Chefs at Constance Halaveli scoop up medals at Hotel Asia 2011

Our chefs at Constance Halaveli, Maldives, have won a remarkable 14 medals at Hotel Asia 2011 Culinary Challenge. The event took place in Male, Maldives from 14-16 July.

Our winning team at Hotel Asia 2011

Our winning team at Hotel Asia 2011

Executive Chef at Constance Halaveli,  Glen Cooper doesn’t do things by half. When he decided to line up his team for the most important culinary competition in the Maldives, he had one clear goal in mind – to make a strong impression.

 The results speak for themselves:

  • 5 Gold Medals
  • 3 Silver Medals
  • 5 Bronze Medals
  • 1 Merit Award in carving
  • 1st Overall in Live Hot Cooking Beef (out of 27 entries)
  • 2nd Overall in Live Hot Cooking Poultry (out of 22 entries)
  • 2nd Overall in Live Hot Appetizers (out of 25 entries)
  • 3rd Overall in Live Plated Desserts (out of 36 entries)

Our chefs who made up the team were Saroj, Upul, Pradeep, Sheran, Durga, Siyaful, Nuwan #1, Nuwan #2 and Janaka.

Congratulations and well done boys!

Recipe: Dark chocolate tart served warm with ginger milk foam

Try this delicious dessert from the Constance kitchen – it’s a chocoholic delight, and the ginger milk foam will wow your dinner guests.

Ginger root

Fiery ginger root

Serves 4
Preparation time:
1 hour
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Steeping time: 20 minutes
Refrigerating time: 2 and a half hours

Ingredients:

For the pâte sucrée
75g soft butter
40g icing sugar
pinch of salt
1 egg
125g flour

For the ginger milk foam
15g fresh ginger
25cl milk
40g sugar
2 leaves gelatin

For the chocolate moelleux
100g good quality plain chocolate
80g butter + some for spreading in tins
2 eggs
80g sugar
20g sifted plain flour
1tsp baking powder
10g powdered cocoa

1. Make the pâte sucrée: in a large bowl, mix the butter, icing sugar, salt and egg until smooth. Add flour, mix well, cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. Make the ginger milk: scrape the ginger with a knife, wash it and dice if finely. Scald the milk with the sugar and ginger, take off the heat, cover and let rest for 20 minutes.

3. In a bowl, soak the gelatine in very cold water until soft.

4. Pour the ginger milk through a fine sieve. While it’s still hot, add the drained gelatin. Cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for 1 hour. The ginger milk should set like a custard.

5. Make the chocolate moelleux: chop the chocolate, put it in a bowl and melt it in a microwave oven for 10 minutes at low temperature. Add the butter and melt for 5 more minutes. Whisk eggs and sugar and add them to the chocolate. Sift the flour with the baking powder and the cocoa powder, add them to the previous mixture, mixing with a spatula. Cover with clingfilm, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

6. Preheat oven to 140ºC. Make the tartlets.

7. Roll out the dough (pâte sucrée) and put it in lightly buttered tartlet tins. Prick the dough with a fork to prevent it from puffing up in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes. Let cool.

8. Use a tablespoon to divide the moelleux batter into the tartlet crusts. Bake again for 12 minutes, raising the oven temperature to 180ºC. Do not overcook – the middle should still be runny.

9. Meanwhile, in a blender, emulsify the ginger milk with 2 or 3 ice cubes. It should dobule in bulk and be cool and light. Divide the foamy ginger milk into small glasses and serve with warm tartlets.

Recipe: Pineapple and watermelon sandwich with cinnamon French toast

Liven up breakfast time with this easy and tasty recipe from Constance Le Prince Maurice in the Indian Ocean.
Pineapple and watermelon sandwich with cinnamon French toast

Pineapple and watermelon sandwich with cinnamon French toast

Serves 4
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:
2 medium sized pineapples
1kg watermelon
12 basil leaves

For the cinnamon French toast:
4 slices white bread
2 eggs
40g sugar
1 pinch cinnamon powder
25cl whole milk
80g butter

For the citrus jus
1 orange
1 grapefruit
20g sugar

1. Peel the pineapple and watermelon. Cut each fruit lengthwise into 8 5mm thick slices. Lay these on top of each other in the following order:

  • 1 slice of pineapple
  • 1 basil leaf
  • 1 slice of watermelon

Repeat this twice until you have a 3 tiers in your sandwich. Make 4 other fruit sandwiches in the same way. Trim each one into a neat square and then cut each square into 2 triangles so you have 8 triangular sandwiches. Secure each triangle by using a small wooden skewer into it.

2. Make the citrus jus: halve each citrus fruit, squeeze them and mix their juice with the sugar. Boil down by half, and set aside.

