29th Recipe: Moulin Rouge

Well, here we are at the second to highest difficulty level. 2 1/2 macarons. There are only 3 recipes in this level. and there are a full 10 in the highest difficulty level. Do I sound intimidated ??? I feel this one went really well, in spite of my fear. Here’s the pic of how it should look…..

The décor on the sides of this dessert are not just stenciled on, but rather baked in the layer of cake that is wrapped around it. This visual may help…

Not easy, but not hard either. Just a little tricky. You need to freeze the red design of tuile batter first, so you can pour the almond cake batter over it to bake. I picked a different style of stencil for my decoration. Here’s my version…

The flavor combinations used in this recipe were so strong and I was surprised that they worked so well on the palette. ( Doesn’t that sound “chef-fie”? ) Seriously though, this dessert is layers of silky strawberry mousse, and coconut meringue paired with black pepper. Then wrapped with the almond cake, and finished with strawberry mirror glaze. In case you missed it….yes, Black Pepper. Quite a bit of it. Enough to give it a little kick! As I said, it worked surprisingly well with the coconut.

The mousse was made with fresh strawberry puree and unflavored gelatin to set it. You stacked the layers in an acetate ring, and chilled it till it set. Once the acetate was removed , it held together pretty good, although it sagged a little when cut. Everyone who tasted it seemed to enjoy it … even my 91 year-old neighbor, who despite being very traditional, especially liked the coconut/pepper layer.

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