Coconut Matcha by Robert Nieto

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(This recipe appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)

While planning this dessert, I looked at what was in season and what would pair well with coconut and matcha flavors. I saw Meyer lemon and huckleberry and thought they would be a perfect match. The flavor components balance out well and are the perfect combination of creaminess, acidity, and earthiness.

Yield: 4-6 servings


Meyer Lemon Curd

  • 150 g Meyer lemon juice
  • 60 g granulated sugar, divided
  • 50 g whole egg
  • 20 g egg yolk
  • 75 g citric acid

1. In a small pot, combine lemon juice and half of the sugar and bring to boil.
2. Mix egg, egg yolk, and remaining sugar in a small bowl.
3. Temper the yolk mixture into the lemon juice mixture and cook until thickened. Strain. Pipe into 1” sphere Fleximolds. Freeze.


Huckleberry Jam

  • 40 g granulated sugar
  • 5 g apple pectin
  • 150 g huckleberries
  • 75 g water
  • 2 g citric acid

1. Combine the sugar and pectin and set aside.
2. Heat the berries, water and citric acid over low heat. Stir in the sugar-pectin mixture and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Reserve the jam until needed.


Coconut Cream

  • 425 g heavy cream
  • 70 g coconut macaroons, toasted
  • 1 sheet gelatin, bronze, bloomed
  • 120 g white chocolate
  • 1 g salt

1. Bring cream to a boil. Stir in coconut macaroons and infuse for 20 minutes.
2. Bring infusion back to a simmer. Stir in drained gelatin. Strain over chocolate and mix until homogenous. Chill for a few hours.
3. Whip the cream to soft-medium peaks. Reserve in refrigerator.


Brown Butter Financier

  • 100 g granulated sugar
  • 50 g almond flour
  • 33 g brown rice flour
  • 83 g egg whites
  • 83 g browned butter
  • 1 g salt

1. Place dry ingredients in mixer on low speed. Add the egg whites, then add the butter in a slow stream, mixing until combined.
2. Spread the mixture on a sprayed and lined 1/8 sheet pan. Bake at 320˚F for 6 minutes. Cool. Chill for 20 minutes.
3. Cut into 2” rounds. Reserve until needed.


Matcha Shortbread

  • 250 g unsalted butter
  • 75 g confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 g salt
  • 250 g all-purpose flour
  • 20 g matcha powder

1. Cream the butter until soft. Stir in the confectioners’ sugar and salt. Add flour and matcha powder and mix.
2. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a rectangle form to 1/8” thickness. Using a wheel cutter and ruler, cut out 4” squares.
3. Place dough on a half sheet pan that has been sprayed and lined. Freeze for 20 minutes.
4. Bake at 325˚F for 6-8 minutes. Chill before serving.


Chocolate Shells

  • Colored cocoa butter in Alabaster White, Tropical Green and Indigo Blue
  • Cacao Barry Blanc Satin chocolate, tempered

1. Brush a streak of the colored cocoa butters into six 3” spheres of a polycarbonate chocolate mold and allow to set for a few minutes. Fill shells with chocolate, then invert to remove excess. Reinvert and allow to set.


Assembly

  • Indigo blue chocolate disc garnish
  • Micro flowers

1. Unmold chocolate shells and invert. Pipe a small amount of Coconut Cream in bottom. Place Meyer Lemon Curd insert on top. Pipe Coconut Cream on top. Spoon or pipe jam on top. Pipe on another layer of coconut cream. Place 2” round financier on top to cover. Invert and sphere on top of matcha shortbread. Decorate with indigo blue chocolate disc and micro flowers.


About Robert “Buttercup” Nieto

Robert Nieto is the Pastry Chef for Jackson Family Wines in Santa Rosa, California. Watching Great Chefs as a kid, it was the episode with Master Pastry Chef Chris Northmore that sparked his love for pastry. Nieto’s style has evolved to being “classic with a modern twist” through the years and he finds inspiration from the seasonal ingredients in the garden at Kendall Jackson Winery.