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Alain Ducasse's pistachio and strawberry dessert for Chelsea Flower Show

Alain Ducasse's pistachio and strawberry dessert for the Chelsea Flower Show

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PT24H

Alain Ducasse at The Dorchesterre-launched its classic lunch hour menu to celebrate the Chelsea Flower Show.

The dishes paired traditional French delicacies with seasonal ingredients inspired by the show. The menu featured delicate Vegetable Tarte in Bloom; a classic French COOKPOT of Hereford Snails marinated in wild mushroom and parsley butter; Lemon sole with a side of spring garden; and a dessert of Pistachio and Wild Strawberry field.

All dishes were perfect examples of Ducasse’s passion for cooking with the freshest seasonal ingredients and offered diners a great opportunity to celebrate the start of summer.

Just moments away from Royal Hospital Chelsea where the show is hosted, Tom's Kitchen Chelsea also served up a floral inspired menu showcasing the best British seasonal ingredients. Tom's dishes also made superb use of the spring's finest flowers.

On the menu, crab marinated in basil mayonnaise, cucumber, and nasturtium leaf; cod with apricot rose and saffron and a stunning courgette and pistachio risotto with courgette flowers. Diners could finish their meal with a vibrant dessert of rose-poached cherries, elderflower served with lavender panna cotta.

For a wonderful drink to round off the experience there was Toms’ Garden Cocktail. Presented in a charming porcelain planter for two to share, this gin-based cocktail featured hibiscus syrup, lemon juice and a dash of violet syrup.

Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester has very kindly shared the recipe for the strawberry dessert for you to create at home.

Pistachio and Wild Strawberry Field

Ingredients

1
Preheat the oven to 160°C/gas mark 3
2
To make the crumbly shortbread, mix the icing sugar, butter, the different salts, and end with the flour, cornflour and the vanilla to form breadcrumbs. Bring together and knead briefly until smooth. Don’t over-handle the dough as this will make it greasy and ‘tough’
3
Roll out the dough to a 1.5cm thickness on a lined, flat baking sheet. Cut the dough using 8cm ring cutters and, leaving the rings on, bake in the oven for 10 minutes until lightly golden and firm to the touch
4
To make the crème brûlée with pistachio and olive oil, scald the milk and cream in a saucepan then remove from the heat. In a bowl, mix the sugar and the egg yolk then gradually add the milk and cream, mixing together with a wooden spoon
5
Heat the custard mixture over a bain marie, making sure that the temperature rises no more than 90°C – stir the mix quite often during the cooking as it thickens. Your cream should remain a bit wobbly in the middle
6
Remove from the stove, set aside to cool to room temperature then weigh out 380g of the custard mix. Soak the gelatine leaves in cold water for about 5 minutes until soft, then squeeze out the liquid and add to the custard along with the olive oil and pistachio paste
7
Blend the mixture to incorporate it fully, then pour a 1.5cm thick layer on top of the cooked and cooled shortbread, with the rings still in place
8
Add the shortbread and crème brûlée to the freezer
9
Meanwhile, make the strawberry marmalade. In a casserole dish, gently heat the strawberries and sugar until the sugar has dissolved and the strawberries have broken down. Slightly increase the heat to thicken the mixture and achieve a marmalade texture
10
Add the lemon juice, increase the heat and reduce until thick. Allow to cool then reserve in the fridge until needed
11
Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas mark 2
12
To make the coconut biscuit, blitz the coconut to form a crumb and mix with the sugar. Add the salt and melted butter and mix to combine. Lightly whip the eggs whites to a soft peak and fold into the mixture
13
Spread carefully onto a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Whilst the dough is still warm and flexible, cut and shape the biscuits around more 8cm rings. Leave to cool on a wire rack
14
To make the strawberry sorbet, dissolve the sugar in a pan along with all of the strawberries. Pass into a paco jet and freeze for 24 hours. 3 hours before serving, churn the mixture (or blitz the mixture and churn in a regular ice cream maker)
15
To dress the plate, remove the crème brulées from the freezer, remove the rings and place the coconut biscuit rings around them. Allow to come to room temperature
16
Surround with the coconut biscuit and decorate the crème brûlée with small dots of marmalade. Add strawberries and pistachio halves to the top and serve alongside a scoop of strawberry sorbet
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