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Sweet nightingale persimmons with navel orange bavarois à la Mary Ellen

You'll need

4 nightingale persimmons 80 ml vodka 110 gm (½ cup) caster sugar   Navel orange bavarois à la Mary Ellen 200 ml organic milk 125 gm caster sugar 4 egg yolks 1 gelatine leaf (titanium strength), softened in cold water for 5 minutes 60 ml (¼ cup) strained navel orange juice, 30ml pulp reserved 250 ml (1 cup) organic cream, whisked to soft peaks


  • 01
  • For navel orange bavarois à la Mary Ellen, warm milk and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves (1-2 minutes). Lightly whisk yolks in a heatproof bowl, then slowly whisk milk into yolks, return to saucepan and stir continuously over low-medium heat until mixture thickly coats the back of spoon (8-10 minutes). Transfer to an electric mixer, squeeze moisture out of gelatine, add to milk mixture, stir to dissolve, then beat mixture until cold (20-25 minutes). Add orange juice and reserved pulp, fold in cream and pour mixture into a 1 litre-capacity bowl and refrigerate until set (3-4 hours).
  • 02
  • Cut persimmons in half. Place vodka in a shallow bowl and caster sugar on a plate. Dip persimmons cut-side down into vodka and press into sugar. Caramelise tops with a blowtorch until sugar browns and just starts to smoke (20-30 seconds). Dust with another layer of sugar and repeat (you don’t want to cook the persimmon – just caramelise the sugar). Serve with a quenelle of bavarois.

Nightingale persimmons are a delicate treat. The caramelised tops are best achieved with the aid of a blowtorch so that the persimmon remains uncooked. The bavarois is a slight deviation from Stephanie Alexander's recipe.

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people

Drink Suggestion

Young Rutherglen tokay.

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