Sometimes I think I am in over my head asking chefs for their recipes. Last week I had a dream that I asked Gordon Ramsay for his Caesar Salad recipe and he screamed at me. He said there was no way he was going to give it to me and I should just wait for the release of his next book where I could find it! I swear, I woke up in a sweat and my heart racing.
Howard from Eat Show and Tell and another friend had Dared Me to get Sepia‘s famous Mango and Vanilla Weiss Bar and so I approached the restaurant for the recipe. I made contact with Vicki Wild not only who manages the front of house but is also partner to Head Chef, Martin Benn. I thought, if anyone could charm Chef Benn into parting with such a coveted recipe, it would be her. And luckily, Vicki Wild is much more charming and accommodating than Gordon Ramsay.
Sepia is a two hat restaurant in Sydney run by Martin Benn, Vicki and George Costi of De Costi Seafood. Martin also has the distinction of winning the prestigious Chef of The Year for 2011 from the Good Food Guide Awards. It’s also worth noting that Martin was also once head chef at Tetsuya Restaurant. So you can imagine, that the calibre of desserts that they serve is enough to make someone like me panic at the thought of recreating one of them.
There are no less than six components to this dessert and the recipe also calls for the use of fancy gadgets like a thermomix and a pacojet. But luckily, a food processor and ice cream maker will do just fine. I have written down the recipe as it was originally given to me but have put in bold font when I have changed something to suit the equipment I have. I have also halved the recipe and used individual cylindrical stainless steel molds.
Would it be too melodramatic if I told you it looked and tasted like summer? A refreshing sorbet paired with an unbelievably creamy vanilla ice cream a top a macadamia sable and finally topped with poached pineapples and lime air – it is indeed a beautiful dessert. Lovely to look at and even better to devour!
Thank you very much to Vicki Wild and Martin Benn for providing me with the recipe.
Chef Martin Benn – Sepia
Mango and Vanilla Weiss Bar
For the Mango Sorbet:
1000g Mango Puree (I used Boiron Fruit Puree)
200g Sugar Syrup
1-2 Lemons, juiced (to taste)
Combine all the ingredients together and then pour into a Paco jet container.
Freeze for 24 hours and then process in the Paco Jet.
Leave in the freezer until required.
For the syrup, mix equal quantities sugar and water (100 grams sugar and 100 grams water and bring to a boil to dissolve sugar, remove from heat and cool). To make the sorbet I combined the above ingredients, poured over an ice cube tray, and froze. Then I used the thermomix to create the sorbet (20 seconds on speed 10, use the spatula to assist).
For the Vanilla Ice-Cream:
2 L Milk
2 Vanilla Beans scrapped
1200g Cream @35%
Make the ice cream base as you would a normal Analgise.
Bring the milk, first 400g of sugar and vanilla to the boil.
In the meantime cream together the remaining amount of sugar and egg yolks.
Slowly add in the boiled milk and whisk to combine.
Bring the egg mixture to 80c to cook out, allow the mixture to cool over an ice bath.
Once cold add in the cream and then pour the custard into Paco containers and freeze for 24 hours. (Once cold, churn the ice cream as per your ice cream maker’s instructions)
Process in the Paco jet and then return to the freezer until ready for use.
For the Macadamia Sable:
44g Macadamia Nuts, toasted
76g Plain Flour
36g Icing Sugar
44g Butter, cold, diced
30g Olive Oil
Blend macadamia nuts in Thermo mix until quite fine. (You can use a food processor)
Combine flour, sugar and butter and mix until a sandy consistency.
Spread the macadamia crumb out on a tray.
Bake @160’C until golden brown.
Remove from the oven and allow the crumb to cool.
Blend in the Thermo mix with the olive oil until it comes together.
To Make the Weiss Bars:
Spread out the sable mix into 30 x 20cm lined trays about 5mm thick and freeze.
Once frozen add in a layer of the vanilla ice cream and freeze again.
Follow this with a layer of the mango sorbet and freeze again.
Once well frozen turn out the Weiss and cut into 5cm x 20cm bars.
Place back in the freezer until required.
For the Lime Air:
400ml Sugar Syrup @100%
200ml Lime Juice
50ml Yuzu Juice
Mix all the ingredients in a cylinder and then blend with a hand blender to foam the bubbles.
6 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Citric Acid
½ tsp Bi Carb Soda
Powdered Dried Lemon Zest to taste
150ml Sugar Syrup @ 100%
80ml White Wine
Peel the skin off of the pineapple and cut into ¼ s and remove the core.
Shave the pineapple on a slicer very thinly.
Poach the slices in the syrup and leave to cool until required.
To Finish the Weiss:
Make a line with the sherbet at the base of the plate.
Place a bar of the Weiss in the centre of the plate.
Drain the poached pineapple and place on top of the Weiss.
Using a hand blender, blend the lime foam until light and airy.
Spoon the air on top of the Weiss bar and then finish with Nasturtium Petals.
© COPYRIGHT MARTIN BENN
If you’re looking for a recipe that you really love – then dare me to find it for you. Just drop me an email or a comment at the end of this post and I’ll turn your craving into a fun challenge and get you that coveted recipe!