Bananas, Blueberries, and Toffee, Oh My!

Thursday, July 26, 2012 6:00

Sinful Additions to the Dessert Menu

By Casey Pukl

This summer, the Anthology kitchen staff has certainly  been turning up the temperature on our menu! Every week, new dishes are added that continue to outshine the ones that came before! It’s getting difficult for me to find adequate words to describe the amazing flavors I’ve been tasting lately. Pastry Chef Jamie Crone’s latest desserts are no exception. Read on to find out about the latest dishes!

Banana Pudding Cake
Toffee Sauce, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

This cake is absolutely heavenly. Thick slices of ripe bananas are sandwiched between rich, dense layers of banana cake topped with ice cream and smothered in toffee sauce. Seriously, could it get any better? Oh wait, there’s a toffee cookie on top, so there’s that.

Pastry Chef Jamie Crone says, “The delicious flavors coming from ripened pureed bananas, brown sugar, dark rum, vanilla, and cinnamon in this dessert are irresistible,” and boy is she right! She also gave us a glimpse into the preparation of this dessert.

The toffee sauce is made by bringing heavy cream, brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt to a boil. The heat is then lowered to allow the mixture to simmer to reduce and thicken. Then add a little extra heavy cream at the end to cool the sauce and bring it all together.

This stunning dessert is also served with a Hazelnut Florentine cookie. To make the cookie, Crone brings butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar to a boil.  She then adds a little heavy cream and all purpose flour. Heat the mixture to 225 degrees F. Remove from heat and add crushed hazelnuts and a pinch of salt, then allow to cool and thicken. Scoop with small ice cream scoop onto a parchment lined sheet tray with 2-3 inches between each scoop. The cookies will spread a lot when baked. Bake at 325 for about 10 minutes or until they contain a deep caramel color.

Stack up all of your incredible ingredients and serve this little plate of heaven warm.

Deconstructed Blueberry Cobbler
Vanilla Panna Cotta, Angel Food Croutons, Oatmeal Ice Cream

This elegant version of the classic American blueberry cobbler is not only visually arresting, but also demands the attention of your palate.

To start, the blueberries are cooked down with sugar and orange zest.

The vanilla bean panna cotta is a rich and pudding-like consistency and is set with gelatin to hold its shape.

Now onto what I consider the all-star of this dish— angel food croutons. These moist, fluffy cake pieces are based on mostly egg whites and sugar but then they are folded with flour, salt, vanilla, and almond extract. They are then baked at 325 until golden brown, then pulled apart and toasted again until crispy like croutons. They have almost a meringue-like texture at the end.

The oatmeal ice cream is made by steeping milk and cream with vanilla bean and toasted oats. The mixture is then tempered with egg yolks and brown sugar, cooled, then spun through an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Lastly, candied orange peel is used for garnish. To make the candied peels, cook them down in equal parts sugar and water until somewhat translucent in color. Pull them out and let them dry until hardened.

Be sure to come on in and give these latest creations a try!