30 September 2010

Madrid Tales 8 - Last Day & Coming Up!!

Beautiful fit out at this smart Madrid chocolate shop.

Large selection of chocolate bars in dozens of flavours.

Hand dipped pralines.

Plenty of selection.

Cacao Sampaka in Madrid.

Packaging is superb and the store neat and tidy.

Large selection of Champagnes, Sherries, Ports and Sauternes for sale.
Probably the best beer in the world?

The general strike in Spain and austerity strikes across Europe gave us an unexpected extra day in Madrid. This gave us the opportunity to visit the Madrid branch of Cacao Sampaka, we visited the Barcelona branch last year and love the brand. The store is fantastic, and has a large selection of chocolate items, alcohols, books and houses a smart cafe. Cacao Sampaka is located at Calle de Orellana, 4 28004 and is well worth a visit. Tomorrow we return to London on business and we will be catching up with talented individuals in the world of cuisine. We will let you know who they are and how it goes in our next post, but for now it is time for a last beer in Spain. What better than the special edition Estrella on which chef Ferran Adria contributed! Saludas Madrid, see you next year!!  

Madrid Tales 7 - Research Completed

Chef Paco Roncero was a great host, allowing us use of his innovation lab at Casino de Madrid.
A highlight was working for two days with expert food scientist Professor Peter Barham.
We learnt a lot about food production with Peter and his knowledge of ingredients was astonishing.
Getting a few last jobs done for the day.

Chef Adam Melonas with Chef Paco Roncero, it was great to work closely with Adam and we hope to do so again soon.

Beautiful dining room at Casino de Madrid.

Well our time is up here in Madrid, we have been working hard on a big research and development project and are very happy with the results. It has been great working with so many inspirational food experts and highlights include, working closely with Adam Melonas, Peter Barham and Quico Sosa. Paco Roncero was a perfect host and we even met chef Joan Roca in the lab last week. We made two trips to Leatherhead Food Research in the UK to discuss new technologies in confectionary and that was inspiring. We are looking forward to returning to Madrid and exploring more of this fantastic city.

22 September 2010

Under Construction!

Just a quick insight into a new dish we are in the process of constructing, it is going to be a lime and vanilla cheesecake creation. We are currently working on components and balance and will reveal all once it has been worked through. Just thought you would like to see the start of a process.

19 September 2010

Madrid Tales 6 - New Cookbook Shop In Madrid

On a day of for us from our project here in Madrid, we managed to track down this new cookbook shop/cookery school. Open for less than a year, A Punto Libreria is situated at Calle Pelayo, 60, 28004, and is a treasure trove of quality cookbooks. Most of them are in Spanish (of course!) but there are English titles available as well, we owned all of them so opted for a classical Spanish pastry book. We were shown round the shop by one of the owners and she allowed us to take a peek downstairs at their small cooking school. Courses range from Sushi making, pastry, wine tasting and cocktail events. If you are ever in Madrid you should book for one of the events/courses or just pop in for a look at the books.

Just an update on proceedings here, we are making progress in our research and positive results have started to present themselves. We still have until 29th September here in Madrid before moving onto London for 5 days. Next week sees the arrival of world renowned food scientist Peter Barham to help in our studies, we are really looking forward to meeting Peter and hearing what he has got to say. We are also returning to Leatherhead Food Research next week for a follow up on this weeks meeting. So lot's still to happen on our travels.

We will of course keep you updated and we are hoping the Melbourne weather will be brightening up nicely for our return on 7th October.

A Punto
Centro Cultural del Gusto
Calle Pelayo, 60
28004 Madrid

17 September 2010

Burch & Purchese Dishes 26 - Banana, Rum, Molasses & Puff Pastry

This is our latest creation which we are still refining and improving all of the time. Banana has been soaking in a vanilla ascorbic syrup (thanks to Adam Melonas for the syrup recipe) for 1 week and then drained and lightly glazed with a rum jelly. It sits on top of a base of caramelised puff pastry in the top photo but for the dish it is along side. The dish comprises of a banana cream and a molasses mousse in between two thin sheets of caramelised puff. A burnt butter micro sponge garnishes and adds contrasting texture and chocolate eyelashes and coffee crumble complete the dish. 

16 September 2010

Madrid Tales 5 - Leatherhead Food Research

During our research and developments of new products here in Madrid we were presented with an opportunity to return to the UK to visit the world renowned food research facility in Leatherhead, Surrey. This was an exciting opportunity and a very informative trip in both this project and future ones. Unfortunately we cannot divulge the reason for our trip and the information gained due to confidentiality agreements, also the camera had it's lens firmly on as photos of the department are forbidden to protect client secrets! We have another trip planed for next week in further developing our new products with modern techniques, we can say that we are looking in the areas of aeration, moisture retention, stability of recipes and other matters. The trip provided us with the opportunity to pop in and say hi to Mum & Dad who live close by in the village of Farncombe, it was a bit surreal just popping in for dinner and then leaving again but it was nice to catch up albeit briefly. Mum & Dad are keen gardeners and the beautiful tomatoes they lovingly grew were a real highlight! Mum kindly allowed us to take photographs of these, but we had to sign a tight contract so please no reproduction!!!

Leatherhead Food Research               http://www.leatherheadfood.com/

Burch & Purchese Latest Creations

We have been working hard on increasing our future product range with the invention of this new creation designed for Spring. We have created a twist on the traditional hazelnut daquoise and replaced the nut with pistachio and have layered it with pistachio mousseline and then a layer of our fresh lemon curd. This has all been topped off with the most silky smooth white chocolate and vanilla mousse. The mousse was made with Heilala vanilla and the whole piece was textured and then sprayed with white chocolate fine spray. A green tea macaroon with green tea clay is the garnish as well as our lemon chocolate eyelashes. We hope you enjoy this piece and we have more to come

13 September 2010

Madrid Tales 4 - Produce & Our New Favourite Pastry Shop

One of the most popular cheeses here - Tetilla, this version is smoked - delicious!

It is found on most restaurant plata de queso - it is called tetilla because it is shaped like a.............

Our new favourite wine - a Crianza called Arzuaga (pronounced 'Arthwayga')
These eggs were found in the local supermarket, free range, fresh and delicious. Each box has a certificate of authentication and less than Aus$5 for a dozen.
We found this stall at a local market, selling only fresh and natural fruit jellies (pate de fruit) with no colours or preservatives.

Everywhere you go! Not complaining!!

Paleta Iberica is the less expensive front leg of the Iberica pig, it requires and extra chew but the flavour is amazing.

Air dried beef - fantastic.

Our new favourite Chocolate/Pastry Shop on Calle Alcala, 5 mins from our hotel.

The shop smelt amazing and had a very high quality selection of entremets, chocolates and viennoiserie.
All of the large gateaux were sold out within an hour but beautiful individual pieces were still available.

All items are baked and prepared on premises by a very talented chef called Ricardo Martinez Velez.

Check them out if you come to Madrid www.moulinchocolat.com

Every flavour of Macaroons that you can think of...and you MUST try the canelle!

It has been a real education looking at all of the local and regional Spanish produce and there is so much quality in shops that don't have international recognition!