HOTEL IMPERIAL SWEET CHEESE DUMPLINGS
Source: Chef Stefan Hierzer, Hotel Imperial, Vienna, Austria
Stefan Hierzer pipes a beautiful swirled chocolate design on the plates, then fills the large spaces in the swirl with strawberry purÃ©e, before he even starts adding the dumplings. These cheese dumplings are boiled in rum-scented water, then rolled in crunchy butter-sautÃ©ed breadcrumbs and dusted with confectioners’ sugar.
1 C. fresh strawberries, hulled
1/4 C. confectioners’ sugar
2 T. (1/4 stick) unsalted butter
1 C. dried fine breadcrumbs
1/4 C. granulated sugar
2 C. fresh bread cubes
1 1/4 C. sweet (farmer’s) cheese (may substitute ricotta)
1/2 tsp. lemon zest
1/2 tsp. orange zest
1 vanilla bean
Pinch of salt
1/4 C. granulated sugar
1/2 C. rum
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
12 to 16 blueberries
4 strawberries, halved
12 to 16 raspberries
4 mint leaves
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
To make the purÃ©e: Combine the strawberries and sugar in a food processor or blender and purÃ©e. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve and set aside.
To make the coating: Melt the butter in a medium sautÃ© pan and stir in the breadcrumbs and sugar. SautÃ© until golden and crispy. Set aside in a shallow bowl or plate.
To make the dumplings: In a large bowl, mix the bread cubes, cheese and zests. Split the vanilla bean and scrape the tiny seeds into the mixture; discard the pod (or place in granulated sugar to make vanilla sugar). With a wooden spoon, stir in the egg, pinch of salt and sugar. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1/2 cup rum. Form the dumpling mixture into 2-inch balls. Drop the dumplings into the boiling water and cook 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on towels.
To serve: Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over barely simmering water. Put into a pastry bag fitted with a very small plain tip, or put into a small plastic bag and snip a tiny hole in one corner. Pipe a design on each of four dessert plates, incorporating two large circles in the design. Let set for 1 minute. With the tip of a spoon, fill the circles with strawberry purÃ©e. Roll the dumplings in the coating mixture and place two or three dumplings on each plate. Garnish each plate with a few blueberries, one split strawberry and a few raspberries, topped with a mint leaf.
Dust the dumplings with confectioners’ sugar.