Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Matter of Taste

I just had the opportunity and pleasure of pre-screening my boss and Chef Paul Liebrandt's new documentary "A Matter of Taste" ,"A Mouthful". Let me just say one word about this film...inspiring. I left the Tribeca screening room with an overwelming sense of pride and enthusiasm. Pride for working for and with one of this countries greatest chefs, and enthusiasm for motivating me to create great desserts for him. The film was a brilliant overview of Paul's career here in NY. The documentary really goes into a great amount of detail about the passion he has for great food. The level of sophistication, refinement and finesse he shows through out the film is evident in every dish that comes out of Cortons kitchen. Below is a link to a trailer for the documentary which will air in June on HBO.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

New Dessert

Green apple, coffee, cardamom, yogurt, quinine

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is most typically associated with beauty products. You can also use in cuisine. Aloe Vera is a perennial plant in the Lilacea family. It originated in eastern and southern Africa. People first, and still to this day use it for its medicinal properties. Usually these plants need to mature for up to 5 years before it can be considered for use. In order to make this plant palatable you must first remove its skin. You will then be left with a very sticky and undesirable mass. You must take this mass and soak it in water baths (changing the water every couple of hours) until all of the resinous matter has been thouroughly cleansed. You will then be left with a translucent vegetable that has a very gelatinous texture, and in my opinion a very unique and interesting flavor. Aloe can be used as a thickener/ emulsifier, and even as a gelling agent. To properly disperse and hydrate the aloe in your aqueous medium you must emulsify it into whatever you wish to thicken/emulsify/gel and bring this mixture to a boil. It has emulsification properties close to that of soy lecithin. Its gelling capibility is similar to that of a standard protein based gelatin. I really believe that aloe has a wide range of use in the pastry kitchen. It has a very pleasant taste when properly handled and treated. The only downfall to this pant is the time it takes to properly mature (3-5 years). A lot of companies now sell already processed aloe that is ready to eat/drink. The plant has a vast array of medical and well as nutritional benefits to its consumption. It contains many nutrients that your body craves on a daily basis including Vitamin C, and antioxidants. I have used aloe in the past to make sorbet that I "pacotized" which came out very pleasing. It was paired with strawberries and black sesame. I would love to experiment more with its gelling and emulsifying properties, rather than just in its raw state. Below is a picture of the plant before processing

Friday, March 11, 2011

Pastry Chef at WD~50

Malcolm Livingston II......
wins for the cheesiest smile ever

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

V-Day at WD~50

Clove cake, milk chocolate cream, violet ice cream, violet sauce, raspberry meringue, candied nibs, milk foam
Wish I could have eaten this Malcolm

Sunday, March 6, 2011