These cherry treats are my late continuing celebrations of the cherries. I caught myself in a complete obsession with cherries this summer - in my attempt to keep them for longer, I rushed into preserving and tasting.
The following recipe is my cherry version of the recipe (slightly modified) of William Curley - a chocolatier I admire enormously.
400g of tempered dark chocolate - 70% will be needed.
I use dark chocolate, which combines well with the high sweetness of the jam and the marshmallow. The bitterness of the chocolate makes these teacakes just irresistible. After, all everything is about chocolate ...
For the cherry purée:
50 ml water
50 g sugar
500 g cherries - pitted
10 ml lemon juice
Bring the water and the sugar to a boil. Process the cherries in a blender. Add the syrup and the lemon juice. Blitz to a smooth purée and pass through a sieve. Keep in the refrigerator until needed.
For the cherry jam:
250 g cherries, pitted
250 g cherry purée
200 g sugar
15 ml lemon juice
Cook the cherry purée and sugar over high heat for 5 min. Lower the temperature and continue cooking until the syrup becomes thicker and the jam reaches to its setting point - a drop from the syrup, dropped in a cold plate will keep a cylindric shape. Cooking time depends on the consistency of the purée - about 15-20 min. Turn off the heat. Add the lemon juice as soon as the jam is set, keeping it over the heat. Stir and leave until needed.
For the tea biscuits:
175 g unsalted butter, cut in cubes
250 g flour
90 g powdered sugar
pinch of salt
40 g egg yolks
In a large bowl with fingertips, crumb the butter and the flour together. Add the sugar and salt. Mix in the eggs, forming a dough. Form a ball, wrap in a plastic foil and refrigerate for one hour.
Roll out the chilled dough in 4 mm thick. With a round cutter 5 cm in diameter, cut out about 25 circles, place them in a lined with parchment paper baking pan and bake at 180C for about 15 min until golden. Transfer the biscuits on a wire rack to cool.
For the marshmallow:
9 g gelatine powder
100 g cherry purée
50 g egg whites (use the whites from the eggs which yolks were used for the biscuits)
225 g caster sugar
55 ml water
40 g liquid glucose or corn syrup
"Bloom" the gelatine in 18 ml cold water. Bring the purée to a boil. Remove from heat and add the gelatine. Stir until dissolves completely. In a bowl of a mixer, aerate the whites at slow speed with a whisk attachment. Cook the sugar, water and glucose in a heavy bottomed pan, cooking until the syrup reaches 121C, or for about 3-4 min. Carefully pour the syrup over the whites, whisking them continuously. Continue mixing at high speed for about 3-4 min. Add the warm cherry purée and whisk until the meringue reaches room temperature.
Distribute the tea biscuits on a lined with parchment paper sheet pan, having enough space between them to work freely. I used only the whole cherries from the cherry jam. If you made cherry jam from small sized cherries, or if you'd like to have more jam on the finished treats, spoon the jam in the centre of each biscuit. I centred a whole jammed cherry over each sweet pastry. Have a pastry bag fitted with a 15 mm round tip. Fill it with the marshmallow. Pipe a generous bulb on top of the jam. Leave them to set for two hours in a cool and dry place.
Meanwhile, just before finishing, temper about 400 g dark chocolate - 70% cacao over bain marie. * Transfer in a wide teacup, large enough to accommodate a teacake. Using a dipping fork, dip the set cakes into the chocolate biscuit side down, cover them fully. Drain the excessive chocolate over the edge of the cup and leave on a parchment paper lined pan to set.
After every cake has been "couvertured", store them in a cool and dry area. DO NOT REFRIGERATE! 23-24C and 60% humidity is just fine for achieving a nice and authentic chocolate mat finish on every chocolate product.