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Champagne Gelée with Raspberries

Champagne Gelée with Raspberries



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Coat a 4-cup mold with nonstick spray. Take a clean paper towel and remove most of it; you just want the slightest film of it on the inside of the mold. Alternately, have 6 clear glasses ready. (Their volume can vary but between 4 and 8 ounces is best.)

Pour about half the bottle of wine in a saucepan; you can do this by eye. Gently stir in sugar and allow any bubbles to subside. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the wine; do not let it clump in one spot. Allow the gelatin to soften for 5 minutes. Heat over medium heat, occasionally whisking gently for a few minutes or until sugar and gelatin are dissolved. Remove from heat and gently whisk in remaining sparkling wine. Let the mixture sit for a few moments for bubbles and foam to subside and skim off any remaining.

Refrigerate for 20 minutes and check texture. You want to catch it just as it is thickening. Check every 10 to 20 minutes until it has thickened but is still pourable.

Pour a little of the gelatin mixture into the prepared mold (or your glasses). Add a few berries and some pomegranate seeds and a bit of gold, which you can put in place with a tweezer. Add more gelatin mixture and repeat with fruit and gold until you have used up all of the gelatin. (You might have fruit left over.)

Refrigerate overnight. To unmold, fill a large, deep bowl with warm water. Dip the mold into the water for about 5 seconds and remove. Tip the mold gently and see if the edges of the gelatin are coming free. Place platter on top of mold and invert. Repeat warm-water technique if necessary. Serve cold. Gelée in glasses can be served as is. Serve with extra berries, if you like.


French Sparkle Cocktail Recipe

With its raspberry and mango Champagne cocktail, the French sparkle will bring a burst of color and zest to any celebration. This is ideal for occasions that require a great deal of attention. This recipe, developed by Chambord to promote their Chambord-flavored vodka, is both exotic and easy to make. Even with its sophisticated sparkle, it’s one of the most easy to make cocktails. It was a brilliantly flavored vodka released in 2012 with the unmistakable flavor of black raspberries – the same flavor found in the famous liqueur.

It is unfortunately no longer in production, but you might still be able to find some in certain liquor stores. It is still possible to enjoy the French sparkle, though. In most cases, it simply requires an adaptation and there are a few options. If you want to use another raspberry-flavored vodka, that is the easiest way Absolut, New Amsterdam, Smirnoff, and Svedka are some of the brands which offer the flavor of gin. This refreshing cocktails pairs beautifully with mango nectar and sparkling wine for a fruity cocktail that you’ll be sure to enjoy with your guests.


Vegan Raspberry Champagne Gelée

This gelée is a fun variation of the classic dessert, oftentimes made with gelatin. Since gelatin is derived from animal collagen, it isn't a vegan friendly or even vegetarian friendly ingredient however, agar is a wonderful replacement for gelatin (as culinary experts in Asia have known for a very long time) and is simple to prepare. Seek out agar (often labeled "Agar Agar") at Asian markets or in the Asian sections of many chain grocery stores. If you find agar powder, be sure to refer to the package for how much powder you will need in place of 4 tablespoons flakes, as powder is more concentrated and therefore less is required to make a proper gelée. In general, about 1 1/2 tablespoons powder should work in place of 4 tablespoons flakes.

The key to getting agar to set correctly is to make sure that it comes to a complete boil and that all of the agar has thoroughly dissolved into the water. After that, it should set up quickly and easily!

Feel free to use any type of light colored wine you desire for this. Prosecco is an economical choice and provides a similar sweetness as using Champagne. This also works well using other types of berries, such as blueberries, cut strawberries, or blackberries.


Gelatin

Gelatin has been around for centuries. In fact, in ancient times gelatin was used for glue since it sets and can be formed into molds. Back then it was made from extracting gelatinous animal bone matter. It is odorless, colorless, and conforms to any shape you want. It was adapted over the years, and was first published for cooking in the 18th century by Hannah Glass in her book,The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy: The Revolutionary 1805 Classic. She used a layer of jelly in a trifle. Then, in the 19th century, two bestselling cookbook authors also gave gelatin dessert recipes. Gelatin desserts have come a long way since then! They have evolved and become elevated, yet remain so simple to make. Gelatin can be used in mousse cake fillings, mirror glaze cakes, and cakes like, Strawberries & Cream Layer Cake.

For a full history lesson on Gelatin, check this link out, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelatin.

The first step in your Champagne Gelee wil be to set your gelatin. You will put about 1/2 of a cup of champagne into a small bowl and then sprinkle on your gelatin. Let it sit for about five minutes.


