HomeRecipesLactose-Free Dessert by Richard Hawke

Lactose-Free Dessert by Richard Hawke

(This article appeared in the Summer 2020 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)

In this article we feature a dessert called ‘Cherry on Top’ from Chef Richard Hawke. Asked about his inspiration for this dessert, Chef Hawke says, “As the temperature warms up and the seasons change, we gravitate towards summer desserts. With so many different fruits in season to choose from, I decided to create a petit gateau with sour cherries. I paired them with raw almond puree from Capfruit, which gives an interesting flavor profile and creamy texture. Tonka beans add an extra kick to this lactose-free recipe. The sour cherry is used in three different ways: in the sponge, in the coulis and also fresh, in decoration. Using a neutral glaze brings out the natural color of the mousse.”

Cherry on Top

Yield: 12 servings

Note : Chef Hawke used Pavoni Gnammy (PX4372) molds, with the center of the molds pressed completely inside-out, along with Jasmine (PX4355) molds.

Pain de Gênes Almond Sponge (gluten-free)

  • 160 g almond marzipan, 50%
  • 160 g eggs
  • 50 g grapeseed oil
  • 10 g brown rice flour
  • 10 g potato starch
  • 2 g baking powder
  • Frozen sour cherries (Capfruit), as needed
  1. Mix marzipan with eggs in Robot-Coupe (or in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, gradually adding the eggs).
  2. Transfer to stand mixer fitted with whisk and whip to the ribbon stage. Remove a small amount of the batter and stir the oil into it. Fold into the remaining batter and then sift in the dry ingredients.
  3. Pipe 18 g batter into 2” (5 cm) diameter silicone molds and place 3 halved frozen sour cherries in each mold. Bake at 350˚F (180˚C) for about 11 minutes.

Chef’s notes: It is also possible to bake this sponge in large sheets. In this case it is best to spread to 0.5”-0.6” (13-15 mm) thick in order to have the same thickness as in the silicone molds.

Morello Cherry Coulis

  • 255 g sour cherry puree (Capfruit)
  • 9 g water
  • 30 g superfine granulated sugar
  • 4.5 g pectin NH
  1. In saucepan, heat puree with water to 122˚F (50˚C). Mix the sugar with the pectin, add to the puree and blend. Heat to 185˚F (85˚C) and then pour 20 g into half-sphere silicone molds. Blast freeze.

Chef’s notes: Pectin doesn’t need to be boiled. At 185˚F (85˚C) there is less product loss due to evaporation, and also if making a significantly larger batch, there shouldn’t be any problems.

Almond Tonka Mousse (lactose-free)

  • 200 g water
  • 3 g tonka bean
  • 140 g tonka infusion
  • 60 g gelatin mass (1:6 ratio)
  • 25 g coconut oil (odorless)
  • 150 g raw almond puree (Capfruit)
  • ¼ vanilla bean
  • 5 g citrus fiber
  • 80 g egg whites, pasteurized
  • 40 g superfine granulated sugar
  1. In saucepan, bring water and tonka bean to a boil. Cover and infuse for 30 minutes. Strain and weigh out 140 g for infusion.
  2. Melt gelatin mass to 104˚F (40˚C) and pour onto infusion. Melt coconut oil to between 95-104˚F (35-40˚C) and add to infusion mixture along with almond puree, vanilla bean seeds and citrus fiber. Emulsify with a hand blender and allow to cool to 84-86˚F (29-30˚C).
  3. Whip the egg whites with the sugar to a creamy meringue. Fold into tonka base. Proceed with assembly, reserving a small amount of mousse for the final finishing.

Neutral Glaze

  • 418 g water
  • 10 g lemon juice
  • 559 g superfine granulated sugar, divided
  • 13 g pectin X58
  1. In a saucepan, heat the water, lemon juice and 460 g of the sugar to 122˚F (50˚C). Mix the pectin with the remaining 99 g sugar and add to the hot mixture. Heat to 185˚F (85˚C). Cover the surface to prevent a skin for forming, and cool. Heat to 104˚F (40˚C) for use.

Neutral Glaze for Glazing

  • 1000 g Neutral Glaze
  • 100 g water
  1. Heat ingredients to 104˚F (40˚C) and blend with a hand blender, making sure to incorporate air bubbles. Dip frozen petits gateaux in glaze.


  • ¾” (2 cm) diameter white chocolate disks
  • Silver leaf
  1. Press the center of each mold so that it is inside-out. Place each one into a Jasmine (PX4355) mold to ensure that the molds hold their shape during the freezing process.
  2. Pipe mousse into molds halfway up the sides, then scrape the mousse with a spoon to ensure that there are no air bubbles. Place cherry confit insert in the mold and press so that the mousse comes up the sides. Pipe a small amount of mousse on top and finish with the Almond Sponge. Smooth and then blast freeze.
  3. Unmold and slightly cut the top of the mousse with a hot knife. Place a toothpick in the dessert and dip into neutral glaze at 104˚F (40°C).
  4. Place each dessert onto a cake board or plate and place a ¾” (2 cm) diameter disc of white chocolate on top. Glaze a fresh cherry and glue it to the disc using a small dab of the reserved mousse. Finish with your logo and a little silver leaf.

Chef Richard Hawke is a gluten-free guru whose pastry quest is constantly evolving. His current research has him focused on lactose-free and various vegan products. Find more information at richardhawkepastry.com or on Instagram at @richardhawkepastry.

*Photos courtesy of Chef Richard Hawke

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