WARM RUBY RED GRAPEFRUIT; CANDIED POMELO, BERGAMOT HONEY
DURING THE WINTER, we are blessed with the most fragrant citrus. By baking the ruby red grapefruit, we bring a sweeter underlying tone to its natural bitterness, while bergamot honey adds a floral note. The segments are set on a smooth crème fraîche parfait and a moist and fruity mirliton biscuit. Pomelo rinds are candied slowly in the traditional method and bring a variation of tanginess. Use extra candied rinds to make other treats, such as dipped in chocolate, rolled in sugar, or mixed into cakes.
Cut the pomelos in half, squeeze and reserve the juice, and carve out the flesh from the interior with a spoon, taking care to not puncture the rind.
Place the rind in a medium saucepan, cover with cold water, and simmer for 5 minutes. Strain and repeat 4 more times. Strain the water from the pan; pour in the reserved juice, 1½ quarts of water, and 7½ cups of the sugar; simmer until the sugar is dissolved.
Remove from the heat, cover, and rest at room temperature overnight, making sure the rinds are submerged. For each of the next 2 days, add another 1½ cups sugar, simmer until dissolved, and cover again. On the third day, add the corn syrup with the 1½ cups remaining sugar and simmer until dissolved. Reserve the rinds in the liquid, refrigerated, for up to 1 month. Strain one-half of a rind and cut into bite-size slices before serving.
For the Earl Grey Ice Cream
In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and heavy cream to a simmer; remove from the heat, add the tea, cover, and infuse for 3 minutes. Strain and discard the tea. Return the liquid to medium heat. In a medium heatproof bowl, whip the sugar and yolks until smooth. While whisking, gradually pour half of the hot cream into the egg yolk mixture. Gradually whisk the mixture back into the saucepan. Return the pan to medium heat and cook, while whisking, until the mixture reaches 185°F. Remove from the heat and pass through a fine-meshed sieve into a bowl set over ice. Stir until well chilled and spin in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
For the Biscuit Mirliton
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a rimmed 9½ × 13-inch baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper and coat with nonstick cooking spray. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the honey, eggs and yolks, zest, and vanilla seeds. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the almond flour, sugar, and flan powder on medium speed. Stream in the egg mixture and continue to mix for 2 minutes, stopping to scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula halfway through.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet, spread into a flat layer with an offset spatula, and bake for 14 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven, turn the cake out onto a cooling rack, and turn off the oven. Once cooled, cut 4 circles from the biscuit with a 2¼-inch ring cutter. Store in an airtight container until ready to use. Return the biscuit trim to the warm oven until dried, about 30 minutes. Cool, and transfer the trim to a food processor. Pulse into fine crumbs and reserve for the croustillant tuile powder.
For the Croustillant Tuile
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat. Sift half of the powder over the prepared baking sheet in an even layer. Bake for 3 minutes, or until the sugar is melted. Remove from the oven, cover with a sheet of parchment paper, and carefully flip the Silpat onto a flat surface. Peel off the Silpat and, with a 2¼-inch ring cutter, cut at least 8 discs from the sugar. While still warm, lift the discs off the parchment with an offset spatula and transfer to a flat tray. If the sugar becomes too brittle when cut or lifted, slide the parchment back onto the baking sheet and place in the oven for 30 seconds to soften. Cool the tuiles at room temperature and store in an airtight container.
For the Bergamot Crème Fraîche Parfait
Line an 8½ × 4½-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and acetate paper. Soak the gelatin sheet in ice water for 10 minutes; squeeze dry. In a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer. Meanwhile, in a medium heatproof bowl, whip the sugar and yolks until smooth. While whisking, gradually pour half of the hot cream into the egg yolk mixture. Gradually whisk the mixture back into the saucepan. Return the saucepan to the heat and cook, while whisking, until it reaches 185°F. Remove from the heat and stir in the gelatin until dissolved. Pass the mixture through a fine-meshed sieve and let cool to 104°F. Whisk in the crème fraîche and bergamot extract. Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf pan and freeze until solid, about 2 hours. With a 2¼-inch ring cutter, cut out at least 4 circles from the parfait. Transfer the circles to a plate and refrigerate to thaw, about 30 minutes.
For the Baked Grapefruit
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Arrange the grapefruit supremes in a single layer in a nonreactive baking pan. Drizzle the honey over the top and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, drain the juice into a small saucepan; cover the grapefruit and keep warm. Bring the juice to a simmer and reduce to a syrupy texture; reserve, kept warm, for sauce.
For the Crunchy Grapefruit Supremes
In a small saucepan, heat the isomalt to 340°F, remove from the heat, and cool to 285°F. With a chocolate fork (or regular fork), pierce a grapefruit supreme and dip it into the sugar. Transfer to a tray lined with a Silpat. Repeat with the remaining segments. Rest the segments at room temperature for 5 minutes but no longer than 30 minutes before serving.
For each serving, top a piece of mirliton biscuit with a tuile, a portion of parfait, another tuile, and 5 to 6 segments of baked grapefruit. Top with a few slices of candied pomelo rind. Alongside the biscuit, scoop a spoonful of ice cream onto another piece of pomelo rind. Arrange 2 crunchy grapefruit supremes and 2 slices of pomelo rind, and dot the sauce on the plate.