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Interstellar Cheesecake

Chef Mandel Hitzer
deer & almond

This combination of contrasting textures offers a playful, palate pleasing end to a meal.

Ingredients
Ricotta Cheesecake
8 oz ricotta
¼ cup sour cream
¼ heavy cream
1 egg
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp flour
2 Tbsp glucose (or white corn syrup)

Wafer
2 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup cranberry jam

Vueve Clicquot Gelee
2 cups champagne
5 sheets of gelatin

Sponge Toffee
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup white corn syrup
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp baking soda

Garnish
8 brazil nuts, toasted
2 Tbsp of simple syrup
1 1/2 Tbsp of dried herbs (parsley, rosemary, thyme)

Method
Cheesecake

  1. Blend the egg in a blender for one minute.
  2. Add sugar, and blend for another minute.
  3. Add remaining cheesecake ingredients and blend another minute.
  4. Pour into a sealable bag and seal.
  5. Bring a pot of water to 77˚C. Place cheesecake bag into the pot and cook for 2 hours.
  6. Remove bag from water, and chill in refrigerator.

Wafer

  1. Preheat oven to 200˚F.
  2. Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, beating until a stiff, shiny meringue is formed.
  3. Fold in cranberry jam until fully combined.
  4. Spread meringue in an even layer onto a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes or until firm.

Veuve Clicquot Gelee

  1. Heat ½ cup of the champagne to a simmer.
  2. Bloom gelatin sheets in cold water, enough to cover. Remove gelatin sheets, and whisk into hot champagne.
  3. Pour hot mixture into remaining wine and let cool (this preserves the alcohol content).
  4. Refrigerate until needed.

Sponge Toffee

  1. Bring to boil; cook, without stirring but brushing down side of pan occasionally with pastry brush dipped in cold water, until candy thermometer reaches hard-crack stage of 300°F (149°C), or when 1 tsp (5 mL) hot syrup dropped into cold water forms hard brittle threads, about 10 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat. Standing back and averting face, whisk in baking soda. (Caramel will bubble and sputter and increase in volume.) Whisk in vanilla.
  3. Pour into greased foil-lined 13- x 9-inch (3.5 L) metal cake pan. Let cool in pan on rack without disturbing, about 2 hours.
  4. Break into 1-1/2-inch (4 cm) pieces. (Make-ahead: Store layered between waxed paper in airtight container for up to 1 month.)

Garnish

  1. Cut brazil nuts in half and toast in a toaster oven at 350˚F until browned.
  2. Pulverize herbs in a small blender until they are a powder.
  3. Coat nuts in a touch of simple syrup and roll in the herbs to coat.

Assembly

  1. Chop gelee into chunks and set on plate. Place desired amount of cheesecake on top.
  2. Top with other components.

Yield 4 servings

DEER + ALMOND

Chef and owner Mandel Hitzer’s hip, rustic Exchange District eatery boasts a stunning menu of small plates for sharing. Blond wood, oversized filament bulbs, and local art by the likes…

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