I hope everybody had a nice Christmas with good food and lots of presents in friends and family company!
We definitely had. Although as we prefer diversity in food we decided to abandon the traditional turkey with all the trimmings and go for something new and surprising tastes this year.
And we though we should cook Scandinavian-inspired feast instead. Well, sort of.
Besides Ikea's Swedish meatballs I knew close to nothing about Scandinavian food and had to carry out extensive recipe research to figure out the menu.
Finally I was in charge of the dessert and starters and salads. And menu included also Norwegian meatballs and ham.
I was thinking of a dessert with rich berry mousse topped with blueberries which to be different and much lighter than a cheese cake. A friend suggested I should look for a dacquoise recipe for the sponge and I was convinced that is what I needed. To be honest I expected it to be a bit less fluffy and less airy - but it was not bad at all! And went perfectly well with the airy and light mousse.
For the dacquoise I adapted this recipe. And reduced it by half.
So this is the recipe for an 8 inch cake.
For the dacquoise:
3 egg whites
35 g caster sugar
90 g powdered sugar
75 g ground almonds
1.5 tbsp plain flour
50 gr chopped roasted hazelnuts
for spreading :
4 tbsp lemon curd
4 tbsp mascarpone cheese
for the mousse:
200 gr blueberries - pureed and drained through a sieve
3 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp elderflower cordial
600 ml whipping cream
1 sachet gelatin - enough to jelly bout 400 ml
For the topping:
50 gr raspberries
100 gr blueberries
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp lingon berry cordial (I bought from Ikea)
1 tsp gelatin soaked in 3 tsp water
100 gr fresh blueberries
fresh mint leaves
Beat the egg whites with the caster sugar until firm peaks form.
Combine the powdered sugar, flour and ground almonds and sieve. Fold into the egg whites carefully in 3-4 times. Finally add the roasted chopped hazelnuts. Be careful the eggs don't lose much f the air.
Line a baking pan with a baking sheet and draw two 8 inch circles. Make sure they are 1-2 inches apart. Cover with another sheet of baking paper.
Place the mixture into a piping bag with 1/2 inch tip and starting from the centre of the circles spiralling make two big 8 inch circles.
Heat the oven to 180 degrees C (160 for fan oven). Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool down.
Sweeten the blueberry puree and add the elderflower cordial.
Soak the gelatin in the water and let dissolve in bain marie until it stands clear.
Whip the cream until it starts to thickens. Add the fruit puree and continue to whip. When it reached the mousse consistency take 2 tbsp of it and mix with the gelatin, then add the gelatin to the cream. Leave in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Mix well the lemon curd and mascarpone cheese.
To Assemble the cake:
Place the first dacquoise disk on the bottom of a deep spring form and spread with 1/3 of the lemon curd and mascarpone on top. Cover with half of the mousse. Spread the remaining lemon curd and mascarpone mix on both sides of the second disk. Place on top of the mousse and cover with the remaining half of the mousse.
Place in the fridge overnight.
On the next day make the topping.
Puree the raspberries and blueberries with the sugar. Sieve. Add the cordial.
Soak the gelatin in water until the water is absorbed. Heat a pan with water and let the gelatin stand over it (bain marie) until dissolved and clear.
Add the gelatin to the fruit puree. Pour over the cake. Sprinkle the fresh blueberries and mint leaves. Store in the fridge for 2-3 hours.