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Craig Strong combines classic French techniques with modern ones for this popular amuse-bouche.
He starts by making classic pommes soufflés by first frying quarter-inch thick potato slices in 325° Fahrenheit oil for exactly one minute, and then moving them to 375° Fahrenheit oil until the slices puff up.
Then he makes a potato purée by simmering peeled, diced potatoes in equal amounts of heavy cream andstock, and then pulsing them in a blender until they’re smooth.
Next, he measures one liter of the purée and puts it in a saucepan with 2 grams each of high-acyl and low-acyl gellan gum and slowly brings it to a boil. He purées the mixture again and strains it through a fine sieve.
He makes the purée into a foam by pouring it into a charged whipped cream canister and spraying it into a piping bag. He pokes a small hole in each of the pommes soufflées and fills them with the foam.
He garnishes the potatoes with crème fraîche, chives and bacon powder. The powder is made by slowly baking bacon at around 200° Fahrenheit until very crispy — three to four hours — drying it well with paper towels, chopping it finely into a powder, and then drying it again with paper towels.
The potato skins are sent out as an amuse bouche or can be ordered as hors d’oeuvres. Four hors d’oeuvre are $25, while six cost $35.