Crème Chiboust with Fresh Fruit Salad
Crème Chiboust is the cream used to finish a Gâteau St Honoré. Chiboust was the name of the chef who first put together the St Honoré and the cream to go with it. It is a pastry cream, finished with Italian meringue. In this dessert, it is flavored with lemon, frozen, cut into shapes and caramelized very quickly under a hot broiler and then served with a delicious fresh fruit salad.
For The Lemon Custard:
2/3 cup lemon juice, plus the grated zest of 2 lemons
2/3 cup heavy cream
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
6 egg yolks
1 packet powdered gelatin, dissolved in 3 tablespoons of cold water for 5 minutes
For the Fruit Salad:
Selection of soft fruit, e.g. raspberries, strawberries, peaches, bananas, kiwi fruit, oranges, melon, blackberries and/or blackcurrants, prepared as necessary
2/3 cup Raspberry or Strawberry Syrup.
For the Italian Meringue:
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
6 egg whites
For the Lemon Custard:
Boil together the lemon juice, zest and cream. Mix the sugar, cornstarch and egg yolks together in a bowl and pour in the boiling hot juice and cream mixture, whisking constantly. Return the mixture to the pan and cook on a low heat for 8-10 minutes until thickened (do not allow to boil). Dissolve the gelatin over a gentle heat until clear and add to the thickened lemon custard.
For the Meringue:
Boil together the sugar and water to around 240°F, which takes 2-3 minutes. While the sugar is boiling, whisk the egg whites to firm peaks. Gradually pour a boiled sugar onto the egg whites, whisking all the time; slowly continue to whisk the egg whites until just warm. Fold the meringue into the custard. Line a large baking tray with plastic wrap and spoon in the Chiboust cream (you need it to be about 1 - ½ inches deep). Freeze until firm.
Once frozen, remove and cut into shapes as required. I like to serve these cut in rectangles 3 ½ - 4 inches x 2 inches. Re-freeze for 2-3 hours.
Prepare the fruit for the salad. Arrange on serving plates and pour 2-3 tablespoons of syrup over each portion. Glaze the tops of the meringue shapes with a gas gun or under the broiler. Put the shapes on top of the fruit. After a few moments, the meringue will soften. It's now ready to serve.