|Tarragon Sugared Doughnuts and Pink Peppercorn Ice Cream|
I am contrary. If someone tells me to go left, I feel myself veering to the right (this is possibly why I don't drive, and you should all be grateful)*.
So when Lurpak sent me a product from their new Cooks' Range - Lurpak Clarified Butter (or ghee as it's often known) with some tarragon and some pink peppercorns and then suggested I might use them to make a nice steak, my first thought was, "I don't think so".
In fact, I'm contrary enough that I thought I'd make a dessert instead, and as any fule kno, I don't do puds (unless they're as ridiculously easy as the Burmese New Year snack known as mont lone yay paw).
So anyway, I sat staring at the wee tub of ghee and the little baggies of herbs, and I racked my brain and I came up with the following - Tarragon Sugared Doughnuts with Pink Peppercorn Ice Cream.
It occurred to me that tarragon is sweet and fragrant with enough of a bitter aniseed kick that it bears more than a passing resemblance to matcha ie Japanese green tea, which works wonderfully in desserts.
And the pink peppercorns would also provide spice and heat to cut through the richness of the ice cream.
I also decided to bake the doughnuts and then dip them in the melted clarified butter to get that glorious deep-fried sheen and flavour without actually having to deep-fry (thus saving a few calories, I hope).
Tarragon Sugared Doughnuts with Pink Peppercorn Ice Cream (Recipe)
For the ice cream:
- 4 egg yolks
- 100g icing sugar
- 300g cream cheese (I used Philadelphia)
- 2 tbsp condensed milk
- 200ml double cream
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 tbsp pink peppercorns, crushed
For the doughnuts (makes 20-24 small doughnuts)
- 200g plain flour
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 125g clarified butter
- 1 egg
- 175ml whole milk
For the doughnut coating
- 2 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tbsp dried tarragon
- 100g clarified butter
The day before you want to serve this dish, beat all the ingredients for the ice cream together except for the peppercorns in a large bowl. When it's thick and fluffy, stir in the peppercorns.
Pour into a tub with a lid and freeze for at least six hours, preferably overnight (there's no need to whisk or beat this ice cream - you can just leave it in the freezer).
When you're ready to make the doughnuts, sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a large bowl and stir with a wooden spoon to combine.
Add the melted clarified butter, egg, and milk, and beat with a whisk or electric mixture until thick, smooth and creamy.
If using a doughnut maker, preheat for 5 minutes. Spoon a tablespoon of the doughnut batter evenly into each hole of the doughnut maker and close the lid. Leave the doughnuts to cook for 5 minutes or until they're firm but springy and golden brown.
If using an oven, preheat to 160C. Grease the holes of a mini cupcake tray or doughnut hole tray with a little of the clarified butter and then spoon a tablespoon of the doughnut batter evenly into each hole of the tray. Bake the doughnuts for 8 minutes or until they're firm but springy and golden brown.
Meanwhile, melt the butter for the doughnut coating and set to one side in a bowl.
Now grind the tarragon and caster sugar for the coating in a pestle and mortar until it's as fine as you can manage and set to one side.
Carefully remove one of the hot doughnuts from the doughnut maker/tray and dip first in the melted butter so it's completely coated and then roll in the tarragon sugar.
Place on a baking tray and then repeat for the rest of the doughnuts.
When you've made all your tarragon sugar doughnuts, serve immediately whilst they're still warm with scoops of your pink peppercorn ice cream.
Et voilà! I made a pretty pud!
*You'll be pleased to hear that I've been blessed with a child that is just as contrary as I am.
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