DeconDish

How to Make a Bloody Good Chocolate Cake With Pastry Chef Kursten Restivo

DeconDish


This recipe comes from our Deconstructing the Dish story in the September/October 2017 issue. For content like this, subscribe to the magazine

Recipe by Kursten Restivo, head pastry chef of the Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa. Photography by Aaron BristolVideo by David Shuff.

For the chocolate layer cake

  • 1 ½ cups + 3 tbsp cake flour
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp black cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 1 ½ cups mayonnaise
  • 3 Eeggs
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups hot coffee

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 8-inch cake pans and cut out two 8-inch parchment rounds to place on the bottom of each pan. Sift cake flour, all purpose flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together mayo, eggs and vanilla. Add wet ingredient into dry and whisk until combined; mixture will be thick. Fold in hot coffee just until combined. Separate mix evenly (about 4 cups per cake pan) between two 8 inch cake pans. Bake for about 45 minutes or until cake springs back when touched or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.

Strawberry Curd

  • 4 cups strawberry puree, strained
  • ½ cups sugar
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter

Whisk together sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan till lumps are gone, add in strawberry puree, and cook untill the puree/sugar mix comes to a simmer. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs and egg yolks. Add a little of the hot strawberry liquid to the egg mixture then add the egg mixture back into the pot. Cook, stirring constantly until the curd has thickened. Remove from heat, strain over butter and stir until butter is melted and curd is completely combined. Pour into a bowl, cover directly with plastic wrap and let chill in refrigerator until set and completely cool, about 2-3 hours, or overnight. This can be made the day before.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  • 8 large egg whites
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 pinches salt
  • 5 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into small chunks
  • Black gel food coloring, as needed

Combine whites, sugar, vanilla and salt in a bowl over a double boiler. Whisk until mixture is hot to the touch (175 degrees F) and the sugar has dissolved completely. Pour mixture into bowl of stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk at high speed until mix has cooled completely and a nice shiny, stiff meringue has formed. Add in butter in little pieces at a time and mix until all butter has been incorporated and the mix has come together. The buttercream may separate but if you keep mixing, it will come back together.

White Chocolate Ganache

  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 5 oz white chocolate, chopped
  • Red gel food coloring, as needed
  • Brown gel food coloring, as needed

Combine heavy cream and chocolate in microwave safe bowl. Heat in 30 second increments until chocolate has fully melted and the mixture is combined. Add in colors until a nice “blood red” color has been reached. Can be made ahead of time and reheated/melted when ready to use.

Chocolate Spiderweb

  • Black candy melts, as needed

Grey Chocolate Blood Splatter Shards

  • White chocolate candy melts, as needed
  • Black chocolate candy melts, as needed
  • Red gel food coloring, as needed
  • Vodka or clear vanilla extract, as needed

Melt white and black candy melts together to create your desired grey color. Once melted, spread onto a piece of parchment paper until it’s nice and thin but still able to hold shape once set. Once it sets, flip it over onto another piece of parchment paper and peel off the original piece so you now have the flat side facing up. Mix the vodka or extract with the red food color to create almost like a paint. Wear gloves (highly recommended) and dip your fingers in the paint. Flick your fingers onto the white chocolate to create “blood splatter.” That’s the fun part! Let dry. Once dry break into random sized shards to be used to decorate the cake.

“Dirt”

