Friday, August 27, 2010


Although, at the beginning of each month, I promise myself to finish my Daring Bakers' challenge long before the deadline I always end up making it at the very last moment. I think that I'm having trouble dealing with the endless flow of time. Every Sunday I feel as if I have got thrown into a washing machine with the tumble dryer program on and I shake my head in disbelief everytime a new month starts. I feel like a hamster running round in a wheel...

The August 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Elissa of "17 And Baking". For the first time, The Daring Bakers partnered with Sugar High Fridays for a co-event and Elissa was the gracious hostess of both. Using the theme of beurre noisette, or browned butter, Elissa chose to challenge Daring Bakers to make a pound cake to be used in either a "Baked Alaska" or in "Ice Cream Petit Fours". The sources for Elissa’s challenge were Gourmet Magazine and David Lebovitz’s “The Perfect Scoop”.

As I had never made "Petits Fours" or "Ice Cream Sandwiches" before, I decided upon making those cute little frozen cakes for my boyfriend's birthday. As we were only two to eat this dessert and since my freezer crammed with "junk" I thought it would be more judicious to cut the the quantities in half. Otherwise I followed the recipe to the letter, nonetheless I added my personal touch to the vanilla ice cream that I flavored with Chinese Five-Spice powder (a mix of powdered star anise, cloves, cinnamon, Sichuan pepper and fennel seeds) and dark rum.

Apart from having problems with the size of my freezer, the high temperatures (the ice cream started melting when I tried to coat the cakes with the cooled glaze - painful), my nerve-wracking hungry cats (who constantly kept walking around my legs and following my every movement as well as step while sitting at the other end of the room with their biiiiiiig psycho eyes) the making of those "Ice Cream Petit Fours" went quite smoothly.

We really liked those icy treats. The cake had a heavenly nutty taste thanks to the browned butter, the ice cream was divinely spicy and boozy and the dark chocolate glaze had a lot of character. All those elements blended very well together, yet I must say that I would have prefered to eat each of them separately (a ball ice cream with a slice of non-frozen cake, the whole drizzled with warm chocolate ganache). Somehow, the cake had less flavor when served frozen and that was a bit annoying as it was very aromatic when I tested it before it was used to make mini sandwiches...

Anyway, I wish to thank Elissa for havi
ng chosen that great dessert and making me try something new. A recipe that delighted us very much!

Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 2 bis
~ Five Spice Ice Cream Petits Fours ~
The brown butter pound cake recipe is adapted from the October 2009 edition of Gourmet. The vanilla ice cream is from ice cream genius David Lebovitz, adapted from The Perfect Scoop. The chocolate glaze for the petit fours is a larger adapted version of this ganache from Godiva Chocolate.

Preparation time:
Ice cream – 45 min active time, ice cream rests/chills for 1 hour then overnight. Without an ice cream maker, the ice cream chills 2-3 hours and must be stirred every 30 minutes.
Brown Butter Pound Cake – 2 hours (includes cooling time).
Chocolate Glaze – 15 minutes
Meringue – 10 minutes
Assembly of Ice Cream Petit Fours – Ice cream must be frozen ahead of time several hours, then the cake and ice cream freeze overnight. After dipping, the petit fours freeze for one hours.
Assembly of Baked Alaska – Ice cream must be frozen head of time several hours, then the Baked Alaska is frozen 1 hour or up to one day.

Equipment required:
• Small and medium saucepans
• Paring knife
• 2 quart (2 litres) bowl
• Electric mixer
• Whisk
• Spatula
• Sieve
• 9”x9” (23cmx23cm) square baking pan
• 10” (25 cm) skillet
• Cake leveler/serrated knife
• Cooling racks
• Rimmed half sheets
• Teacups
• Plastic wrap
• Piping bags (optional)
• Ice cream maker (optional)
• Cooking blow torch (optional)


Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 3 bis

Ingredients For The "Five Spice Ice Cream":
1 Cup (250ml) Whole milk

A pinch of sea salt
3/4 Cup (165g) Sugar
1 Vanilla bean, split lengthwise OR 2 teaspoons (10ml) pure vanilla extract
2 Cups (500ml) Heavy (approx 35% butterfat) cream
5 Large egg yolks
1 Tsp Pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 Tsps Chinese 5 spices
3 Tbs Dark rum

