On the 7th Day of Christmas SousVide Supreme gave to me… 7 delicate floating meringue
swans, a-swimming in a Christmas-spiced crème Anglaise!
Courtesy of SousVide Supreme Culinary Specialist, Sophie
Serves 6 or 7 (with swans to spare)
For the crème Anglaise (custard)
• 5 egg yolks
• 1 cup (240 ml) milk
• 1 cup (240ml) cream
• 5 tablespoons (75g) sugar
• 1/8 teaspoon (0.5ml) cinnamon powder
• 1/8 teaspoon (0.5ml) ginger powder
• Sprinkle of freshly grated nutmeg
For the caramel (swan necks, wings, and tails)
• 3 tablespoons (45g) sugar
• For the floating swans (meringue)
• 4 egg whites
• 7 tablespoons (105g) sugar
For the poaching liquid
• 2 cups (480 ml) water
• 1 cup (240 ml) milk
• 1 tablespoon (15g) sugar
For the custard
2. Put the egg yolks, milk, cream, sugar and spices into a food processor
(or whisk together
in a bowl). Pulse or whisk just enough to combine and form a smooth yellow custard
mixture. Do not over mix.
. (It is a large amount of liquid and cooks more evenly in two pouches.)
4. Use the displacement method (Archimedes’ principle) to remove the air and zip the seals
closed; submerge the pouches in the water bath to cook for 15 minutes.
5. Remove the pouches from the water bath and quick chill them, submerged in ice water
(half ice/half water) for 15 minutes and then refrigerate
6. For the caramel shapes:
7. Put the sugar into a heavy bottomed pan and melt it over medium heat. Don’t stir the
sugar syrup, but you can gently swirl it from the side to side as it heats.
8. Allow the sugar syrup to cook and become a golden caramel color and as soon as it has,
take the pan off the heat.
9. Allow the caramel to cool for a minute or two, then carefully pour it onto a sheet of
parchment paper. You can create swirls and different designs (making swan necks or
wings or tail feathers) as you pour the caramel. Leave the caramel pieces to cool and
For the floating swan meringue
1. Using a stand or hand mixer, beat the egg whites until foamy. With the motor still
running, gradually add the sugar, about a tablespoon at a time. When all the sugar is
mixed in, continue to beat the egg whites until they form stiff shiny peaks.
2. In a large heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, combine the water, milk and
sugar and cook until the sugar has fully dissolved. Keep the liquid over a low to medium
heat, but do not let it boil.
3. Using two large serving spoons, shape the meringue (egg whites) into large quenelles.
(Take a spoon of the meringue, then transfer it into the other spoon, and continue to
alternate between the spoons until you have a smooth oval of meringue.)
4. As you complete the shaped quenelles, carefully lower each one into the hot poaching
liquid. Work in batches (about 4 at a time) to prevent overcrowding.
5. Let them poach gently for about 4 minutes, then carefully turn them and poach them for
about 4 minutes on the other side.
6. Once the quenelles are cooked, transfer them gently to a wire rack to drain.
7. Continue to form and cook the rest of the quenelles. This mixture should make about 14
For the Floating Swans
1. Remove the crème Anglaise from the refrigerator and divide it among 6 or 7 serving
dishes or into one large serving bowl.
2. Decorate the swan bodies with the caramel necks, tails and wings, before gently floating
them on the crème Anglaise.
3. Serve straight away.