  • Oreo Crumbs, as needed

VIDEO

Cake Assembly

  1. Take your cooled chocolate cakes and cut off the tops so you now have a level surface. Cut the two cakes in half evenly so you have four layers of cake total.
  2. Separate your buttercream into two bowls. Color one bowl of buttercream black, and color the other one a medium gray color. Put the black buttercream into a plastic piping bag and start to build your cake.
  3. Make a border around the bottom layer of cake with the black buttercream. Place about 1 ¼ cups of strawberry filling into the center of the border and spread evenly.
  4. Continue with each layer until you have reached the top layer, so once the cake is built you should have four layers of cake, and three layers of filling. Place in refrigerator to set, about 30 minutes.
  5. Fill up another piping bag with the gray buttercream and refill your bag with more black buttercream.
  6. Once cake is set, remove from cooler and pipe the black food coloring around the outside bottom of the cake until about the middle of the cake. Then pipe the gray buttercream around the top portion of the cake. Take an offset spatula or bench scraper and smooth out the sides of the cake until the sides of the cake are completely smooth and the top is level. You are going for an “ombre” look, where the dark cream gradually blends into the lighter buttercream. Place cake in the freezer while you prepare the ganache.
  7. Prepare ganache (see above recipe). Once made, take out cake, place ganache in a piping bag, cut a very small hole and pipe around the edge of the cake so the ganache “drips” down the side. Once you have gone around the entire cake, fill in the top with the remaining ganache. Put in refrigerator to set. While you wait, melt the black candy melts. Once melted take out the cake, place the candy melts in a piping bag or a parchment piping bag and pipe a spiderweb design on the top.
  8. Once the spider web design has been piped, place your blood splatter shards on the cake as desired. Sprinkle Oreo crumbs around shards as desired to create a “dirt” effect.
Smokin' Rays Pork Wings. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

How To Tailgate Like a Pro With Smokin’ Ray Rutenis


This video is part of our “Parking Lot Party” story in the September/October 2017 issue. For more content like this, subscribe to the magazine

Smokin’ Rays Short Rib Sliders

Pork Rib Sliders. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Shot Rib Sliders. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Yield – 1 dozen sliders, prep – 4.5 hours, tailgate – 10 minutes

  • 4 lbs. short ribs of beef
  • 4 tbsp. SmokinRays® BBQ Rub
  • 4 tbsp. bacon (diced)
  • 2 onions (chopped)
  • 2 carrots (chopped)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 ½ cups beef broth
  • Mini hamburger buns

To cook:

  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Remove any membranes (or silverskin) from short ribs.
  3. Cover BBQ Rub into the ribs.
  4. Using a cast iron or other heavy wide skillet or pan that is also ovenproof, sweat the bacon until fat covers skillet. Add short ribs and brown on all sides.
  5. Remove ribs and brown onions, carrots then garlic.
  6. When browned, pour off all but a small portion of the drippings remaining in pan.
  7. Add remaining ingredients and bring the sauce to a boil, then cover the pan and transfer to the preheated oven and bake for 3.5 to 4 hours, basting occasionally.
  8. Remove ribs from skillet and let rest. Boil the liquid until thick and strain.
  9. Place in refrigerator until game day.
  10. At tailgate, slice in 2-ounce pieces and warm on grill, brushing with reduced sauce. Serve on small buns with BBQ sauce and melted cheese.

Tip: Chef Ray likes gouda cheese!

Roasted Corn Salsa

Roasted Corn Salsa. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Roasted Corn Salsa. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Yield – 10 servings, time – 30 minutes

  • 2 fresh corn on the cob (shucked)
  • 1/2 cup crushed pineapple
  • 1 small cucumber (peeled and seeded)
  • 1 red bell pepper, roasted (coarsely chopped)
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, roasted (coarsely chopped)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced (optional)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 red onion (small diced)
  • 3 tbsp. fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. SmokinRays® Herb Citrus
  • As needed SmokinRays® All Mixed Up (optional)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)

To cook:

  1. Roast corn in broiler and cool.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and chill in refrigerator.

Tip: Use All mixed up for spicier mix.

Smokin’ Rays Pork Wings

Smokin' Rays Pork Wings. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Smokin’ Rays Pork Wings. Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Yield – 1 dozen, prep – 15 minutes, tailgate – 15 minutes

  • 1 dozen pork wings (already cooked)
  • SmokinRays® Pork Rub (as needed)
  • 12 bacon strips (thin sliced)
  • BBQ sauce (optional)
  • Toothpicks
  • Pam spray

To cook:

  1. Thaw pork wings in refrigerator overnight.
  2. Cover wings with Pork Rub.
  3. Spiral wrap each wing with bacon and secure with toothpick.
  4. Spray with Pam and cook on grill until bacon is crispy (165 degree internal temp).
  5. Brush with bbq sauce and enjoy.

Gator Jello Shots

Go Gators! Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Go Gators! Photo by Aaron Bristol.