Method For The "Five Spice Ice Cream":
1. Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a medium saucepan until the liquid steams. Scrape out the seeds of the vanilla bean with a paring knife and add to the milk, along with the bean pod. Cover, remove from heat, and let infuse for an hour. (If you do not have a vanilla bean, simply heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a medium saucepan until the liquid steams, then let cool to room temperature.).
2. Set up an ice bath by placing a 2-quart (2 litre) bowl inside a large bowl partially filled with water and ice. Put a strainer on top of the smaller bowl and pour in the cream.
3. In another bowl, lightly beat the egg yolks together. Reheat the milk in the medi
um saucepan until warmed, and then gradually pour ¼ cup warmed milk into the yolks, constantly whisking to keep the eggs from scrambling. Once the yolks are warmed, scrape the yolk and milk mixture back into the saucepan of warmed milk and cook over low heat. Stir constantly and scrape the bottom with a spatula until the mixture thickens into a custard which thinly coats the back of the spatula.
4. Strain the custard into the heavy cream and stir the mixture until cooled. Add the vanilla extract (1 teaspoon [5ml] if you are using a vanilla bean; 3 teaspoons [15ml] if you are not using a vanilla bean), the 5 spice, the rum and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, preferably overnight.
5. Remove the vanilla bean and freeze in an ice cream maker. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can make it without a machine (see instructions from David Lebovitz).


Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 5 bis

Ingredients For the "Brown Butter Pound Cake
19 Tbs (9.5 oz/275g) Unsalted butter

2 Cups (200g) Sifted cake flour (not self-rising; sift before measuring/see “Note” section for cake flour substitution)
1 Tsp (5g) Baking powder
1/2 Tsp (3g) Sea salt
1/2 Cup (110g) Packed light brown sugar
1/3 Cup (75g) Granulated sugar
4 Large eggs
1/2 Tsp Pure vanilla extract

Method For the "Brown Butter Pound Cake":
1. Preheat the oven to 325°F/160°C and put a rack in the center. Butter and flour a 9”x9” (23cmx23cm) square pan.
2. Place the butter in a 10” (25cm) skillet over medium heat. Brown the butter until the milk solids are a dark chocolate brown and the butter smells nutty. (Don’t take your eyes off the butter in case it burns.) Pour into a shallow bowl and chill in the freezer until just congealed,
15-30 minutes.
3. Whisk together cake flour, baking powder, and salt.
4. Beat the brown butter, light brown sugar, and granulated sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well, and then the vanilla extract.
5. Stir in the flour mixture at low speed unt
il just combined.
6. Scrape the batter into the greased and floured 9”x9” (23cmx23cm) square pan. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula and rap the pan o
n the counter. Bake until golden brown on top and when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes.
7. Cool in the pan 10 minutes. Run a knife along the edge and invert right-side-up onto a cooling rack to cool completely.


Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 1 bis

Ingredients For The "Chocolate Glaze":
9 Oz (250g) Dark chocolate, finely chopped

1 Cup (250ml) Heavy (approx 35% butterfat) cream
1 1/2 Tbs (32g) Light corn syrup, Golden syrup, or agave nectar
2 Tsp (10ml) Pure vanilla extract (I omitted it)

For The "Chocolate Glaze":
1. Stir the heavy cream and light corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add the dark chocolate.
2. Let sit 30 seconds, then stir to completely melt the chocolate. Stir in the vanilla a
nd let cool until tepid before glazing the petit fours.



1. Line a 9”x9” (23cmx23cm) pan with plastic wrap, so that no sides of the pan are exposed and so there is some extra plastic wrap hanging off the sides. Spread 1 ¾ to 2 cups (450ml to 500ml) ice cream into the pan. Cover with more plastic wrap and freeze several hours.
2. Once the brown butter pound cake has completely cooled, level the top with a cake leveler or a serrated knife. Then split the cake in half hori
zontally to form two thin layers.
3. Unwrap the frozen ice cream. Flip out onto one of the layers of cake and top with the second layer of cake. Wrap well in plastic wrap and return to the freezer overnight.
4. Make the chocolate glaze (see above.).
5. While the glaze cools, trim ¾” (2cm) off each side of the ice cream cake to leave a per
fectly square 7.5” (19cm) ice cream cake. Cut the cake into twenty five petit fours, each 1.5”x1.5” (4cmx4cm).

Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 4 bisNOTES

• While there is not a great deal of active time, this recipe cannot be easily completed in a day because of freezing time. Make the ice cream first, then the pound cake, then the glaze/meringue as stated in the assembly instructions.
• The pound cake calls for cake flour. You can make 1 cup of cake flour by placing 2 tablespoons of corn starch in a 1 cup measure, and filling to the top with all purpose flour.
• The ice cream can be flavored however you want by infusing the cream, stirring in extracts or mix ins, or folding in purees, sauces, etc.
• For the petit fours, you can also use your own recipe for fondant, poured fondant, royal icing, or marzipan. I recommend the chocolate glaze because it freezes well and balances the sweetness of the ice cream, but it does limit the scope of your decorations.


Etant donné la longueur du texte original, je n'ai malheureusement pas pu faire une traduction française de ce billet et je m'en excuse auprès de tous mes amis lecteurs et blogueurs francophones!

C'est pourquoi je vous suggère de vous rendre sur le blog mentionné ci-dessous. Vous y trouverez cette recette en version française.

Chez Isa de "Les Gourmandises d'Isa" (Canada)
Chez Vibi de "La Casserole Carrée" (Canada)

Petits Fours Picnik-Collage 6 bis


  1. What a lovely posting; such care and talent! Your Petit Fours are beautiful and the accents of the other pictures add such color and style. I'm up at 2am in the US trying to finish mine; I can so relate to the time...never enough.

  2. Thank you for sharing your recipe, which as always looks superb! I really love the fact that you don't just give the recipe, but insights as to how it all worked for you and changes you might make in the future. My food hero!

  3. Adorables petits fours Rosa !

  4. These look beautiful. You take fantastic photos! I never would have thought of using five spice in ice cream - I must try that.

  5. Bravo Ma Rosa, comme d'habitude tu as assuré ;)
    Je suis Bluffée par ta constance : Bravo !
    Grosses Bizzz du Week-end !

  6. Your DB challenges are always so beautiful and this is certainly no exception! The petit fours look so delicate and inviting :)

  7. Quelles merveilles ces petits fours ! L'effet visuel est vraiment génial et en plus ça a l'air délicieux !!!

  8. What tempting pictures and texture of the cake Rosa, lovely.

  9. Beautiful and i just love all the pictures especially the last one were the chocolate is almost melting .

  10. Tes petits fours sont superbes et avec la glace aux épices, ils ont l'air très très bons!

  11. What a great idea to add five spice to the ice cream! Well done.

  12. wow, that`s so drooling!


  13. Il ne te resterait pas un de ces délicieux petits fours par hasard? C'est qu'avec tes photos, tu m'as donné l'envie d'en manger :) Ils ont l'air tellement bons...

  14. et il t'en reste o congel de ces trucs la ????????? pax moi 1, juste 1 seul, je veux bien :) :)
    Biz ma Grande et tjrs aussi beau ton blog :)

  15. That's so true that cake from the freezer seems to have less flavor. Your five spice ice cream sounds fantastic, and your petit fours look great!

  16. Absolutely beautiful photography Rosa! 'And your petit fours are gorgeous!

  17. Love the perfect layers and your addition of five spice.
    I kept my ganache covered cakes in the fridge for a few hours before serving.
    The ganache kept the ice-cream from melting out and my cake had become really soft and nice.

  18. I can understand what you mean about frozen cake having less flavor than non-frozen. But from the looks of the beautiful photos, I'd be happy to eat a dozen of those petit-fours. Great idea adding the 5-spice to the ice cream.

  19. How perfect little treats Rosa. They are absolutely tempting.

  20. So great to have you back in the blog world....especially with these petits fours!! They are gorgeous. Wonderful additions with the brown butter & chinese five spice :) xo

  21. Rosa, there was "translate this page" button on the top left corner, but I realised that many people can't see it. That`s why, I`ve already moved this button to right side on the top of column.

    Thanks for your great suggestion!

  22. Of course yours are drop dead gorgeous! Great job, I was excited that you chose the petit fours.

  23. These sound amazing and your photographs are out of this world. Also loving the new look of your site. Great job!

  24. Ces challenges nous apprennent toujours beaucoup. Comme chaque mois, tu as relevé avec succès. Ce doit être si parfumé avec du chinese Five-Spice.
    Bon week-end

  25. Rosa, your petit fours are amazing! The flavors sound great! Adorable post, as always!

  26. Wow perfect petit fours looks gorgeous with beautiful pictures... Awesome work.

  27. Mmm... 5 spice ice cream sounds so yummy :)

  28. Rosa, they are so beautiful! They have come out perfect! I missed it again this time. Hoping to get back to action next month on.

