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Friday, May 30, 2008

Platinum Chef Challenge 7

It's that time again! This round was hosted by Dani of Make No Little Meals and the 5 ingredients were mint, bok choy, mango, yogurt, and panko.

I knew that I could make one dish that had all five, but I only truly love mint in a dessert, so I broke it up. I ended up making two dishes for this, dinner and dessert! (as well as spurring another fantastic idea!)

First, I made Grilled Shrimp and Crab cakes, with Grilled Bok Choy and a Mango Dipping Sauce. I love crab cakes and this was a different and interesting way to have them! I discovered that I love bok choy, and how have a fridge stocked with it! Grilling it was pretty easy, but I found that the tops (green parts) of the leaves aren't terribly hearty when it comes to the grill. I didn't find that part enjoyable to eat. The mango sauce was originally way to strong on the ginger, so I've paired it down for the posted recipe. Overall, they tasted great!
The dessert was a little harder to create. I started with a mint chocolate chip frozen yogurt recipe that called for spinach. I thought it was cute and gave it a shot...... but ultimately it was too spinach-y for me and I didn't care for it. I tried again without the spinach, but still didn't love it. So it was back to the drawing board. I decided to try and lighten up the Gooey Chocolate Cakes I made with the TWD crew, and found success (almost). I replaced butter with yogurt and achieved a wonderfully dense, moist cake, but there was not enough mint and it was lost in the final product. I increased it in the recipe listed below, but next time I'll probably just use peppermint extract to make sure it is strong enough (but such was off-limits for this challenge).

Grilled Shrimp and Crab Cakes with Grilled Bok Choy and Mango Dipping Sauce

For the Shrimp and Crab Cakes
~8 oz shrimp, peeled, deveined and tails removed; chopped
~8 oz lump crab meat
~1/4 cup plain yogurt
~1/8 cup chopped green onion
~few shakes of hot pepper sauce such as Tabasco
~1 egg
~1 Tbsp fresh chopped cilantro
~1 Tbsp lime juice
~2 tsp soy sauce
~2 tsp grated ginger root
~3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs, plus additional for rolling

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, mixing just until everything is incorporated. Form into patties or small balls (as I did since I wanted to grill them in my cages) and roll in additional panko. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to set. Grill over medium heat for a few minutes on each side.

For Grilled Bok Choy
~about 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
~1 clove garlic, smash or minced/grated
~1 tsp grated ginger
~4 bok choy, sliced in half and rinsed

Add garlic and ginger to evoo, allow to blend for upwards of 30 min to an hour. Brush cut sides of bok choy with the blended evoo. Place cut side down on grill over medium low heat for a few minutes (they don't need much).

For the Mango Dipping Sauce
~2 mangos, skin and seed discarded
~1 clove garlic, minced or grated
~1 tbsp grated ginger
~juice from 1/2 an orange
~juice from 1 lime
~2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
~1 Tbsp sesame seed oil
~1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
~1 Tbsp fresh cilantro
~Lime zest for garnish

Combine all ingredients except garnish in a blender or food processor, pulse to combine. Pour into dipping bowl and garnish with lime zest.

Lighter Gooey Chocolate Cakes
Adapted from Dorie Greenspan, Baking, From My Home to Yours

~1/3 cup AP flour
~3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
~1/4 tsp salt
~4 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips, or chopped bar of chocolate
~1/2 cup drained plain yogurt (place about 1 cup yogurt in cheesecloth or coffee filter in a strainer, set over a bowl and refrigerate for several hours)
~1/4 cup heavy cream
~1 Tbsp fresh mint leaves
~2 large eggs
~1 large egg yolk
~1/2 cup sugar

Getting ready:
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter (or spray – it’s easier) 6 cups of a regular-size muffin pan, preferably a disposable aluminum foil pan, dust the insides with flour and tap out the excess. (I use 3 - 7 ounce ramekins sprayed with baking spray). Put the muffin pan on a baking sheet.

Sift the flour, cocoa and salt together. Steep the cream and mint leaves together for a few minutes, being careful not to scalb/boil the cream. Combine with yogurt in a small processor or blend and pulse to combine. Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, put the chopped chocolate and the yogurt mixture in the bowl and stir occasionally over the simmering water just until they are melted. Remove the bowl from the pan of water.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and yolk until homogenous. Add the sugar and whisk until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the dry ingredients and, still using the whisk, stir (don’t beat) them into the eggs. Little by little, and using a light hand, stir in the melted chocolate and yogurt. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups (or ramekins). Bake the cakes for 13 minutes. (18 minutes for the ramekins)

Transfer them, still on the baking sheet, to a rack to cool for 3 minutes. (There is no way to test that these cakes are properly baked, because the inside remains liquid.) Line a cutting board with a silicone baking mat or parchment or wax paper, and, after the 3-minute rest, unmold the cakes onto the board. Use a wide metal spatula to lift the cakes onto dessert plates.

I then poured a little leftover warmed chocolate ganache over the top, and garnished with some mint whipped cream.


Anonymous said...

GENIUS idea doing the crab cakes in the grill basket. This looks fantastic and, in true tpox form, that dessert is TO DIE FOR! YUM!

Anonymous said...

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Danielle said...

Amazing dishes--thanks for participating and sorry for the delay. I look forward to you hosting the event this time around! Congrats! :)