Yield – 16, 2-ounce shots

1st stage:

  • 3 ounces gelatin (flavorless)
  • 1 cup boiling Gatorade (blue)
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) vodka
  • 1/2 cup Gatorade (blue)

2nd stage:

  • 3 ounces gelatin (flavorless )
  • 1 cup boiling Gatorade (orange)
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) vodka
  • 1/2 cup Gatorade (orange)

To make:

  1. Combine the liquor and cold Gatorade and place in the refrigerator so they are a consistent temperature. You should have 1 cup of cold liquid.
  2. Pour the gelatin into a bowl.
  3. Add boiling water, stirring until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
  4. Stir in the chilled liquor and cold Gatorade mix. Add food coloring if you want to enhance or change the color.
  5. To make layers, begin by making one flavor of jello shot and fill cups 1/2 or 1/3 of the way full. Chill these until almost set (about 1 to 1 ½ hours) then add the next flavor.

With this basic recipe your can change flavors and colors to promote your own team.

For non alcoholic substitute the vodka for Gatorade

Beaker & Gray's WW? cocktail. Photo by Brett Hufziger.

Where to Drink Today for National Tequila Day; What Will Go Into Rappy’s Space?

It may be Monday, but hold onto your shot glasses because it’s also National Tequila Day! While you can find a good margarita or mezcal drink at plenty of local bars, here are a few sporting drinks or specials made just to celebrate today’s holiday. Read more

Lynn Kalber wasn’t born in Boca Raton, but she attended elementary through high school there, so she might as well have been. She’s a graduate of the University of Florida and has been in journalism most of her life, including 26 years at The Palm Beach Post. She’s written feature and food stories, and edited food copy among other jobs, including blogging about wine (The Swirl Girls). Her husband is writer and author Scott Eyman. They live in West Palm Beach with an assortment of cats and dogs.
View More: https://phillipvn.pass.us/happiesthour-flordecana

Summer of the Sauce: Refreshing Cocktail Recipes and a Wine Dinner

Want to cool off with class? Sip some of these.

I may have mentioned once or twice (!) that I’m a gin girl. I like the spirit in almost any cocktail, and I also like mixing it up with different gins. A current fave is Hendrick’s Gin (produced in Girvan, Scotland by William Grant & Sons), which is infused with rose and cucumber and bottled in a dark brown apothecary-style glass. Classy all the way.

Cheers to a delicious recipe that brings out the best in the gin. Enjoy!

Cucumber Basil Smash (2)

Cucumber Basil Smash

  • 1 ½ parts Hendrick’s Gin
  • 3/4 part fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 part simple syrup
  • 3-5 basil leaves
  • 3-5 cucumber wheels

Method: In a mixing glass muddle basil, cucumber and simple syrup. Add Hendrick’s Gin, lemon juice and ice. Shake well and fine strain into an iced double rocks glass. Garnish with basil leaves and cucumber wheel (Consider also muddling seasonal berries for a flavorful variation.)


Mojitos are as popular as flamingos in South Florida. Here’s a recipe that uses Champagne—or any dry bubbly.

View More: http://phillipvn.pass.us/happiesthour-flordecana

Flor Ultimate Mojito

  • 2 parts Flor de Caña 7
  • 1/2 part lime juice
  • 1/3 part superfine sugar
  • 3 mint leaves
  • Champagne

Method: Muddle lime juice and sugar in a collins glass. Add mint leaves and muddle again. Fill glass 2/3 full with crushed ice and add Flor de Caña rum. Top off with a champagne float. Garnish with sprig of mint.


And a tequila recipe rounds out the trio:

Del Campo 2

Del Campo

  • 1 ½ parts Milagro Silver
  • 1/2 part lime juice
  • 3/4 part celery juice
  • 1/5 part Nopal prickly pear cactus (optional)
  • 1 part pineapple juice
  • 1/2 part cilantro or parsley

Method: with a half lime, rinse around the rim of a rocks glass and salt with chicharron salt. Separately, combine all ingredients and shake well. Strain mix over fresh ice into the chicharron salted rocks glass.

Join Old World rosés at Café Boulud wine dinner

wine dinner

Remember summer is the season of the wine dinner here in SoFla, and Café Boulud’s are notable for their food quality as well as teaching diners a lot about both the food and in this case, Old World rosés.

On June 22, Executive Chef Rick Mace and Chef Patissiere Julie Francheschini will prepare a four-course dinner with wines selected by Head Sommelier Imre Papp. The rosés will be from Champagne and Provence, France, as well as Corsica, Italy, Germany and Austria. Cost is $95 per person; reception is at 6:45 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m.

