Michelin star chef Philippe Chevrier’s recipe for mixed-berry crisp with nougat and caramelized pecan ice cream
Philippe Chevrier is head chef and owner of Domaine de Châteauvieux in Satigny, right in the middle of the vineyards just outside Geneva. His restaurant has two Michelin stars and a 19/20 rating in the GaultMillau restaurant guide. Geneva gourmets have had a soft spot for him for a long time now and his restaurant is the institution of fine dining in this city.
Chevrier posts a recipe a month on his site, and this is an adaptation of this month’s. Admittedly, it is a recipe for experienced cooks and people who really like to bake or who have a real sweet tooth. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be motivated enough to get through all the steps.
Prepare well ahead by carefully reading through the recipe and checking that you have all the ingredients. You might also want to make the nougat paste (needed for the ice cream), tuile cookies, ice cream and caramelized pecans the day before. Please note that you need an electric ice cream maker. Always make the coulis right before serving.
If you’re really well organized, set aside a block of a few hours to complete it. In any case, this recipe is for real dessert enthusiasts and semi-professionals, so follow the instructions carefully.
For cooking equipment you might not own, I’ve pointed to links that will help you improvise. Bon appétit!
Michelin-star Vertig’O's pastry chef: Emmanuel Lebled
The Vertig’O restaurant in the Hôtel de la Paix in Geneva has a Michelin star and a 16/20 in the respected GaultMillau restaurant guide.
Vertig’O also has a great pastry chef in Emmanuel Lebled.
Every month or so, the restaurant publishes a leaflet which includes a recipe from the restaurant. This recipe for cinnamon pear crumble is adapted from their October 2009 leaflet, but it is still seasonal as we anxiously await the fruits of spring.
I’m sorry not to have converted the quantities this time around, but it became extremely complicated, so I dropped the whole idea. I think it’s high time we all bought a set of metric scales! If all else fails, refer to my post about metric conversions. For equivalents of the weight of specific foods such as butter, almonds, and different kinds of flour, you can also consult Recipes4Us.
The recipe is in three parts. Start by making the crumble topping. Poach and then caramelize the pears. Finish off by arranging all the ingredients in a baking dish and baking. Timing is important, since the crumble is best served warm.
Recipe: Cinnamon pear crumble
1. Make the crumble
Mix all the above ingredients together. Knead with hands until it forms a crumble.
2. Poach the pears
Ingredients:5 large ripe pears 2 liters of water 300 grams of sugar 1 stick of cinnamon Peel of one orange, grated
1 star anise Peel of one lemon, grated
Mix water and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and boil slowly, stirring with a wooden spoon, until it forms a syrup.
Add star anise, orange peel and lemon peel to syrup.
Peel pears. Remove core and any hard parts. Over low heat, poach them slowly in the syrup.
When soft (but not falling apart), remove them from heat. Leave pears in the syrup until the they cool off.
3. Sautée and caramelize the pears
Ingredients:40 grams of light brown cane sugar Small knob of butter 30 grams of white raisins Rum Shot of pear liqueur
Pour enough pear liqueur over raisins to cover them. Leave to soak.
Remove poached pears from syrup. Dice.
Put sugar in saucepan. Heat over low heat until it forms a caramel, stirring constantly and being careful that it doesn’t burn. Add butter and pears.
Turn heat higher, and caramelize, stirring constantly and making sure pears do not burn.
Add raisins and rum. Flambé.
Remove from heat. Cool at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 150° C.
When pears are cool, put them in a baking dish. Cover with crumble.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or yogurt sorbet.
Le Vertig’O: free WiFi and low-calorie nice-price menus
This well located, ultra contemporary restaurant is handy for upscale lunches near Cornavain train station, particularly for those who need WiFi access, which is free in the entire hotel. It is located in the Hôtel de la Paix on the Quai du Mont Blanc, right on the lake and near the jet d’eau.
Chef Jérôme Manifacier was recently awarded his first Michelin start and a 16/20 in the GaultMillau restaurant guide for Switzerland. He turns out a light, modern cuisine, with variations on Swiss, French and Mediterranean classics.
The winter menu includes original dishes such as roasted pineapple with Sechuan pepper in puff pastry with piña colada sauce and duet of warm and cold foie gras with beetroot emulsion served with homemade gingerbread.
Set menus goes for CHF 95 and 135, but are hefty, so you’d better be hungry. There is also a special 3-course menu under 800 calories which changes with the seasons.
The lunch special goes for CHF 55 for 3 courses, which is not bad for a grand hotel. It changes every day.
There is a good selection of local and well as other wines available by the glass, and an even wider selection if you want a bottle.Le Vertig’O, Quai du Mont Blanc 22, 1211 Geneva. Tel. +41 (0) 22 909 60 66. Opening hours: Tues. through Friday 12H00 to 14H00, 19H30 to 22H00. Open for dinner only on Saturday. Closed Sunday and Monday. Map.