Eight years after the last article focused on his desserts (so good… Magazine #9), we meet again with Cortez in so good #26 to take the pulse of his curiosity in this field and appreciate his evolution. In the magazine we will see four desserts that cover a very wide range of flavors and ingredients, which make clear his penchant for floral and herbaceous notes through oxalis and chamomile flowers and kaffir and marigold leaves, for example, and the gesha coffee variety, also known for its floral notes. In recipes like this the following one also resorts to techniques more typical of haute cuisine such as fermentation and cold smoking. But beyond the variety of ingredients and techniques, one of the main protagonists of these proposals is the beet. Thus, we find two desserts that reflect vastly different paths but share the starting point. It is an example of the creative drive of an unclassifiable chef.
Gold beet panna cotta, bergamot, Osetra caviar, fermented cashew cream, mandarin, nasturtium
Fermented cashew cream
- 160 g organic cashews
- 1 u probiotic capsule, excluding prebiotics
- 60 g fresh spring water
Soak the organic cashews in cold water for 4 hours. Drain and place in a high speed blender with the fresh spring water and a pinch of salt. Blend until completely smooth and the consistency of thick cream. Adjust with additional water if necessary to adjust consistency. Mix in the probiotic powder and lightly sprinkle the top with additional salt. Cover with a tight lid. Leave in a warm room, approximately 24ºC (76F) for 12 hours. Check fermentation and leave for an additional 6 hours if desired. Once fermented, refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.
Roasted gold beets
- 600 g medium gold beets, stems removed and washed thoroughly
- 30 g grapeseed oil
- 20 g organic sugar
- Himalayan salt
Place the beets on a large sheet of aluminum foil and drizzle with the oil, sugar and lightly with salt. Fold to make a sealed pouch. Place on a baking dish and bake at 176ºC (350F) for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until just tender. Remove from oven and while wearing gloves, remove the skins and place in a bowl. Reserve 360 g for the panna cotta and 200 g for thecrisps. Cut the remaining few beets into thin rounds and refrigerate until needed.
Gold beet panna cotta
- 42 g cream
- 50 g water
- 50 g sugar
- 8 g gelatin rehydrated 3x in cold water
- 360 g roasted gold beets, peeled and diced
Place the cream, water and sugar in a small saucepan to simmer. Remove from heat and add the gelatin to melt. Place the hot beets in a blender on high. Slowly drizzle in the cream sugar mixture until smooth. Line a 15×15 cm (6×6 inch) pan with plastic wrap. Pour the beet mixture in to pan no more than 2.50 cm (1 inch) thick. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Cover until needed. Cut into 3/4 inch wide and 4 inch long pieces for service.
Gold beet crisps
- 200 g roasted gold beet purée
- 35 g organic sugar
Preheat oven to 93ºC (200F). In a small saucepan, lightly heat the beet purée with the sugar to 45ºC. Transfer the mixture to blender and blend on high speed for 1 minute. Line two baking sheets with one: each. Divide the beet mixture between the two pans. With an offset spatula, smooth the purée over the entire silpat. Tap each baking sheet on the counter to remove any air bubbles. Place in the oven for 3 hours or until completely dry and slightly brittle. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Break into small shards and keep in an airtight container with silicagel.
Candied Bergamot Lemon Peel
- 6 u bergamot lemons, peeled and any white piths removed
- 200 g water
- 130 g sugar
Place the lemon peels in cold water and bring to a boil then drain. Repeat this 8 times. Bring the measured water and sugar to a simmer to melt the sugar then add the bergamot peels. Simmer for at least 40 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Reserve in its own syrup. Cut the peels into fine julienne before serving.
- 100 g fresh squeezed mandarin juice
- 100 g fresh squeezed cara cara juice
- 100 g fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
- 30 g rum
- 25 g lavender honey
- zest of 1 bergamot lemon
- 4 mint leaves
Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan except for the mint. Simmer on medium heat until reduced my 3/4. Remove from heat and add the mint leaves. Cover and allow to infuse for 15 minutes. Strain and refrigerate until needed.
Place a sliver of beet panna cotta on a tray and lightly coat with a thin layer of fermented cashew cream. Followed by a thin layer of mandarin glaze. Top with slivers of beets, beet shards, bergamot peels, Osetra caviar and nasturtium flowers.