Harrods pastry chef Maxime Michelot has won first prize at this year's Classic Fine Foods' bûche de Noël competition.
Michelot's entry was a spiced cinnamon log with layers of Valrhona's Opalys chocolate, bavaroise mousse, passion fruit and mandarin jelly with poached pear, sitting on a base of coconut dacquoise. The bûche was topped with edible baubles made from yoghurt mousse, yoghurt meringue jelly and a pooping chocolate centre.
The competition, designed to promote UK pastry talent and encourage creativity, asked participants to create a bûche de Noël using a choice of Valrhona chocolate, including Nyangbo 68%, Azelia 35%, Opalys 33% or Dulcey 32%.
From a list of 25 entries from UK pastry chefs, the final five were shortlisted based on the number of ‘likes' on Classic Fine Food's Facebook page.The judging panel comprised press, representatives from Classic Fine Foods, Valrhona chocolate and last year's winner.
Michelot's winning entry
The full results:
1. Maxime Michelot, Harrods, London
Cinnamon log with white chocolate bavaroise mousse, passion fruit and mandarin jelly with poached pear, on a base of coconut dacquoise and popping candy centre
2. Oana Cercel, the Berkeley hotel, London
White chocolate-glazed log with a layer of chocolate mousse, with mandarin and star anise jelly, cinnamon and manjari cremeaux and a Marcona almond streusel
3. Jonathan Deddis, Kadiri's, London
Triple chocolate log with winter spices and fruits, white chocolate and apple mousse, apple and yuzu compote, dark chocolate mousse, flexible ganache, orange caramel biscuit and dark chocolate gingerbread sponge decorated with dark chocolate glaze, biscuit crumble, red chocolate stones, apple microwave sponge and white chocolate crumbs
4. Clarence Sanoner, the Lanesborough, London
Crunchy log with a macadamia caramelised dacquoise with crunchy macadamia feuilletine, chocolate mousse and a cremeux mandarin and saffron
5. Catherine Smith, the Ritz, London
Clementine cremeux and jelly log with milk chocolate mousse on a caramelised almond feuilletine and brownie base.
Michelot won a five-star weekend in Rome, with a dinner in a two-Michelin-starred restaurant. Second-placed Cercel won a Valrhona stagé at the Valrhona cookery school in Tain L'Hermitage, France.
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