Week 122: Berry roses

Sometimes inspiration comes at the most unexpected time. And the inspiration for these came when I saw someone posting these pretty rose-shaped cheesecake on Facebook. I went on a hunt to find the silicone mold and was glad to have found it in my friendly local baking supply store.

However, it took me a bit longer to come up with the various components for this petit gâteau. Cream cheese mousse recipes are mysteriously rare! I finally ended up using a recipe uncle Google referred me to. I am not sure why I did not follow the suggested technique, but, I reckon it turned out okay. I also included a mixed berry crémeux using the recipe from Bachour’s new book, Bachour Chocolate, and a almond feuilletine crunch layer. For the base, I finally found an excuse to make Adriano Zumbo’s pâte friable, which I have been dreaming of making ever since I bought The Zumbo Files.

It was a very last minute bake and I am actually quite happy at how it turned out. The components came together quite nicely.

Makes 12

For the feuilletine layer

50g dark chocolate couverture

50g milk chocolate couverture

30g toasted almonds, chopped

30g Gavotte

1) Melt both chocolate in a Bain-marie.

2) Add the almonds and Gavotte cookies and fold lightly until well-mixed.

3) Spread the mixture onto baking parchment to the thickness of approximately 4mm.

4) Cut out rounds just slightly smaller than the base of your choice of mold.

5) Freeze until required.

For the mixed berries cremeux

1 gelatine sheet

100g mixed berries purée (I used a mixture of strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries)

60g whole eggs (approximately 1 large)

25g to 30g granulated sugar (depending on the sweetness of the berries)

35g unsalted butter, at room temperature

1) Bloom gelatine in cold water, then squeezed out excess water and set aside.

2) Bring the purèe to a boil.

3) Whisk the eggs in a bowl, then, temper the eggs using the hot purée.

4) While whisking continuously, heat the egg mixture to 82C.

5) Remove the mixture from heat and stir in the gelatine.

6) When mixture has cooled to room temperature, add the softened butter and emulsify using a hand blender.

7) Pour mixture into mini dome silicone molds and allow to set in the freezer.

For the pâte friable

208g unsalted butter, cubed and cold

75g icing sugar

2g fleur de sel

1 tsp vanilla bean paste

192g plain flour

1) Beat the cold butter in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until the butter has softened. Do not cream.

2) Add icing sugar, fleur de sel and vanilla bean paste and mix until just incorporated.

3) Stir in the plain flour.

4) Pat mixture into a round disc and wrap in cling film. Refrigerate until chilled.

5) Preheat convection oven to 160C.

6) Roll out the dough on a silicon mat to the thickness of 6mm.

7) Cut out 12 rounds using cake rings just slightly better than the base of the mold for your mousse. This recipe makes more than enough.

8) Remove the remaining dough and bake the cut rounds in preheated oven using the cake rings for 15 minutes.

9) Remove the cake rings and bake for a further 5 to 10 minutes until browned.

10) Remove baked pate friable from the oven and allow to cool. Pate friable is very fragile when hot and should be handled with care even after cooled to room temperature.

For the cream cheese mousse

320g heavy cream, very cold

45g icing sugar, sifted

65g granulated sugar

4 tbsp cold water

3 egg yolks

1.5 tsp gelatine powder

227g cream cheese, at room temperature

1) In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the heavy cream to the icing sugar and whisk until stiff peaks. Cover and refrigerate until required.

2) In a small saucepan, combine granulated sugar with 2 tbsp water and boil until soft-ball stage (118C).

3) In a bowl, beat the egg yolks using a hand mixer. Then pour the hot syrup in a thin stream into the yolks while beating, making sure to avoid the whisk. Continue whisking until egg yolk mixture has cooled to room temperature and is pale and ribbony.

4) Bloom the gelatine powder in remaining cold water.

5) Warm the cream cheese in a bowl set over a bain-marie. Whisk until cream cheese is smooth. Do not overheat.

6) Add the bloomed gelatine into the cream cheese and stir until completed melted.

7) Continue to whisk until cream cheese has cooled to room temperature. Gently fold in the egg yolk mixture. Finally, fold in the cold whipped cream.

To assemble

1) Fill approximately half the silicone mold with cream cheese mousse.

2) Remove one of the frozen berry cremeux and put it, dome side down, into the cream cheese.

3) Fill the remaining mold with cream cheese mouse.

4) Top with a feuilletine round, and press down to level, scrapping away any extra mousse.

5) Continue with the rest of the mold to use up all the cream cheese mousse.

6) Allow to freeze overnight.

7) Before serving, unmold the cream cheese mousse and set each a top a pate friable cookie.

I was going to finish the mousse with some glaze or spray, but, was too lazy. This is purely for aesthetics, but, I brushed the top (before filling any cream cheese mousse) of the mold with some mixed berry purée to get the red patches. I don’t think it added much to the taste, as most of the tartness came from the cremeux.

The cream cheese mousse is delicious. But I think due to the low gelatine content, it doesn’t hold very well in room temperature. In fact, a friend did a test and told me it toppled within an hour. I never had to leave mine out for that long! I reckon, the next time I make this mousse, I will step up the gelatine just a little. This recipe is a keeper! And the pate friable is amazing. Seriously. I am sure it’d taste just as good on its own.


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