I love the combination of dark Morello cherries and balsamic vinegar. Since I have balsamic cherry vinegar from Bellindora on hand, I thought I would use the pairing in a dish. I made cherry vol au vent drizzled with Bellindora balsamic cherry chocolate sauce. If you’ve had balsamic syrup with fruits in the past, you will certainly love this uncommon flavoring as the balsamic cherry vinegar brings out the flavor of the sweet cherries.
The vol au vent consists of a puff pastry cup that is formed using two different sizes of cookie cutters. I filled it with homemade dark Morel ice cream. As you can see from the photo, I should have been more patient and waited for the ice cream to harden a bit in the freezer and not transfer the churned cherry ice cream directly from the ice cream machine to the cooled puff pastry. Live and learn…
1. Info for Vol au Vent Filled with Cherry Ice Cream
- Cook Time: 50 min
- Total Time: 1 hr 30 min
- Servings: 8
- Calories: 330 kcal
2. Ingredients for Vol au Vent Filled with Cherry Ice Cream
- 1 cup + 1 tablespoon whole milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 5 tablespoons granulated sugar, to taste
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 4 (5 x 5″) squares puff pastry dough
- 4 tablespoons balsamic cherry vinegar
- 4 tablespoons semi-sweet dark chocolate, finely chopped
3.1 For the cherry ice cream
Place 6 ounces cherries and 1 tablespoon sugar in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped.
Place the milk, heavy cream and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a near boil. While waiting for the milk to boil, you have to be very careful because it can burn fast.
In a stainless-steel mixing bowl, using an electric handheld mixer, whisk the egg yolks with the remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar until the texture thickens. Make a “double boiler” (a pot filled with hot water, covered with a piece of cloth) and place the bowl filled with whisked eggs on top. Slowly pour in the milk so that the eggs don’t curdle and continue whisking the eggs at full speed for about 3-4 minutes. Check the temperature of the eggs; they should feel warm to the touch. Remove from the double boiler. Make sure the eggs are whisked for a long time, so the custard doesn’t taste eggy and the texture is light and airy.
Note: Remember, the ice cream mixture should be slightly too sweet to your taste before placing it in the ice cream machine because it will taste less sweet when it’s frozen.
Transfer the mixture back to the deep sauce pan. Cook for about 8 minutes until the custard thickens, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Turn off the heat and add vanilla extract and salt. Stir well. Strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl to remove any solids. Add the chopped cherries and stir well.
Transfer the custard to a bowl. Place the bowl into an ice bath. When the cream is cool completely, cover with a piece of plastic wrap; make sure the plastic wrap is directly in contact with the custard to keep it from forming a skin. Let it cool completely and transfer to the refrigerator.
To check if the mixture is ready to be churned, make sure the ice cream mixture is as cold as possible before you transfer it to the machine; the temperature of the liquid shouldn’t exceed 45°F.
Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker canister and let the machine do its magic. The consistency will be firm but still soft-serve. Transfer to the freezer while preparing the pastry shells.
3.2 For the egg wash
Combine the beaten egg with 1 tablespoon milk. Stir well.
3.3 Forming the pastry shells
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
I used 2 cookie cutters. Cut 16 2½”-diameter rounds with the puff pastry squares (4 per squares). Reserve half the amount of rounds. Using a smaller-sized cookie cutter, cut out 8 2″-diameter holes in the center of the reserved rounds.
Place the 8 large rounds onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Use a silicone brush to spread a thin layer of egg wash around the edge of the rounds and on the rest of the hollowed rounds. Place the hollowed rounds on top of the full disks (as the base of the pastry) on the baking sheet. Prick the center with a fork. Brush the top with more egg wash and place it in the freezer for about 15 minutes. Brush the top one more time with egg wash.
Bake for 12 minutes at 350°F. The texture of the puff pastry should be very flaky.
Allow to cool completely.
3.4 For the balsamic syrup
In a small saucepan, bring the balsamic vinegar to a boil and let simmer for about 5 minutes. Decrease the heat to low and add the chocolate, stirring constantly until fully melted.
3.5 Assemblly time
Fill each pastry cup with a small scoop of cherry ice cream and immediately drizzle with the balsamic chocolate sauce.
4. Tips and advices:
- I usually add a little salt to most desserts. It brings out the flavor and will enhance the taste of your sweets.
- I used Bellindora balsamic cherry vinegar.
- After the ice cream is churned. It’s preferable to transfer the ice cream into an airtight container and let it harden in the freezer for at least 2 hours or let it rest overnight.