On this occasion Ramón Freixa is the creator of this delicious bite that is overflowing with intense surprises
Tomato Cronut with Smoked Acorn-Fed Gran Reserva Ham
The latest New York classic, a combination of croissant and donut, has been reinvented by the expert hands of Ramón Freixa, who proposes a savoury version based on the flaky viennoiserie pastry in which freeze-dried tomato base takes the place of the traditional butter. And filling up the cavity of this original cronut we encounter semi-dried tomato and FISAN Acorn-Fed Gran Reserva Ham.
In order to create an even more surprising experience, when the cronut is about to be served-up it is slightly smoked with Holm Oak shavings, which connects us even more intensely to the flavour and origin of the acorn-fed Iberico pig.
Now, wouldn’t you just love to try and make this?
As is logical, Ramón Freixa’s exact recipe is unique and unrepeatable, although the spirit of the ALLIANCE OF FLAVOUR is that of offering us a new way of enjoying the most traditional of Ibérico flavours; thus from this blog we want to offer you all the information so that you can also undertake this unusual path right in your own homes. The idea is not to come up with an exact reproduction of the chef’s creations, but to simply propose the possibility of enriching our cooking with his provocative suggestions.
The cronut is a hybrid combination of a croissant-doughnut pastry, which was invented in the year 2003 by Dominique Ansel. Although there is another chef who claims that his invention is even earlier, having called it the “dosant”. The idea basically consists of a viennoiserie pastry cut-out into a ring shape and fried in grape seed oil, just like a donut, instead of baking it as you would with a croissant. It is then sprinkled with sugar, filled and/or glazed.
Our suggestion if you want to start to take your first “baby steps” with the cronut is to use good commercial laminated dough that can be found in the cold or frozen food section. This will save us an awful lot of work, as preparing this pastry dough is indeed an arduous task.
Then all you have to do is follow the instructions of the manufacturer and shape the dough into a ring shape (just like a donut) before frying it in abundant grape seed oil. This way your cronut is ready to be used in our recipe, as it is a savoury recipe. If you want to try out a sweet version, then this would be the time to sprinkle sugar on it, fill it up with your favourite jam and glaze the top…
Virgin olive oil, semi-dry tomato and FISAN Acorn-Fed Gran Reserva Ham
In as far as the extra virgin olive oil is concerned, our advice is to use a few drops of mild-flavoured olive oil that does not “compete” with the aromas that accompany the oleic acid of the fat of a FISAN Gran Reserva Ham.
The semi-dried tomato is obtained by putting a nicely ripened tomato in a low-moderate temperature oven for a couple of hours. The temperature will vary depending on how you wish to prepare it for its stint in the oven. If you scald the tomato and then peel it, the ideal temperature would be about 120º C. If you cut it into wedges, then a temperature of 90º C will suffice. You can adjust the exact point of the roasted tomato to your own taste by extending or shortening its oven time. However, the really crucial point is allowing the tomato to rest for a couple of hours before using it.
Finally, an envelope of hand-sliced FISAN Acorn-Fed Gran Reserva Ham will offer you the perfect slices to complete this recipe without any additional work.
Smoking is very easy with a glass domed bell just like the one that can be seen in this post and with a smoking gun or kitchen “smoking pipe”, although it is possible that not all of us have one on hand.
If you do have one available, then the main trick is to use “Quercus” genus (cork oak, Holm oak, common oak) wood shavings with a touch of aroma. As we were saying, we do not wish to reveal all the secrets of Ramón Freixa’s recipe, although we can indeed offer a few suggestions in that pertaining to the addition of a “touch of herbs” such as rosemary or thyme combined with the shavings. Also, fruit of the fusion between culinary cultures, currently it is quite frequent to use green tea to aromatize smoked foods.
Open your minds and explore new paths. Indeed however, while you practice smoking at the beginning make sure to leave the windows open and the overhead range hood on to eliminate the smoke from your first attempts.
Those of you who do not have a smoking gun handy can try out a very simple traditional technique. Find a thin branch of a “Quercus” genus oak and allow it to infuse in a cool liquid all night with some herbs, or some green tea, or cinnamon. (Let your imagination go wild). Once the branch has dried, use it as if it was an incense stick. Light one end, blow out the flame and introduce it, while still smoking, under the glass dome for a few seconds. The time to remove the stick is when the dome is full of smoke.
Of course there are other ways to undertake this new way of enjoying the best Ibérico flavour. More complex ways, easier ways… But, as mentioned above, our intention is merely to give rise to your curiosity and offer tips to renovate the classic ways in which Ibérico products are enjoyed. So, are you ready?