Tag Archives: Lindt Speciality Cooking Chocolate

Duck Liver Parfait, Gingerbread Crumbs and Chocolate Foam

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I’m a sucker for a pate, so this duck liver parfait was calling to me the first time I ever looked through “In The Mix”.  I’ve had half an eye open for duck livers since then, but haven’t seen any.  The poultry shop at our local market could get me some in – but I thought a 2 kilo bag was a bit excessive, I mean – I love pate, but 2 kilos?!?  I ended up at the Queen Victoria Market, where the lovely folk at Nifra Poultry helped me out.  Believe it or not, the parking for an hour cost me more than the duck livers – they were under $3 for 300 grams!

Every time I go to the Queen Victoria Market I ask myself why I don’t go there more often, and I’ve now made a commitment to myself that I will.  The produce is second to none.  If you do what I did, and go just before closing on Saturday afternoon, the bargains in the meat/poultry/seafood section are amazing, and everything looks just so fresh and lovely.  I’m so lucky to have it on my doorstep, I just need to get there more.

This is not a difficult recipe at all – it takes some time, including parfait cooling and chocolate foam chilling, but there are no difficult elements as such.  That’s one of the things I love about my thermomix – most of it is hands free cooking – so even if something takes an hour to do – you can go outside, do the washing, play with the kids, do some work or whatever, because you don’t need to stand over a saucepan stirring or watching.

The Parfait

The parfait is as easy as can be.  I’m not sure if I failed the butter clarification part though.  I used Western Star butter this time, as I had it in the fridge, and I am generally a home brand girl for butter.  I drained it through a fresh, damp kitchen cloth, but it didn’t do much in the way of trapping the solids.  It sat on the bench for a while as I did the onions, garlic, and the reduction, and I noticed as I was pouring it in that there was some thicker yellowy-white stuff at the bottom…so I’m not sure if that was what the kitchen cloth was supposed to capture, or just the process of butter solidifying.

You need to make sure you prepare the duck livers really well.  I bought extra duck liver from Nifra Poultry, by 50 grams. Next time I’ll do it by 100 grams. as there are always bits of sinew and gristly bits in the livers, so I chopped them all out, as I didn’t want any of the in my lovely parfait.

I used a pretty decent port (against someone’s wishes ;-)) but I’m a firm believer in using the best you can get for wines in cooking…if you wouldn’t drink it, then you shouldn’t cook with it!

I used a cereal bowl to pour the parfait into, and used the soup bowl as the bain marie container.  There was a little more parfait that would fit in the bowl, but not so much as I was worried about not using it.  I propped up the bain marie with egg rings, so it wouldn’t cover the holes of the varoma.  Lucky I made those crumpets last week, or I would have completely forgotten about egg rings – and they were great to use for this.

This makes a huge amount of parfait – I served this to 5 adults and there was plenty left over.

The Gingerbread Crumb

Oh, this smells gorgeous! So gingery – it makes me remember Christmases in Europe. I think I should have kept it in the oven a little longer though – it looked cooked on top, but once I cut it in half, the inside was still quite moist.  I kept the crumb in the oven a little longer than suggested, just to dry it out a little more.  Be warned – 5 grams of ginger is quite a lot – the spice jar I had of it was only 25 grams in total, so you’ll have to shake it out for a while, but I assume that’s what makes it smell so beautiful.  (And taste so beautiful too – you only need half the gingerbread for the crumb, so the other half makes a nice little treat to nibble on).

Next time I make it, I think I’ll only blitz about a third of the cake to make the crumb, as it makes quite a lot.  I’ll also spread it out on a much bigger tray with more defined edges than the one I used – mine was piled a little high in places, which is why it took longer to dry out, I think.

The Chocolate Foam

The chocolate foam wasn’t as bitter as I thought it would be – but it was still delicious.  I had it in the fridge for a few hours before I served it, so I put it in the sink of hot water about half way up the siphon for about 15 minutes before I served it.  Before I tried spraying it, I shook it to make sure what was in there was liquid – you can hear a distinctive sound of liquid when it – so make sure you hear it before you start siphoning.  It wasn’t as  bitter as I thought it would be – and it was pretty liquid, so I need some more siphoning practice.  Maybe I let it warm up for too long?

The verdict

Altogether, this was lovely. It’s extremely rich, so you only need to prepare very small serves.  I’m still not 100% on the combination of flavours, but each element by itself was lovely, if not unusual together.

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Posted by on June 4, 2012 in Entrees


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Kirsch Ganache

So rich, so delicious!

Perfect as a sweet little bite with coffee, the kirsch ganache is great!  And, what’s more, I didn’t even need to go and buy kirsch – we had an ancient bottle in the liquor cabinet so I used that.  Be warned – it’s a fair slug of kirsch – but the result is not too overpowering. It makes about 100 small little chocolates, and while I would have liked to eat it all, I ended up giving some of it to my son’s kinder teachers. They loved it!

It’s also really easy to make…always a bonus.

My tips:

Use really good cocoa.  This is not the place for the Cadbury Bourneville of the world –  I bought the Van Houten Dutch Cocao at the local supermarket.  It’s ok – but I’m sure I could find better.  Another project!

Don’t be tempted to put it in the fridge until it’s mostly set at room temperature.  Once you do put it in the fridge, I’d leave it there for a few hours before you start cutting.

I used a lamington tin lined with glad wrap to pour the ganache in to.  I also tapped it on the bench a few times to get rid of any air bubbles that might have been in there – I did see a few on the top once I poured it in, which was what prompted me to do it in the first place.

If I had my time again, I’d wait until I was just about to serve it before cutting the squares off and covering them with cocoa.  I did the whole lot at once, and the cocoa absorbs over time.

I used the Lindt 70% cocoa chocolate.  It tastes great.  I also bought (but didn’t use) the special Lindt Speciality Cooking Chocolate.  I’ll get around to making it again one day as it was pretty good – so I’ll try it with that next time.   I know our supermarket often has the regular 70% Lindt on sale, so I’ll keep my eye out and stock up when they’re on sale next.

The UHT cream was only available in 200ml packs at my supermarket.  I used just under three packs for this recipe.

When I was thermomixing the cream, glucose syrup, kirsch and salt, it didn’t actually reach 80 degrees before the recommended time had elapsed – it still worked and produced a pretty good result.

When measuring out the glucose syrup, I found it easier to put the lid on the thermomix, invert the MC, and then use the scales function.  It would be even easier if next time I ran the MC under some very hot water, to make sure than when I went to add the glucose syrup to the mix, it would come out of the MC a little quicker!!  As they say in North America – watching it drip out was really as slow as molasses in January!


Posted by on March 13, 2012 in Sweet Things


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