Also at Café Boulud Tuesday evenings through October, there is free corkage for one bottle per person. That is a great deal.

301 Australian Ave., Brazilian Court Hotel, Palm Beach; 561/655-6060


Hungry for more food news? Visit our food page and subscribe to the magazine for the most delicious coverage of Boca and beyond.

Lynn Kalber wasn’t born in Boca Raton, but she attended elementary through high school there, so she might as well have been. She’s a graduate of the University of Florida and has been in journalism most of her life, including 26 years at The Palm Beach Post. She’s written feature and food stories, and edited food copy among other jobs, including blogging about wine (The Swirl Girls). Her husband is writer and author Scott Eyman. They live in West Palm Beach with an assortment of cats and dogs.
macaron day

For National Macaron Day, We Give You Villa Azur’s Raspberry Macaron Recipe

Villa Azur reveals recipe for Macaron Day

Executive Chef Erwin Mallet of Miami’s Villa Azur is sharing his macaron recipe to celebrate National Macaron Day on May 31. These meringue-based bites are made with egg whites, powered sugar, almond flour, and jam for a delectable sweet. All the ingredients are measured here in grams, which is a common baking measurement. Don’t use the metric system? No problem, just type the conversion you want into Google.

Raspberry Macaron 

national macaron day

Ingredients:

MACARON

  • Almond flour/meal – 212 grams
  • Powdered sugar – 212 grams
  • Egg whites, two separate amounts – 82 grams, 90 grams
  • Red food coloring
  • Granulated sugar, plus a pinch for the egg whites – 236 grams
  • Water – 158 grams

RASPBERRY JAM

  • Raspberry purée – 1 kg
  • Granulated sugar – 50 grams
  • Pectine – 10 grams

Macaron Preparation:

  1. Prepare your pastry bag, parchment paper and sheet pan.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  3. Sift the almond flour and powdered sugar into a large bowl and whisk together, then pour in the 82 grams of egg whites and combine with spatula, add the red colorant.
  4. Place the remaining 90 grams of egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
  5. Combine the 236 grams of granulated sugar and the water in a small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until the syrup reaches 203 degrees F.
  6. Letting the syrup continue to cook, add a pinch of sugar to the egg whites, turn the mixer to medium speed, and whip to soft peaks.
  7. When the syrup reaches 248 degrees F, remove the pan from the heat. Turn the mixer to medium-low speed and slowly add the syrup.
  8. Increase the speed and whip for 5 minutes until it is cool.
  9. Fold one-third of the meringue into the almond mixture, then continue adding the egg whites a little at a time.
  10. Transfer the mixture to the pastry bag with the tip and pipe the macaron, lift up the sheet pan and tap the bottom of the pan to spread the batter evenly and smooth any peaks left by the pastry bag.
  11. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes.

Jam Preparation:

  • Warm up the 1 kg raspberry purée with 50 grams of granulated sugar and 10 grams of pectine until the jam boils.
  • Put the jam in the freezer for 2 hours.
  • When the jam is cold, put it in a blender and mix until the perfect texture.

To fill the macaron:

  • Transfer the jam into the pastry bag.
  • Remove the macaron from the pan.
  • Starting in the center, pipe the jam and top with a second macaron.
  • Put in the refrigerator for 3 hours before serving.

Hungry for more food news? Visit our food page, and subscribe to the magazine for the most delicious coverage of Boca and beyond. 

Lynn Kalber wasn’t born in Boca Raton, but she attended elementary through high school there, so she might as well have been. She’s a graduate of the University of Florida and has been in journalism most of her life, including 26 years at The Palm Beach Post. She’s written feature and food stories, and edited food copy among other jobs, including blogging about wine (The Swirl Girls). Her husband is writer and author Scott Eyman. They live in West Palm Beach with an assortment of cats and dogs.
Maple-Banana-Tiramisu-Trifle_WEB

How to Resist Your Relatives’ Food Advances During Easter and Passover

Alina Z. Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida, Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat […]

Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida, Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at eHow.com, visit Alina’s website at alinaz.com, or follow her on Facebook and Twitter. The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at bocamag.com.