Tomatoes and Goats cheese, Warm Dark Chocolate and Nutmeg Powder, Raspberry and Basil Vodka.
This is a really genuinely delicious starter which is beautifully simple and effective in how the flavours marry together. The principles of this dish are pretty straight forward but you do need a little equipment (and iSi cream whipper and Nitrous Oxide) and a specialist ingredient (Tapioca Maltodextrin), both of which are cheap and easy to get hold off, and available from www.Modernist-Chef.com
I’m really happy with this dish, I had a lot of fun working on it (possibly due to extensive vodka tasting), and it has some of my favorite flavours complementing and accentuating each other but most importantly it tastes great. The tomato and goats cheese is just lovely and needs no messing with, it speaks for itself. The Chocolate and nutmeg powder works amazingly with all the other flavours of the dish and instantly turns from powder to liquid chocolate in your mouth. The Final piece of the dish, the Raspberry and Basil infused and sweetened Vodka is delicious on its own but I specifically designed it to go with this dish and it is the finishing touch that completes the starter.
Tomato and Goats Cheese
First grab a couple the best tomatoes you can get your hands on, ideally get smallish sweet tomatoes. Slice the Tomatoes to bite sized pieces and arrange them on the plate. Crumble some goats cheese over the tomatoes then simply drizzle over a good olive oil and finish with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. It’s that easy.
Raspberry and Basil Vodka
170g Fresh Raspberries
7g Dried Basil (you could use fresh basil but this will alter the flavour)
100g Simple Syrup (50g water with 50g caster sugar, heated and stirred till sugar dissolves then cooled)
Place the raspberries and basil into an iSi cream whipper and pour the vodka over them. Charge the whipper with one Nitrous oxide cartridge, shake for thirty seconds, then rest the whipper for thirty seconds, now vent the nitrous and strain the liquid through muslin. This is utilizing the same ultra quick infusion technique devised by Dave Arnold that I talk about here. Take 200g of the infused Vodka and mix in 100g of the simple syrup. Serve it in a shot glass with a few 2mm cubes of tomato flesh floating in the Vodka.
Warm Dark Chocolate and Nutmeg Powder
100g Really good quality dark chocolate
One whole Nutmeg freshly grated
About 20g Tapioca Maltodextrin (Texturas Malto)
Tiny Pinch of salt
Break up the chocolate and place it in a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water. As the Chocolate begins to melt add the grated nutmeg and a small pinch of slat. Once the chocolate is melted stir to mix in the nutmeg. Now bit by bit, whilst stirring, add the Tapioca Maltodextrin until the chocolate has the look of breadcrumb consistency. Press the chocolate powder though a sieve to form a fine powder. When your ready to serve the dish heat the powder in a dry frying pan for about a minuit until you just begin to smell the chocolate scent rising from the pan, it won’t melt or alter the texture and will remain a powder which you can spoon onto the plate and as soon as it comes into contact with moisture in your mouth will instantly turn back to smooth melting chocolate on your tongue.