Well this is it folks, the eighth and final course of our magnificent feast.
When I found this truffle recipe, I loved it so much I just knew I had to turn it into a dessert. The use of dried figs turned my mind immediately to the Middle East and so of course Turkish delight was my very next thought. The consistency of Turkish delight is the complete opposite of this dense, chewy truffle and so it seemed a lovely pairing in my mind. And of course I knew it would bring a lovely colour to the plate.
The final element almost certainly had to be cinnamon based and originally I thought of making cinnamon ice-cream. As I trawled the web for a recipe, my mind turned to custard (not literally of course) and I quickly found a wonderful recipe for cinnamon crème anglaise. Dessert sorted!
My Thermomix made the truffles so easy to prepare, first whizzing the dried figs to a paste, and then combining them with icing sugar and rum. The mixture was rolled into balls and left overnight to dry. The next day I toasted my ground almonds although I must confess I burned the first batch, which is terribly unlike me. I put it down to having 35 things to do at once as I was in the home straight of preparing all eight courses. The beautifully browned almond meal (the second batch of course) was mixed with melted chocolate and my lovely fig balls were dipped and dipped until every one of them was shiny and brown. I was concerned that the fork would leave marks as I pushed the dipped balls from the skewer, but my fears were unfounded.
I was very, very organised on the big day, and so had a few attempts at plating this dish. I tried a few different options but something just didn't look right. I couldn't figure out what it was at first, but eventually realised that the dried rose petals I was planning to use as a garnish were the problem, making the plate way too busy. I finally settled on pistachio dust for the finishing touch, which I had left over from the chopped pistachios that topped my lovely, and very pink, Turkish delight.
The guests were all very happy with dessert, and after seven savoury courses, were pleased I had taken a minimalist approach with the sweets. The fig truffles were out of this world, and although I sent my guests home with a container of Turkish delight, I sneakily kept the remaining truffles for myself. And as it turned out, for the rest of my family who also fell in love with them!
Well that's it, my first Cook's Companion degustation done and dusted. I was certainly proud of the meal, but most of all I was proud of the absolute lack of stress I felt throughout the entire planning, preparation and execution process.
And did I mention how well I slept the following night?