Week 6

Saturday, August 20, 2011

This week I was only able to attend class on Thursday (see previous post). I made Bananas Foster with spiced walnuts and tostones. I was not the only one in the class that wasn't enamored with the recipe that we were given. We decided to sort of follow the basic compilation of elements for the plate, but we definitely changed quite a bit of it.

I decided to make my "French Cakes" instead of the basic French Toast that the recipe called for. French Cakes are my own creation of a very egg-y pancake batter spiked with Saigon Cinnamon that the bread is dipped into instead of just the egg and milk mixture that French Toast usually calls for. This means my batter contains flour and baking powder and puffs up a little bit when cooked. We were using French Bread instead of regular bread for this recipe, so I cut it into squares and dipped it in the batter and cooked it off.

I also made my own spiced walnuts, loosely following the recipe for spiced pecans we make at work, but altering it a little because I like a little more of a cinnamon sugary texture to the outside of my spiced nuts. *insert joke here*

I made several shapes of tostones (fried plantains). I small diced some, made some "french fry" shaped pieces, and also made some long, thin pieces. These all gave a nice crunchy, salty element to the plate.

Then we had the flambeed bananas. I chose to make a separate caramel sauce in addition to the sauce that comes with flambeed bananas. I wanted to garnish the plate with the thick caramel, and then use the banana sauce on top of the French cakes.

I took a piece of banana and hollowed out the top with a melon baller. I added bacardi 151 and lit it just before "service" so it added a cool element to the presentation. The blue flame doesn't show up well in photos, though. I plated two versions, a large and a small. On the big plated version, I also bruleed the outside of the banana for a crunchy factor.

I LOVE how these came out. I like the small plate better, I think, just because it's a little more sophisticated.


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