This is my first cooking challenge which I have taken up. And trust me it’s really a challenge. In this #TheMindSpinner challenge we are given 6 main ingredients and 3 common ingredients. Out of the main 6 ingredients we are suppose to choose any 3 and use the combination of these 3 main ingredients along with 3 common ingredients to prepare a main dish and a dessert.. Yes you heard it right the ingredients for the dessert and main course dish needs to be identical.. PHEW… I had to be very mindful while selecting these ingredients. The options were as follow
Main 6 Ingredients:
- Dark Chocolate
- Sour Cream
- Chilli (Any)
Common 3 Ingredients:
- Brown Sugar
Imagine using potatoes / spinach or mushrooms in our dessert, so the name was actually in action mind spinning.. After lot of scribbling, research and thinking I zero down to Strawberry / Sour Cream and Chilli as my main ingredients.
The sponsors had asked to create a Gourmet, according to my understanding Gourmet dishes can’t be simple or one pot meal. They need to be made and assembled and needs to be something out of the box. And especially with these ingredients the box was also small.. lol. In this dish also I have some techniques which needed some precision and patience to get the right end product especially turning a boiled potato to a pancake and not breaking it.
Trust me when I started I was not sure how my dish would look or taste, but as I kept going and changing things according to the dish requirement I was very pleased the way my dishes started to shape up and Bonus when my family loved the taste. I won’t be hesitant to say initially they were little reluctant to even taste it due to ingredients used.. My husband said – “ They look awesome, but I am not sure how will it taste knowing you have used strawberries in main course and potatoes in dessert” But after tasting he was surprised that well it hardly tasted the way it was suppose to.
It was a challenge to make sure the potatoes get a shape of pancake, they are not too thick so they taste dense at some point, they need to be cooked through and evenly and very important they don’t break and crumble.. This step needs lots of patience and concentration.. Luckily for me first try was spot on.
I am so very happy the way my dishes turned out. This dish is combination of lot’s of flavours and textures.The sizzler plates needs to be hot enough for everything to sizzle out.
Here presenting my Gourmet dish for the Challenge.. With Pride and Happiness
Sour cream and brown sugar to make ice-cream
Beat them well to make it fluffy and creamier..The sour cream should be beaten properly to get fluffy and creamier and no sugar granules should be present. It should be cold enough to scoop out and hold the shape.
Mix the strawberries and brown sugar
Stir them in between and rotate the tray after 15 minutes
Brittles are ready after 25 minutes..And the brittles would give an different texture of crunch which is a surprise and delight to the taste buds..
Place the boiled potato in the sandwich press using a baking sheet for lining
Pressing it firmly down..
Once the pancake is ready cook it in a pan to get firmer
Pancake ready to be served.. For the pancake it’s very important that the potatoes are firm from outside but cooked and soft from in, while serving – the pancake should be at room temperature and not hot.
For the strawberry sauce, it needs to be cooked to get caramelised and gain the dense texture. As sugar and strawberry along made it very sweet and sour, the pinch of salt helped to cut the sourness and paprika to give edge to the sweetness leaving the sauce to be dense, tangy and gooey but still sweet :)..
Assembling the dish
Potato & Strawberry Sizzler
For Potato Pancake:
- 1 large Potato
- 1 tsp olive oil
For Sour Cream Ice-cream:
- 3 tbsp Sour cream
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
For Strawberry Sauce:
- 1 cup Strawberry
- ¼ cup brown Sugar
- 1 tsp Paprika
- ½ cup Water
- ¼ tsp Salt
For Strawberry Brittles:
- ½ cup Strawberries
- ¼ cup brown Sugar
Preparing the ice-cream:
- Take sour cream and sugar in a bowl and using an electric beater mix it on medium for about 3 – 4 minutes till you find that the sugar and cream is well blended and the cream becomes fluffy and creamier.
- Place the bowl in the freezer for it to chill. The cream won’t freeze but will become chilled and easier to scoop and form round ball shape.
Preparing the pancake:
- Boil the potato; make sure the potato is boiled well but not crumbling. It is very important to have a firm and cooked potato.
- I have used red potato and boiled it in microwave for about 20 minutes checking in between. Once done peel the potato and keep it aside.
- Using a sandwich press, I used the one with grids on both side to give a nice effect, but you can use plain ones or even a waffle maker to make these pancakes.
- Heat the sandwich press properly and then keep baking sheet and place the potato between them. This step will ensure your potato does not stick to the sandwich press and break.
- Now place the potato on the end far from you, and start to close the press. It would be hard to press down but try pressing little at a time.
- Please do not try to close the press at once or everything will crumble and fall apart. Use a towel if needed put little pressure from top. Keep pressing gentle and slowly at a time.
- After some time check, you will notice the portion behind would be flatter than the one in front, change the position and place the thicker side behind.
- Try to press again and this time a little more firmer. In between you may find that some part have cracked, but don’t worry or don’t touch it. Keep changing the position to cook the potatoes from all side and get it flat.
- You will reach a stage where the press would close completely. Do that and press firm, doing this will join the pancake’s cracks and make it in a whole.
- Meanwhile in a pan heat some olive oil, once the oil is hot remove the potato from the sandwich press, still in the baking paper and using the paper to flip the potato over on the pan. Cook the potato from both sides pressing it lightly for about 2 minutes each side. Remove and place it over on towelling paper for access oil to be absorbed, if needed dab both sides. This step will help to ensure that potatoes have cooked properly overall and still is soft.
Preparing the sauce:
- In a pan put strawberries; washed and hulled and cut in two, along with brown sugar, salt, paprika and water.
- On medium flame let the sauce boil, once the sauce boils using back of your spoon start mashing the strawberries as much as you can and let the sauce simmer till it’s thick and dark in colour.
Preparing the brittles:
- Pre heat oven on 200°C, meanwhile wash and hull the strawberries and slit them in two.
- In a mixing bowl add the halved strawberries and brown sugar and mix them well.
- Line a baking tray with foil and spray with olive oil and then spread the strawberries on the tray.
- Make sure they do not overlap and bake them for 25 minutes, in between mixing them and rotating the tray.
- After 25 minutes you will find that the strawberries would have formed very brittle and hard. Let it cool down completely.
- Then start breaking the brittles, your whole house would be full of the roasted strawberries aroma.
- Once you have broken them in pieces carefully trying not to damage the whole strawberries.
- Using a sizzler plate, heat the plate in the oven or on that gas stove. Make sure the sizzler plate is very hot.
- Then place the pancake on it and scoop the sour cream and place it over it.
- I even slit a strawberry and placed it on top of the ice-cream.
- Then pour the strawberry sauce on it, as you start to pour the sauce the plate will start sizzling.
- Top it with some brittles for crunchy taste and serve immediately…