Chicory Tatin with goat cheese, sweet-sour sauce
A word about Gastrique; If you are not familiar with caramel based sauces, also known as gastriques, then this is a fun dish to do since you get to do it twice and if you're like me you love the chemistry of cooking! Caramels can be made a few ways, the most common is with sugar and water (a wet caramel) where you use 30% water to your amount of sugar (ie. 100g sugar to 30ml water) this is easier and doesn't burn as fast. Or you can do a dry caramel using just sugar. This is a strange one but sometimes its just better. The sugar in your pot will take its time melting but once it does it melts fast. I cannot say this enough DO NOT STIR CARAMEL…EVER…JUST DON'T…STOP WHERE YOU ARE…got it? You will be tempted, you will really really want to stick a spoon in there, don't! If you have to, remove all the spoons from the kitchen. If you stir a caramel it will burn and break which is annoying and hard to clean. Instead you can tilt and gently swirl the pot, that's really all the help your caramel needs, its happy to do the work! :D
Gastrique is fun, because the addition of cooler vinegar to hot caramel, has a loud and fast reaction. The caramel with instantly solidify and bubble, but just stay calm, sip your wine, swirl your pan and look cool while your guests panic, its fun! Eventually it will melt back down to drizzlin' consistency.
6 pcs medium-sized Belgium endives
3 pcs goat cheese
Shallots, finely chopped
=Sweet and Sour Juice=
Endive cooking liquid
5 brs chives
200g puff pastry
- Preheat oven to 350. Trim the endive, clean the leaves. Half and remove some (not all) of the core. Water, butter, lemon and sugar to a pan. Add endives, cover with parchment and cook until tender.
- Sweat shallots and garlic, once cooked set aside. For the juice; sugar to a pot for a dry caramel, deglaze with the vinegar. (this will be shocking if you've never made a gastrique before. Don't panic! It will make noise, solidify, bubble. But eventually it will melt down again. DO NOT STIR CARAMEL!) add a touch of the endive liquid and some soy if you like. Drain the endives, dry them.
- Butter some ramakins thoroughly. Line the ramakins with the endive leaves, bottom and sides. Place in some goats cheese, shallots and a spoonful of the juice, sprinkle in some diced chives. Fold the endives over the mix. Cut circles of the puff pastry the size of the ramakins and place one on top of each, tucking it down the insides a bit. Into the oven until the pastry is cooked.
- The gastrique sauce can be made with cider vinegar or balsamic, it just comes down to taste, cider will be more fruity and tart where as balsamic with be woodier and more full bodied. Make a wet caramel with the sugar and water allotted for the Caramel. Deglaze with which ever vinegar you choose, and reduce SLIGHTLY.
- When the pastry is finished, you can turn the tatins out on to your plates and serve drizzled with your gastrique.
It doesn't look like much but when you crack that baby open, be prepared to ignore your dinner guests for the next 15 minutes! Yum!