Honeycomb

Honeycomb

By
From
Best Kitchen Basics
Makes
20 × 20 cm slab
Photographer
Petrina Tinslay

I once worked at Arpège for the mercurial M. Alain Passard. His mille-feuille was the reason I wanted to work there. Lighter than any puff pastry I’d ever had, it was like eating a block of crunchy bubbles. One of the secrets was to cut away most of the exterior to leave the caramelised honeycombed interior. It was this idea that I wanted to achieve with this confection. It took Lauren, pastry chef at Marque, and me some weeks to achieve the result. The recipe was everyday but it turns out, like everything else extraordinary, the secret was the sum of many tiny details. Serve with crème fraîche and 1 plus 1 = 3.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
18g bicarbonate of soda
150g liquid glucose
65g honey
415g caster sugar

Method

  1. Line a 20 × 20 × 5 cm baking tin with baking paper and warm it in a 100°C oven.
  2. Sift the bicarbonate of soda into a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Put the glucose, honey, sugar and 75 ml water in a large, deep, heavy-based saucepan and stir to combine. Wipe the side of the saucepan with a wet pastry brush to prevent any sugar from sticking to the side and burning. Turn the heat to medium – once the pan is on the heat, do not stir the sugar mixture as it will crystallise. Bring the mixture to 155°C. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and add the bicarbonate of soda all at once. Whisk quickly but thoroughly, ensuring the bicarbonate of soda is evenly dispersed through the sugar syrup. The mixture will instantly start to rise, but do not panic – whisk a little longer.
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin. The honeycomb will rise rapidly in the tin before setting. Do not move the tin before the honeycomb has had a chance to cool and set or the volume will disappoint.
  5. Leave to cool for 1 hour minimum to achieve a hard-crack texture. Use a large serrated bread knife to remove the smooth outer layer and leave the aerated centre.
Tags:
best
kitchen
basics
mark
best
pei modern
marque
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