Nectarine Custard Cake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Cream sugar, butter and lemon zest together. Add flour then egg yolks and slowly add roasted nectarine paste and milk in thin stream to prevent lumps and/or mix to form a paste. Whip egg whites to soft peaks and carefully fold into above mixture using a rubber spatula. Pour mixture into muffin tins or similar size ceramic dishes that have been brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with granulated sugar and bake in a water bath for approximately 35 minutes at 325 degrees F. Unmold while still warm, let cool then set in refrigerator. (See Cook's Note)
Nectarine Carpaccio: Bring water, sugar, and scraped vanilla bean seeds to a boil, remove from heat, and let cool to body temperature. Shave nectarine using a mandolin or other similar tool and place in the cooled syrup. Let sit for approximately 2 to 4 hours.
Lavender Honey Brulee: Bring milk, cream, and scraped vanilla seeds to a boil. Mix yolks and honey with a whisk. Add hot liquid slowly at first to avoid cooking the yolks. Cook the mixture until temperature reaches 185 degrees F. Immediately strain into a clean bowl and (sprinkle gelatin in 1/2 ounce of cold water and let it sit until gel is formed), add gelatin then white chocolate. Cool quickly over an iced water bath then pour into an 8-inch square container. Set in refrigerator.
Citrus Cracker Dough rounds: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Sift together flour and confectioners' sugar. Make a well and add in the egg and orange zest. Mix until a dough forms. Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. Roll out on board until you can see through the dough. Using different size round cutters, make a unique design. Place on aluminium foil that you have crushed up and let dry. Bake at 325 degrees F. until it is golden. Let rest until cool.
Assembly and Suggested Serving: Place the Nectarine Custard Cake off center in dish. Cut the brulee into rounds that are the same size of the cake. Sprinkle top of the brulee with granulated sugar and with blowtorch caramelize the sugar. Place on top of the custard cake. Put a few slices of drained nectarine carpaccio on top of the brulee and place citrus crackers up against the Nectarine Custard Cake. Garnish with fresh lavender.
The paste is obtained by roasting 2 medium size nectarines (halved, pitted, and placed, cavity side down, on a silicon or parchment paper lined tray) in a 350 degree F. oven for approximately one hour or until very soft. The fruits are then blended in a food processor to a puree consistency.
Propane gas torches are highly flammable and should be kept away from heat, open flame and prolonged exposure to sunlight. They should be used only in well-ventilated areas. Follow torch manufacturer's instructions for use.
Copyright 2001 Dominique and Cindy Duby