This decadent dessert brings together a divine trinity of ingredients that naturally go well with each other.
25g/1oz dark chocolate, blended to a sandy texture
For the cherry sorbet, place the sugar, glucose and water into a pan and heat gently, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer for a further 1-2 minutes, then stir in the cherry purée. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
Transfer the sorbet mixture into an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer the sorbet into a freezer-proof container and place into the freezer to chill before serving.
For the chocolate mousse, break the chocolate into pieces and place into a heatproof bowl set over a pan of just-simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water). Leave until the chocolate has melted, then remove from the heat. Set aside to cool slightly.
Whisk the egg yolks into the melted chocolate until smooth and well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form when the whisk is removed. Slow add the caster sugar, whisking continuously, until the egg whites are glossy and smooth.
Fold the meringue into the chocolate mixture until well combined. Lightly grease four chef’s rings and cover the bases with cling film. Spoon the mousse mixture into the rings and place into the fridge to set.
For the pistachio cream, whisk the cream in a bowl until soft peaks form when the whisk is removed. Fold in the pistachio paste and whisk until stiff peaks form. Chill in the fridge until ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
For the pistachio caramel, place the sugar and water in a pan and place over a medium heat. Leave, without stirring, until the sugar has melted and turns golden-brown. Add the pistachios, stir quickly and immediately pour out onto a silicone baking sheet and set aside to cool and harden.
Once the caramel has hardened, break it up into pieces and place into a food processor. Pulse until the caramel resembles fine breadcrumbs, then pour out onto a silicone baking sheet in an even layer and place into the oven for 8-10 minutes, until melted.
Remove the softened caramel from the oven and cut into small discs using a biscuit cutter. Set aside to cool and harden.
For the cherries, place the kirsch, sugar, vanilla pod and seeds into a pan and bring to a simmer. Add the cherries and gently poach for 4-5 minutes, or until softened slightly. Remove from the heat and set aside.
To serve, loosen the mousse by running a knife around the insides of the rings and carefully turn out onto a serving plate. Place a spoonful of chocolate crumbs onto the plate and place a ball of cherry sorbet on top. Form quenelles of the pistachio cream and place on top of the chocolate mousse. Spoon the poached cherries around the plate and garnish with the pistachio caramel.
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The finalists must create dishes from a selection of kitchen scraps and leftovers.
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