Recipe: Champagne Gelée

Valerie Gordon opened Valerie Confections in South Silverlake with her partner Stan Weightman Jr. back in 2004. The couple also recently opened Valerie Grand Central Market and Valerie Echo Park. And now Valerie can add a cookbook to her list of accolades. This recipe for Champagne Gelée comes from Sweet, her new cookbook that celebrates dessert and confections.

If you aren’t lucky enough to have gold-rimmed Dorothy Thorpe glasses and a gold spoon like the ones in the photo, Valerie suggests serving it in a similar see-through vessel so you can capture the beautiful champagne color. While it can be made ahead, you want to take it out of the fridge right before you serve it as the structure of the dessert will begin to wilt at room temperature.

An interview with Valerie Gordon about her book will air on this week’s Good Food.

Gelée sounds so much more sophisticated and elegant than the word “gelatin.” We all grew up with the packaged variety in those electric colors with flavors like orange and lime. Dispel that notion of gelatin this version is far more delicious and impressive. Use your favorite Champagne or sparkling wine.

1 tablespoon plus 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin

3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons (7.5 ounces) cold water

1 bottle (750 ml) Champagne, chilled

1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the 3 tablespoons water in a small bowl, and let sit for 10 minutes, until the gelatin softens.

2. Combine the remaining 3/4 cup water and the sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat.

3. Add the gelatin to the sugar syrup, stirring until it has dissolved. Pour into a large pitcher. Pour the Champagne into the pitcher and stir with a long spoon.

4. Pour the gelée into glasses or small glass bowls and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours, until set.

The gelée can be refrigerated, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 3 days.

TIP: Adding strawberries, sliced if large, and raspberries, is a delicious way to vary this recipe. Add the berries to the glasses before refrigerating the gelée. If you add berries, it is best to serve the gelées the day they are made, as the berries can darken and break down, and the effect will not be as pretty.

Excerpted from Sweet by Valerie Gordon (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2013. Photographs by Peden + Munk.

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Birth of a Dream Cake

I truly admire people who are able to come up with their own original recipes. I love and enjoy experimenting in the kitchen, be it baking or cooking. I’ve adjusted known recipes to fit my taste and I can even say I improved some (at least I think so :)), but I’ve never created my very own recipe.

Last week, after a quite long pause, I started going to pastel painting class again. I forgot how this class does wonders to my emotional wellness, inspiration, and just overall feeling of joy! As I was doodling on a note pad thinking of what could be my next painting project, I found myself sketching a cake… Weird how my mind switched from thinking of painting to thinking of a cake and my hand followed accordingly.

In the back of my mind I had plans to make a cake this weekend – a cake for my birthday. I could have let my family buy me a cake, but as every other year I am totally almost expected to make a cake for each family member’s birthday. Honestly, I like it that way! Still sketching, an idea of my very own cake came to mind… Raspberries came to mind, vanilla, white chocolate, mmm… why not?! Here it is! From the birth of an idea to the final product – Raspberry Dream Cake!

Raspberry Dream Cake Printable recipe

  • 6 eggs
  • 4 tbsp hot water
  • 3/4 cups (150 g) sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp bitter almond extract
  • 5 oz (150 g) sour cream* ( I added sour cream to the batter for additional moisture and to avoid cake being dry)
  • 1 1/4 cup (150 g) flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 5 oz (150) g ground hazelnuts

Frosting # 1 – Semolina, butter, white chocolate frosting:

  • 1 cup (250 ml) milk
  • 1 cup (250 ml) cream
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3.5 oz (100 g) semolina
  • 1 stick (100 g) butter
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
  • 3.5 (100 g) white chocolate

Frosting # 2 – Raspberry Gelée:

  • 14 oz (400 g) frozen raspberries
  • 6 oz (170 g) fresh raspberries
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 ml) water
  • 2 envelopes (14 g) plain gelatin
  • 6 tbsp water
  • 7 oz (200 g) white chocolate
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cup (300 ml) heavy cream (whipped)
  • Sugar
  • Fresh raspberries
  • Lemon Balm leaves

Also needed: 7 inch (18 cm) spring form cake pan, parchment paper, plastic wrap, a long sharp knife, cake decorating bag with a star tip


Champagne gelées for an elegant New Year

To make Champagne gelée for New Year's Eve, dissolve unflavored gelatin, combine it with sugar syrup, and then stir in sparkling wine. After 3 or 4 hours in the refrigerator the gelée is ready to eat. (Dec. 8, 2013) Credit: Peden + Munk

I'm in the thick of Christmas baking now, producing tins of cookies for teachers, making and freezing components of a buche de noel, placing finishing touches on my gingerbread house. When the crumbs are cleared, will I really feel like starting all over for New Year's?