3. Make the cinnamon French toast: break the eggs into a bowl, whisk in the sugar, cinnamon and milk.

4. On a low heat, melt a little butter in a large frying pan. Dip the bread slices into the egg batter, lay them into the pan and fry them gently until lightly golden.

5. On each plate, put 1 slice of French toast and 2 triangular sandwiches. Sprinkle with citrus jus and serve while the French toast is warm.

Let us know how you get on, and send us your comments and pictures of your own fruit sandwich and cinnamon toast. You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

You can also purchase the Constance Prince Maurice recipe book that contains this recipe and 50 more from our online store.

The giant pineapples of Madagascar

At our Constance Tsarabanjina Lodge in Madagascar, we cook with mainly local produce to provide the freshest ingredients to our guests.

Woman holding a giant pineapple from Madagascar

Giant pineapples in Madagascar can weigh up to 5kg

The North of the country is rich in amazing fruits and vegetables. No pesticides or chemical fertilizers are used – it’s nature at its very best.

If you head to the market in Nosy Bé, you’ll be struck not only by the abundance of fruit and vegetables but also by the size of everything on offer.

One of the most incredible sights are the giant pineapples. They come from the North-Western region of Sakatia or Marovato where the soil is particularly hot and humid. Here, the pineapples can grow up to whopping 5 kg.

Here are two great ways to enjoy the amazing flavours of pineapple:

  • Peel and cut the pineapple into wedges, then sprinkle with dried chilli flakes and salt crystals.
  • Peel and thinkly slice the pineapple, baste with a light vanilla syrup and serve with a scoop of lemongrass sorbet.

Simple, fresh and tasty.

Recipe: fromage blanc with strawberries and pumpkin seeds

Enjoy this summer’s bumper crop of strawberries with a recipe from Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius.

Star anise

Star anise

Serves 4:
Preparation time:
20 minutes
Marinating time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:
600g fromage blanc
120g strawberries (keep 4 for garnishing)
3 sprigs of mint (keep 4 for garnishing)
1 star anise
2 tbsp shelled pumpkin seeds
2 tsp olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp honey

1. Toast the pumpkin seeds for 5 minutes in a 180°C oven.
2. Chop the mint leaves.
3. Coarsely crush the star anise and put it into an empty pepper mill.
4. Rinse, drain and tail the strawberries. Cut them into quarters. In a salad bowl, mix them with the olive oil, lemon juice, chopped mint. Grind a little star anise on top and let rest for about 20 minutes.
5. Mix the fromage blanc with honey and grind some more star anise onto it.
6. Divide the strawberries into four elegant glasses, add the fromage blanc, then the pumpkin seeds. Grind some star anise on top and decorate with one whole strawberry and a mint leaf. Serve chilled.

Let us know how you get on, and send us your comments and pictures of your own fromage blanc with strawberries and pumpkin seeds. You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

You can also purchase the Constance Prince Maurice recipe book that contains this recipe and 50 more from our online store.

Recipe: The ultimate spare ribs from Chef Stuart Blair – Constance Moofushi

Alizee restaurant, Constance Moofushi, Seychelles

Relaxed barefoot chic at Constance Moofushi's Alizee restaurant, Maldives

Barefoot luxury is what Constance Moofushi Resort, Maldives is all about.

Alizee restaurant is serving simple, generously sized dishes made out of the best produce – in other words, ‘bare food’.

Stuart Blair, the executive chef at Moofushi, has brought back from his native Australia a very special recipe for spare ribs.

The ultimate Moofushi spare ribs

The ultimate Moofushi spare ribs

No cutlery is needed. At Moofushi, you’re given warm wet towels regularly during the meal to clean your hands.

Chef Stuart never shares his recipes with anyone. But he made an exception… just for you.

Ingredients

  • 400g pork ribs

For the marinade:

  • 220g soft brown sugar
  • 70ml chilli sauce
  • 120ml dark rum
  • 60ml soy sauce
  • 60ml tomato ketchup
  • 60ml Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3g dry mustard
  • Black pepper to taste

Vegetables to serve:

  • 1 medium carrot, sliced
  • 1 medium courgette, sliced
  • 1 red pepper, cut into wedge shapes
  • 6 Asparagus
  • Cauliflower, a handful of the flowers

1. Clean and prepare the ribs.
2. For the marinade – combine all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until all ingredients have dissolved. Cool and refrigerate until ready to use.
3. Marinate the pork ribs for 12 hours before cooking.
4. For the prepared vegetables – sprinkle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Chargrill until ready.
4. Chargrill the pork ribs until cooked through, and serve hot.

Let us know how you get on and send us your comments and pictures of your own spare ribs.

You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.