bottle of candied ginger. Hmmm, a slight surprise to the taste sensation. Oh yes, yes. I grabbed that too. I started peeling the segments of Mandarin oranges, making sure to remove as much of the pith as possible. And then I started making a very thick hot chocolate such that it is more like a chocolate sauce then beverage. As I made this, I was going to add condensed milk to it when I decided that I would add Kahlua instead. If I was going to make this dessert alcholic I might as well go the whole hog then.

I gave it a name as much of a mouthful as the dessert. Look, I'm tired and am facing several more hours of work before I can get any sleep. Gimme a break! I'll think of a better name later.

Steph's Orange Mascarpone in Hot Chocolate Cointreau Sauce & Ginger
I whole Mandarin orange - peel it into segments, removing as much of the pith as possible
About 5 dessertspoons of mascarpone
2 tbsps of Cointreau
Half a cup of milk
4 tsp of hot chocolate powder
1 1/2 tbsp of Kahlau
1 tsp of diced candied ginger

1. Blend the mascarpone with the Cointreau
2. Zap the milk in the microwave for about 1 1/2 min on High to heat
3. Blend the hot chocolate powder into the hot milk and mix well to dissolve
4. Add the Kahlau
5. Place the orange segments in a bowl and spoon the mascarpone over
6. Drizzle the hot chocolate sauce over
7. Sprinkle the candied ginger on top to garnish

I admit, I was in a hurry and I was lazy or else I would segment the oranges properly. That is, I would have cut them using the knife so you do not get the skin or any pith at all. It would have enhanced the taste for sure but I needed to get back to work and this was supposed to be a quick dessert that I can whip up in 15 mins flat or less.

The ginger added dimension to the dessert in terms of taste and texture and I am glad I tried it but next time I think I will also soak the ginger in Cointreau before dredging in icing sugar. Also, an alternative would be to use chopped pistachios. Oh yums. Unfortunately, for some reason I hae not been able to find nice unsalted pistachios yet. The ones I've seen are disgusting.

All in all, dessert was fairly yummy ... anytime mascarpone is in my dessert, I am a happy camper. Tastewise, it scores an 7.75/10 and healthwise ... uh oh ... I can only give it a 5.5/10. It is not the healthiest of dessert but I thought I deserved it for working so hard.

Yes, yes, I rationalise too much.

Categories - Sweet Thang


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