Culinary Trends: Pastry Chefs Emerging From the Ashes? (2)
Japanese ingredients, like green tea powder (matcha), shiso, and black sesame, were also common currents in pastry dishes across the US. Jordan Kahn (of XIV by Michael Mina, LA) coated white chocolate “vines” with matcha to arch over his wood ice cream—yes, wood ice cream; yes, it tasted like wood; yes, it was delicious; Daniel Skurnik used matcha for a sponge and black sesame as a dark and deeply flavored paste and powder to go with chocolate ganache; Ron Paprocki of David Burke Townhouse (NYC) also makes a green tea sponge for his raspberry crème.
Clearly sponges are the innovative pastry chef’s cake of choice these days. We saw the airy, springy confection pulled apart into shaggy pieces strewn over molded custards, piled next to semifreddo, and nestled next to orange blossom Bavarian spheres and blueberry bubbles. And gel sheets of various flavors were used to gracefully sheath components on the plate.