Friday, December 26, 2014

Cooking with Sea Cider Prohibition – Dessert II Recipe

Recipe Pairing Flavors:
A bourbon barrel aged cider full of aromas and flavors of caramel, molasses and rum with a note of toasted oak, that’s all wrapped up in tart-sweet heirloom apples.  Mouthfilling, full-bodied and gently effervescent, Prohibition finishes dry and crisp, with a pleasingly lingering warmth.

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Entrée recipe?

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Side Dish II recipe?

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Dessert recipe?


The perfect ending to a perfect meal.

Ah, Parfait.

Yes, I think I said that already. 

It's Parfait.  Which is just “perfect.”  In French.  But, since perfection is always in the eye of the beholder, what do you see when you think of Parfait?

Is it what you'd receive when ordering in Paris’s late 19th century – a frozen dessert made from cream and eggs, sugar and syrup, that's then topped up with a layer of fruit?

Or perhaps, your idea of perfection is more what Parfait morphed into in America 100 years later, when it rode a wave of popularity as a yogurt and granola fueled health food treat.

Whatever your definition, it's somebody's Parfait of perfection, and I think that’s really what makes it one of its charms.  Part architecture, part improvisation, part colorful and flavorful treat, and it's all wrapped up in the layers of Parfait.

But don't limit your search for Parfait’s perfection just to desserts, for the French serve many other foods “en parfait” or Parfait-in-style.  Think of seafood parfaits or ones made with vegetables and you get the idea.  And even foie gras parfaits are not out of the question, inhabiting the most elegant menus.
For all that’s needed to achieve Parfait is a layering of different ingredients, some with a creamy consistency, and then a tall, clear glass in which to show it all off.

It's perfect.  It's Parfait, and it’s elegant or casual.  Sometimes savory and sometimes sweet, but always a fleeting statement of edible perfection in the moment that it's served.

So, let's get a crack at perfection, however fleeting it may be, by wrapping up our cider themed holiday menu with some Prohibition Parfait. 

It's a finish, with citrus meeting tang, that's designed to really wake up those taste buds.  With layers of zippy lime curd alternating with a slightly sweetened tart apple whipped cream.

I'd call it an edible creamy palate cleanser designed to whisk away the richness that preceded it.  And it would probably be doubly perfect with a glass of Prohibition cider.


Serves a crowd

⅔ cup fresh lime juice (about 3-4 large limes)
½ cup + 3 tablespoons sugar
3 large eggs
4 ounces (one stick) unsalted butter (soft, cubed)
1 teaspoon lemon zest (finely chopped)

1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons Prohibition cider

Fill a large saucepan ⅓ full of water and bring to a simmer.
In a metal bowl large enough to fit over a saucepan, whisk together the sugar and eggs, then add the lime juice.  Place the bowl atop the saucepan and add the cubes of butter.

Stir mixture constantly until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
Remove bowl from top of saucepan and empty the pan’s simmering water into the sink.
Set the pan in the sink and fill it up with cold water, then set the bowl of lime curd back atop the sauce pan and stir gently (about 5 minutes) until cooled.

Stir in the lime zest, then place a piece of plastic wrap atop curd’s surface to prevent a skin from forming.  Refrigerate until cool.

Once the curd is cool, prepare the cider whipped cream by combining the cream, sugar and cider and beating with a whisk or mixing with a hand blender until cream forms stiff peaks.

To serve, alternate layers of lime curd and cider whipped cream in a tall, narrow glass, finishing with a layer of whipped cream atop.  Garnish with additional lime zest and a thin slice of lime, if desired.

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