Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The coming and going of Pre-Valentine's Day Dinner

Valentine's Day is a day to celebrate the ones you love, and what better way than to go to dinner with one's parents and boyfriend. It was dinner in Haven. Read more to learn about what kinds of desserts I ate there.


Valentine’s Day came and went. Dinner reservations were off the charts even with the current economic issues, but everyone deserves a nice night out once in a while, right?

I had the chance for such a night with my family and boyfriend. We didn’t go out on Valentine’s Day, instead had a lovely dinner at Haven in Pleasantville. One of the top rated restaurants in Westchester County.

After a delicious dinner of steak for the men, and duck and lamb for my mother and me respectively we all decided to split two desserts since we were nearly stuffed like your turkeys on Thanksgiving Day (of all the clichés). I was able to choose the first, where my first choice immediately was a passion fruit crème brûlée. The second choice was my father’s of a banana split with a caramel sauce and hazelnut ice cream.

Let’s break down the crème brûlée first. Now crème brûlée is a dessert consisting of custard (the crème part) and a burnt sugar top (the brûlée part). The custard usually consists of egg yolks, cream, sugar, and vanilla bean (sometimes people will use vanilla extract if they do not wish to spend the extra money on the bean). This is then poured into ramekins and then baked. Afterwards it is cooled and when ready to be served sugar is sprinkled on top and using either a blowtorch or the broil setting on your oven the sugar is caramelized. Because of the thickness of the cream, the custard can occasionally turn out to seem kind of heavy. This was definitely not the case with the passion fruit crème brûlée. I don’t see passion fruit used too often in baking or cooking, so I was slightly surprised to see this added ingredient in one of my more loved desserts. Though, it was the best part. The passion fruit wasn’t actually present in bits and pieces, but more of in an extract form. It added a slight tang to the crème brûlée keeping it from being too sweet, as well as making it lighter. Toped with a strawberry and two blackberries, on my scale, this tasty treat deserves a 10/10 for originality and unusual taste.

On ward to the banana split. I am not quite the fan of banana splits because of the way I’ve had them prepared before with whipped cream and chocolate. This banana split came with only the whipped cream, as a side. The banana had a delicious, what seemed to taste like, hazelnut ice cream, which a sweet and not sticky almost caramel-like sauce poured over it.  Again topped with the signature strawberry and two blackberries. This dessert also gets a 9/10 mostly for the sauce and ice cream and originality, but the banana was slightly soft which was probably intention as it seemed baked, but it seemed to take away from the sauce and ice cream as opposed to give more to the taste.

Tomorrow I shall discuss actual Valentine's Day dinner.

Also, to check out haven here is the website!

Keep eating sweetly!

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