Triangular coconut tuiles are stacked with exotic fruit puree to make dazzling tropical napoleons. Chef Mello completes the theme with scattered fresh tropical fruits around the napoleons, and glazed strawberries and star fruit on top.
- Coconut Tuile
- Confectioner’s Sugar - 1-1/2 cups
- Coconut - 2 cups unsweetened, dried, shredded
- Unsalted Butter - 1/2 tablespoon, melted
- Eggs - 4 large
- Water - 4 cups
- Sugar - 2/3 cup
- Zest of 2 limes
- Zest of 2 oranges
- Whole Cloves - 1
- Cinnamon Stick - 1/2
- Fresh Ginger - 3 tablespoons, grated
- Vanilla bean - 1, split
- Black peppercorns - 5
- Exotic Puree
- Pineapple Puree - 1/2 cup
- Banana Puree - 1/2 cup
- Passion fruit puree - 1/2 cup
- Mango puree - 1/2 cup
- Strawberry Puree - 1/2 cup
- Exotic Mousse
- Exotic puree (above)
- Mascarpone Cheese - 14 ounces
- Confectioner’s Sugar - 1-1/4 cups
- Caramel Fruit Garnishes
- Sugar - 3/4 cup
- Water - 1/4 cup
- Star Fruit - 1, cut in thin circles
- Strawberries - 8, hulls left on
- Strawberries - 1 pint, hulled and halved lengthwise
- Raspberries - 1 pint
- Kiwis - 3, peeled and cut into small dice
- Mango - 1, peeled and cut into small dice
- Cape gooseberries - 1/2 pint
- Star Fruit - 1, peeled and cut into very thin stars
- Guava - 1, peeled and cut into small dice
- Confectioner’s sugar for dusting
To make the tuiles: Cut a 4-inch-by5-inch-by-5-inch triangle in 1/8-inch-thick sheet of cardboard or plastic to make a stencil. Trim the outside perimeter to a 1/2-inch strip, leaving a tab on one edge to make it easier to lift. Preheat the oven to 300 F. Line 2 baking sheets with silicone liners or parchment paper. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or by hand, mix the confectioner’s sugar and dried coconut at low speed until combined. Add the melted butter and blend. Add the eggs and blend into a batter. Place the stencil on a prepared sheet and spread a thin layer of batter inside the stencil with an offset spatula. Lift the stencil and repeat, making at least 24 triangles (if you can fit extras on the pan, it is always good to allow for breakage). Bake 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool.
To make the syrup: Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and cover; set aside for 10 minutes. Strain into a bowl. Press plastic wrap on the surface and refrigerate.
To make the puree: Combine all fruit purees and strain through a sieve.
To make the mousse: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the mascarpone and confectioner’s sugar until smooth. Beat in the exotic puree. Press plastic wrap on the surface and chill in the refrigerator.
To make the caramel decorations: Line 2 baking sheets with a silicone liner or parchment paper. Combine the sugar and water in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil without stirring; swirl the pan to encourage melting. Brush down the sides with a damp brush to remove any crystals which form. Boil without stirring until the syrup turns a golden amber color, 350 F. Immediately set the pan in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Dip the fruit in the caramel and lay on the prepared baking sheets to cool. If the caramel hardens, warm it slightly so that it liquefies again. When all the fruit has been dipped, make a cone of parchment paper and snip a tiny hole at the tip. Fill with caramel and pipe 6 lacy circles on the prepared pan. Set aside to harden.
To assemble: Put the mousse in a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch fluted tip. Place a coconut tuile in the center of each plate and pipe dots of mousse along each side. Position another tuile on top and pipe more dots of mousse along each side. Repeat this again twice, making four layers ending with a tuile. Arrange some of the diced fruit around each dish and drizzle with syrup. Moisten the coated fruit with a little of the syrup and position on the top of each napoleon. Dust with confectioner’s sugar.