Saturday, February 6, 2010

gluten free lady fingers - test run

What is your favorite dessert?
I guess it would have to be tiramisu.
Really? Tiramisu?

Tiramisu is something I have never really liked. I tend to be a fruit dessert person. I usually spend most of my time trying to recreate my favorites, but I think it is fun to surprise someone with a favorite food for almost no reason... v-day is just around the corner. Valentines Day seems sort of silly to me - St. Valentine died, I am not really sure how we went from bloody death to flowers and candies, but I love an in-the-kitchen challenge. So here is my first attempt at making lady fingers, the foundation of any tiramisu.

Trial run of lady fingers
2 tbsp millet flour
2 1/2 tbsp corn starch
1 tbsp tapioca flour
1 tbsp potato starch
1 tsp baking powder baking powder
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
pinch sea salt
2 eggs, separated
1/4 + 1/2tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla

  1. Line one jellyroll baking sheets with either parchment paper or two silpats and set aside. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar to the ribbon and then stir in the vanilla. Beat the egg whites until stiff, add the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar and whisk for about 30 seconds more, making sure the egg whites cast off a nice glossy sheen.
  3. In three separate batches, sprinkle the sifted dry ingredients over the egg whites and gently fold in. Repeat with the egg yolk mixture. Spoon your batter into a pastry bag fitted with a 1” plain pastry tip.
  4. Pipe fingers that are about 4 ½ inches long. Dust the tops with confectioners’ sugar and bake for 20 minutes or until the ladyfingers are a pale copper color and firm on the outside and soft on the inside. (I didn't have any powdered sugar, so I skipped it)
  5. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Makes 1 dozen ladyfingers.
Gluten free lady finger recipe that I halved for a test run and modified.

My biggest worry is that they would become gummy once they were soaked in espresso, which is why I decreased the tapioca starch. They browned much faster than I expected, you can see that at 14 minutes they were over-done (but the oven has been on the fritz, so I am not sure what is to blame).
I test soaked one in coffee and it held up well and didn't get gummy, but I should have sifted the mixture because it was a little gritty. That or there is too much sugar and not all of it dissolved in the egg yolks. I really think they are too sweet, but maybe they need to be to contrast the marscarpone and espresso. I am going to make others eat them and tell me what they think.

Verdict - too gritty. I think the sugar didn't completely dissolve in the egg yolks. They are also really eggy. Maybe more flours?

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