  29. That looks like a lot of work..but totally looks worth it.
    Beautiful clicks! Loved the chocolate glaze.

  30. These are so perfect! I love the idea of the 5 spice ice cream, so creative!

  31. Wow, browned butter, 5-spice, and dark rum? What an inspired combination, all in the form of adorable petit fours. Your boyfriend is one lucky guy, Rosa XD.

  32. Fantastic Rosa ... just so beautiful. I love the choice of flavours and the pairings. WOW!! I'm in love!!

  33. Quels beaux petits fours, je vois à l'écran!
    ILs sont vraiment jolis et sûrement délicieux, à regarder tes belles photos.

  34. very nice looking petit fours congrats for the challenge

  35. Maria @ Scandi Foodie10:21 PM, August 27, 2010

    Looks as heavenly as ever Rosa! Very creative choices!

  36. Rosa! These are absolutely delicious looking-even beautiful would be appropriate. You know, I just would never attempt such a thing. I'm too slow. It would all melt away with me in charge (smile). Ooh, and photographing it-no way;)!

  37. The five-spice sounds really good. I know what you mean about freezer space - I have a new to me freezer sitting in the driveway right now.

  38. Whoa! The brown butter pound cake alone is enough to make me salivate. But with chocolate, too? Looks like a total winner to me.

  39. That looks so good, and the five spice ice cream that's something very new to me.

  40. I love your idea of using Chinese five spice in the ice cream! That's brilliant!

  41. Rosa, I really like the idea of five spice ice cream!!! So perfect for coming fall too.. cool yet with heat kick!!

    Agree with you, the cake frozen was very unappealing :O

    P.S. Love your cats!! LOL

  42. What a great idea, adding the five spice powder to the vanilla ice cream - I never would have thought of that. Your finished petit fours are beautiful - the layers are so clean and straight. And you photos are amazing, as well. Really great job.

  43. You do every challenge with such style and beauty, Rosa. This one is no exception. I love your use of 5-spice!

  44. c'est magnifique Rosa, c'est un défi parfaitement réussi :)

  45. These DB challenges always seem so..."challenging"...I'd say you've outdone yourself on this one Rosa...these look amazing!

  46. As much as it pained you to coat the cakes, I love the frosty look in that first picture! Awesome.

  47. Hi Rosa,
    I'm new to following your blog and I just wanted to tell you that your food makes me salivate! I found you from looking up bread recipe's, I have a very old pampered sour dough starter and I followed your tips for the loaf.

    I also took your tip in trying King Arthurs brand of flour and loved it!

  48. Yum! Love the sound of the five spice ice cream. They turned out so cute. I'm envious of your perfect looking glaze

  49. Comme toujours le résultat est magnifique Rosa ! Et quelles belles photos !
    Bises et bon weekend

  50. Oh my, the five spice ice cream sound amazing! And your petits look perfect. Great job Rosa!

  51. Oh are a true inspiration...nothing short of fantabulous. You truly outdid yourself. Grande applauso...Brava.

    I've never made these...therefore, thank for your insight with the execution of the recipe ;o)

    Ciao for now,

  52. it looks so amazing (and tasty)! and beautiful photos as well <3

  53. Quelle superbe recette !
    Quel boulot ! Bravo !
    Digne d'un grand chef !

    Je n'arrive pas à répondre à ton sondage alors je te donne mon avis ici.
    Pour moi, ce serait ok fin septembre ou octobre et en Suisse romande.

    Voilà, bien à toi

  54. Tes photos sont splendides et tes petits fours tous autant. Rosa, tu as des doigts de fée.
    je ne laisse pas toujours de commentaires mais mes visites sont toujours un réel plaisir chez toi

  55. Wow, Rosa, all the work, the whole lot, ice cream, cake, cover!! Fantastic!!!

  56. Rosa. This was amazing. I will never ever try it but I am so impressed with your culinary skill and your photos.

  57. looks so tempting and very beautiful...

