[Michel BRAS Recipe] Chestnut Crust

This recipe is reminiscent of the fantastic Bras “Capucin”- a crispy and flavorful crust that highlights its contents and makes whatever filling you choose irresistible due to the contrast in textures and flavors. A drop of rum, and chestnut flour rolled into a shape of your choosing and flavored according to your mood.

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Rum, a gift from sunny islands, brings a bit of fire to the Aubrac chestnut. It perfectly matches the taste of vanilla to bring a creole touch to our sweet treats. I love combining distant delights, be it sugar or spice, with the tougher beauty of our Aubrac region. A little rum with this chestnut-based recipe will no doubt enhance the warmth of a Chistmas evening by the fireplace. 

Tools : a mixer, cooking paper, a cooking brush, a whisk, a stencil.
Stencil : create your own stencil using a piece of a carton or linoleum and cut out shapes 10cm (4 inchies) X 10cm (4 inches) square to make cones or cigars, or rectangular shapes for a millefeuille. You can make circles, triangles…whatever you wish.

Ingredients for 30 pieces or cones:
30g chestnut flour (1/4 cup)
100g sugar (7/8 cup)
100g eggwhite (about 2 big or 3 small eggs)
30g butter (1/8 cup)
50g almond powder (2 oz)

Preparation :
Put the chestnut flour in a bowl and mix with sugar and almond powder, add the butter and then the eggwhites.

Put a cooking paper sheet over the baking pan, then the stencil over it, and spread the dough using a brush, to fill in the geometric holes. It should just be thick enough to hold as one piece, but thin enough to be folded easily.
Remove the stencil, and bake in the oven at 180 C (350F) for 6-7 mn, till you see a slight golden color. Do not let it brown too much as i twill harden and be hard to fold.

Remove from the oven, detach them gently without breaking them.
To produce a cone shaped wrap, pick two opposite tips of the square, fold into a cone by sliding one side into the other. Do it gently but quickly, while they’re still warm and supple, as they will quickly harden and be impossible to fold.

You can also roll it around a 1 cm diameter cylinder, to produce empty cigars to be filled with chestnut cream, vanilla and chestnut « Turinois » (see next recipe ) with chocolate sauce, vanilla ice cream with marrons glacés pieces, whipped cream, or anything you’d like !

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