Floral Flavours with Tom Aikens

To help celebrate #VirtualBelgraviainBloom, Tom Aikens talks us through some of his favourite floral recipes and how to recreate them. Read on to learn Tom’s secret to the perfect Crème Caramel with Whiskey and Elderflower, Poached Strawberries with Elderflower plus a guide to floral Kombucha making from home.
 

#VirtualBelgraviainBloom has seen a host of brands who call Belgravia home, put together some amazing videos and guides to how to arrange, smell, enjoy and cook with flowers throughout the week on @Belgravia_LDN. Tom Aikens’ Belgravia restaurant Muse is an experience-led fine dining restaurant in an intimate 25-cover converted mews house. The menus at Muse have been inspired by nostalgia and the pivotal moments and key people from Tom’s personal life and career. Look to IGTV on @Belgravia_LDN to watch Tom (and his little helpers!) create delicious Crème Caramel with Whiskey and Elderflower and read on to see the recipes and ingredients list in full.

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CRÈME CARAMEL WITH ELDERFLOWER AND A LITTLE WHISKEY
MAKES 10 PORTIONS @ 80G

 
THE CARAMEL
200g caster sugar
80g water
 
Bring all to a quick boil and cook to achieve a dark caramel at 180c.
 
180g condensed milk
500g evaporated milk
1 vanilla pod, split & scraped
1 peeled lemon
A few heads of elderflower
6 yolks
50ml milk
20ml of whiskey (I used the English whiskey company)
 
Place the evaporated and condensed milk as well as normal milk into a pan with the vanilla pod, lemon peel and the elderflower. Bring to a simmer, then leave to cool for up to an hour with clingfilm over the top. Whisk the egg yolks and add the milk infusion once cooled before passing through a fine sieve. Once the caramel has been poured into the tin cases and set, add 80g of the above mixture to each and cook in a deep dish filled with hot water or bain-marie, up to the level line of the caramel and cook at 80c for approx 45 minutes. (They should have a slight wobble in the middle whilst in the bain-marie) Cool at room temperature, then chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours before they are eaten.
 
ASSEMBLY
Dip a knife into simmering water and run it around the edge of the foil dish. Turn it upside down onto the plate and prick the top with a small knife by inserting it through the top and then it will drop down. Feel free to add the poached strawberries to this.

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POACHED STRAWBERRIES WITH ELDERFLOWER
500g Hulled strawberries (the tops taken off)
600g water
200g caster sugar
Peel of 1 lemon
1 vanilla pod (if you have it)
2-3 sprigs basil
2-3 sprigs thyme
Few heads of picked elderflower
 
Bring all the above to a simmer and place the strawberries into a bowl. Pour over the hot simmering liquid, clingfilm and leave to cool. Place in the fridge for a day before using. 
 
KOMBUCHA

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KOMBUCHA BASE
3 litres of water             
300g Sugar
 
Simmer the above, then turn off and add the tea, leaving to infuse for 2.5 minutes then pass through a fine sieve and cool completely.
 
Using 3 different White Teas at 3g each = 9g
Add the scoby and its liquid. You then need to leave this covered with a piece of muslin and rubber band for 3-5 days at room temperature, ideally between 15c-22c. This will slowly ferment and feed off the sugars. The longer you leave it the more acidic it will become. The scoby should be sitting at the top. After you have let it ferment to the required taste, strain it and start the second fermentation, by adding the flavouring.
If you are making more Kombucha you just repeat the process as above.
 
LEMON AND GINGER KOMBUCHA
2 x Lemon peel
60g Ginger chopped     
2.5 litres of Kombucha base     
2 Sticks of lemon grass, bashed and chopped
 
PINEAPPLE & ELDERFLOWER
Dried skin of 1 pineapple (Dry out the skin in the oven at 80c for 3hrs, then leave to cool)
8 heads of fresh elderflower, washed in cold water
4 sprigs of fresh basil
A few sprigs of flowering thyme
2.5 litres of Kombucha base
 
Place the above altogether in a clean Kilner jar and leave for 24 hrs to infuse before straining. Discard the lemon & ginger. Bottle the liquid in clip top bottles and leave them at room temp to build up the gas. This will take between 24-36 hours, depending on how much fizz you want or not. You may need to burp the bottle in this time if the build-up of gas gets too much.  You then place into the fridge to stop the fermentation and its then ready to drink as soon as its chilled.
 
Learn more about Muse by Tom Aikens here.
 
38 Groom Place
Belgravia
London
SW1X 7BA

info@musebytomaikens.co.uk