This month's "They Go Really Well Together" from Khymos and hosted by Tri-2-Cook is Chanterelles and Apricots. Not too exotic, but causing many to abandon the challenge due to the lack of fresh ingredients. But I say - Gafaw! I submit for my fellow TGRWTers: Chanterelle & Roasted Chestnut Daquoise with Apricot Chestnut Oil Pudding and Apricot Chantilly.
I'll pass on the recipes for this round and cut right to the chase...My star taster, and crack employee, John (former long-time resident of France; serious foodie; world traveller; heart surgeon instructor; downright nice guy) absolutely loved it. He said, "I first had the earthy taste from the mushrooms, which was followed with the sweet fruitiness of the apricot, and a lingering finish of the earthiness again." "A real winner!"
With that success, I brought one home to Tyler. After his nose unwrinkled, and he started breathing again, he mildly expressed his dislike. Actually he claimed it was my second worst dessert ever (the first being the infamous rose water incident of 2006). I may have confounded the problem by using that pesky roasted chestnut flour. It is so strong that it taints any food that I put it in, and neither Tyler nor I have really enjoyed it much (the scones with white chocolate being the exception).
Two technical notes worthy of sharing. First, lacking fresh chanterelles, I used organic dried chanterelles. I simply pulverized them and treated them as part of my nut flour going into the daquoise. No adjustments were necessary, and the flavor was strong but not dominant. Second, the pudding was a play on the Alinea olive oil pudding. I essentially used the same recipe, except I added kamerdine syrup, and then used chestnut oil instead of olive oil. I liked it quite a bit. Tyler did not. I'll defer to John's assessment to keep my ego afloat!
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