one of my main grudges with pastry is that because 90% of what goes on the plate is something manufactured or manipulated there seems to be a lack of nature in the finished dish. i have never really liked using molds or cutting things in perfect cubes. nature doesn't make perfect cubes or triangles. Albert Adria has a new wonderful book where he mimics scenes in nature with his dishes. unlike sugar or chocolate work where these items are molded into shapes and forms and used primarely for garnish, Albert makes use of only integral components of the dish to trick the eye into seeing something of natures' making. there are no garnishes, no inedible flourishes. the rule of function over form. in thinking that way, how can dessert no longer be distracted by what form it is to take and only by the flavors and textures presented.
here is a chocolate-praline mousse, scooped and rolled into a chocolate-praline crumble made using maltodextrin, passion fruit ice cream and gel give an acidic note while roasted pear gives an earthy tone. microwave chocolate cake adds some texture and fresh torn mint leaves give a cleansing finish.


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