  58. What a selection of ice creams! I love that five-spiced flavour the most!

  59. Des p'tites merveilles!
    Bravo! Encore une fois le défi est relevé haut la main!!!!

  60. Those petits fours look just perfect!


  61. Quelle décadente gourmandise;) Bon dimanche ma Chère Rosa!! xxx

  62. Brilliant, Rosa! Those photos are making my mouth water! I can't wait to try the brown butter pound cake.

  63. avec le thé c'est formidable !Pierre

  64. I'm on vacation, but this will be the first thing i make when I return. Looks amazing!!!

  65. This is really impressive, Rosa! Have you thought about opening your own bakery?

  66. Love your take on this month's challenge. Gorgeous.

  67. I am so amazed that you managed to make this on your return from vacation! The ice-cream flavored with 5spices, the pound cake with brown sugar and the chocolate coating are all a perfect marriage of flavors and the ice-cream cake combo is perfect in this heat!

  68. These came out beautiful and look absolutely delicious. I appreciate all of the work you put into these. Thanks for sharing the recipe and tips to make them:)

  69. Oh, I love the sounds of this dessert and with 5 Spice powder, what a heady combination. It just sounds amazing.

  70. Happy birthday to your boyfriend! These petite four is definitely a graceful and delicious cake for a celebration...

    It is funny.... I do sometimes feel like hamster running in a wheel too myself.. :-)

    Sawadee from Bangkok,

  71. C'est sûr que préparer ces petites choses en pleine chaleur a dû avoir quelque-chose de stressant ! ;o) EN tout cas, le résultat est beau comme tout ...

  72. Oh la la,j'en veux!!!

  73. Small freezer and melting ice cream? Your petits four are perfect and simply beautiful! Excellent as usual, dear Rosa!

  74. Rosa, this is too stunning! I tried to pick one off the screen.

  75. Those sound EXQUISITE! I've seen this on a handful of other daring baker's sites, but really yours are the most tempting to me.. need to try your recipe....

  76. Girl, I just love your delectables! So scrumptious! I love the brown butter treat. Right up my alley. And the flowers are a great juxtaposition.


  77. C'est magnifique. Quel travail! bien trop complique pour moi, mais j'adore l'idee de parfumer la glace avec de la poudre de 5 parfums. Excellente idee Rosa.

  78. Merci Rosa, tes photos sont incroyables ! je m'en vais regarder en francais parce-que mon anglais est un peu limité ! bises et belle semaine !!!!

  79. Beautiful petit fours! And amazing photos!

  80. beautiful tiny cakes, simply stunning and wat a flavor combo!!


  81. Last minute or not, those are all amazing!

  82. perfect summer treat! ice cream petit fours. and they are so cute too.

  83. Five spice ice cream sounds so cool!

  84. Really beautiful sounding flavour combination Rosa! :)

  85. wawwwwwwwwwwww,trop gourmand

  86. Woow! Great photos,amazing recipe!
    İt looks so yummylicious,i can't wait to try it..

  87. OMG! They all look absolutely delicious and professionally made!!

  88. Oh Rosa, your petit fours are gorgeous, can only imagine how they the photos as well...very very nice!

  89. Wow your petit fours look absolutely stunning. Very nicely done.

    P.S - What template are you using?? I am looking to change mine, like how yours is right up against the left edge!

  90. five spice ice cream is AWESOME, rosa! bravo--you did a masterful job. :)

  91. Oh, wow! I don't think I've ever seen a petits four that looked so good! And five spice ice cream? Yum!

  92. Mais quel travail de fou !! Félicitations... tes petits fours sont à croquer !!

  93. fantastic post. Love your blog :) your photographs are awesome :)

  94. WOW - your Petit Fours look amazing. Nice work on that challange. Stumbled across your blog and it is great.

  95. Quelle gourmandise ces bouchées avec le glaçage de chocolat!!

  96. I love the idea of 5 spice ice cream, and tucked inside of the petits four with such delicious sounding ingredients! Sounds amazing...

  97. WHOA. That is all I can say! Beautiful and tasty!

  98. I have never used spice to make ice cream. This sounds so good! Love the picture of the cross section showing all layers.

  99. Beautiful petit fours!! Very nicely done.

  100. I love the idea of adding the 5 spices. Lovely!

  101. Oh, wow, Rosa! You did a superb job on your petit fours...they look perfect!

  102. would not mind having at bite at yours! lovely!

  103. Your petit fours are some of the most beautiful I've seen in this challenge! The edibility - with that melty chocolate.. is off the charts! Gorgeous photos too, as always!