Probably not. Yet, it's unthinkable to end the year's biggest party without a special dessert. That's where Valerie Gordon comes in. The owner of Valerie Confections in Los Angeles and author of a beautiful new book, "Sweet" (Artisan, $35) understands. The book is packed with memorable treats for every occasion. "Desserts," she says, "define celebrations. They're the things we remember about holidays." For those of us with butter fatigue and baking burnout as New Year's Eve approaches, she suggests Champagne gelée, a dessert that is "low in calories, fat-free, and a wonderful punctuation mark at the end of a really rich dinner." It gets better. The recipe is ridiculously easy, or, as Gordon says, "four steps to fancy."

Champagne is a happy beverage. "You don't open a bottle when something really horrible is happening," notes Gordon. "You have a big cup of whiskey on that day." Champagne is for celebrating, especially on New Year's Eve. "Using Champagne in a dessert just magnifies the happiness." Thickened with unflavored gelatin, the gelée has the same flavor and beautiful color as Champagne. And yet it is a food instead of a beverage.

If you've never used unflavored gelatin, don't worry. It's easy. Look for it on the shelf next to the Jell-O at the supermarket. Making Champagne gelée is not much different from making a batch of Jell-O. Sprinkle the gelatin over a small bowl of cold water and let it stand until the gelatin dissolves. Then, mix it with hot sugar syrup and a bottle of chilled Champagne. Stir it gently to preserve as many bubbles as possible. For easy portioning, use a pitcher to pour the mixture into dessert goblets before refrigerating until set.

Save the vintage Dom Pérignon for drinking, but make sure, since you're really going to taste it, that the Champagne you use has a nice, rounded flavor. Avoid the really cheap stuff, which will become acidic when mixed with sugar. Gordon recommends Taittinger, a tasty and modestly priced brand. Or ask your wine merchant for a recommendation. A good quality Spanish cava or California sparkling wine, though not technically Champagne, will work just as well.

Pretty goblets or cut-glass bowls will help your Champagne gelée sparkle. "Aesthetically, the simplest things are sometimes the most elegant," Gordon says. For extra visual impact, add raspberries to the gelée before it sets. Or set out a tray of chocolate-covered strawberries, chocolate truffles or small shortbread cookies as an accompaniment.

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CHAMPAGNE GELÉE (excerpted from "Sweet")

Adding strawberries, sliced if large, and raspberries, is a delicious way to vary this recipe. Add the berries to the glasses before refrigerating the gelée. If you add berries, it is best to serve the gelées the day they are made, as the berries can darken and break down, and the effect will not be as pretty.

1 tablespoon plus 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin

3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons cold water, divided

1 bottle (750 ml) Champagne, chilled

1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the 3 tablespoons water in a small bowl and let sit for 10 minutes, until the gelatin softens.

2. Combine the remaining 3/4 cup water and the sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat.

3. Add the gelatin to the sugar syrup, stirring until it has dissolved. Pour into a large pitcher. Pour the Champagne into the pitcher and stir with a long spoon.

4. Pour the gelée into glasses or small glass bowls and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours, until set. The gelée can be refrigerated, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 3 days. Makes 6 servings


Ingredients

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Champagne Gelée with Raspberries - Recipes

This low-calorie dessert is the perfect guilt-free ending to a delicious meal. It has all the class and decadence of French cuisine with less than 100 calories.

Did you know?
White grapes contain resveratrol, which is a high potency antioxidant that has been touted as the ultimate protector against heart disease. Try sparkling red grape juice for an extra boost in antioxidants!

Caution:
This recipe can be used with champagne and sparkling wine but due to the increased acidity, you must increase PGX to 7 g and refrigerate longer.

Nutritional Information:
Serving size: 3⁄4 cup
Calories: 87
Fat: 0.5 g
Carbs: 20 g
Protein: 1 g
Fibre: 4 g

Ingredients

1 cup sparkling white grape juice

2/3 cup raspberries and blueberries

Directions

Wisk PGX into the cup of sparkling white grape juice until fully blended.

Stir until mixture begins to congeal (about 5–7 minutes).

Divide mixture evenly into 2 glasses full of berries (1/3 cup of berries per glass).

Allow to set in fridge for at least 2 hours before serving. Serve and enjoy!