Eating & Drinking

FROM THE PRINT EDITION: Deconstructing a Restaurant E18hteen favourite

THE DISH: The genius of  Restaurant E18hteen’s Broken Truffle dessert

By Shawna Wagman

When Restaurant E18hteen pastry chef Lia Turcotte discovered Olivia, a local producer of organic chocolate, she knew she wanted to feature the artisan confection on her dessert menu. She decided to emphasize the strong, rich flavour of the ultra-dark 78 percent chocolate by playing with a variety of sweeter sides to balance it. It’s an inversion of logic that tends to reign in the dessert realm: here the main event is the least sweet element on the plate. Compared with the vanilla gelato, marshmallow brûlée, coffee icing, and crabapple jelly, the “just set” slab of butter-and-egg-infused dark chocolate is almost savoury. Lovers of bold, bitter, dark chocolate will think they’ve died and gone to heaven.

Broken Truffle dessert. Photography by photoluxstudio.com - Christian Lalonde
Broken Truffle dessert. Photography by photoluxstudio.com - Christian Lalonde

1. Torched homemade marshmallow “fluff” adds sticky, sweet fun to serious chocolate drama

2. Unlike traditional truffle ganache, there is no cream. Instead, eggs and sugar are whipped into a frothy cloud-like sabayon and folded into melted chocolate with butter. Extra dark cocoa is then added. It spends five minutes in the oven until just set.

3. Silky homemade crabapple jelly comes from a big batch made by Turcotte in 2008

4. Butter and sugar are whipped with coffee into a thick granular icing

5. Garnished with lemon balm

6. Vanilla gelato with cocoa cookie crumble offers a cool, crunchy contrast of texture and temperature