CHIPOTLE YAMS WITH TOASTED CORIANDER MARSHMALLOW TOPPING AND CANDIED BACON (Serves 6)
12 slices bacon, about 1/4-inch thick
finely ground black pepper
1/3 cup light brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Put bacon slices in a bowl, season them with pepper and toss with the brown sugar. Cover a baking sheet with parchment or foil and arrange the bacon in a single layer on top. Sprinkle any sugar left in the bowl over the bacon. Top with another layer of parchment or foil and top it, squarely, with another baking sheet. The baking sheet will flatten the bacon as it cooks.
Place the tray in the center of the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Check the bacon by lifting the top tray and parchment. If it is not golden brown and fairly crispy, resist the temptation to turn up the oven temperature, and cook it for 10 to 15 minutes longer. Check it again. Keep in mind that when you remove the tray and transfer the bacon to a serving platter or individual plates, the bacon will "crisp" up a little more. Be patient!
For the chipotle yams:
2 large yams (or sweet potatoes), peeled and diced
1 medium new potato, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons chipotle puree (or 2 chipotles en adobo)
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
½ cup toasted chopped pecans
salt, to taste
For the coriander marshmallow:
2 ½ Packages powdered gelatin (or 2 tablespoons + 1 1/4 teaspoon),
bloomed in ½ cup cold water
¼ cups toasted coriander seeds, crushed
½ cup water
2 cups sugar, divided
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon lemon zest
To prepare the chipotle yams, bring the potatoes to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes until soft. Place in colander set in the sink and let drain thoroughly, for about 20 minutes.
Place the yams or sweet potatoes in a bowl and whip with an electric mixer while adding the chipotle, maple syrup, orange zest and butter. Reheat the yams and spoon into a baking dish; sprinkle with the pecans and keep warm.
To prepare the coriander marshmallow, bring the water to a boil with the crushed coriander seeds in a saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and let infuse for 10 minutes. Strain through fine mesh strainer and measure. You should have ¼ cup. Add water if needed to have correct measure.
In another saucepan, bring the coriander water, 1 ¾ cups of the sugar and the corn syrup to a boil; cook mixture to 260 degrees on a candy thermometer, then stir in the gelatin.
Beat the vanilla, salt and egg whites until frothy. Gradually add the remaining ¼ cup sugar, while beating. Add the lemon zest and whip into the gelatin mixture. Continue to beat until mixture has cooled somewhat and is creamy.
Pipe or spoon the coriander marshmallow on top of warm yams and spread to coat evenly. Brown the marshmallow slightly with blow torch or place in 400 degree oven for 3-5 minutes. Decoratively place the candied bacon on top.
Chipotle Chile Puree:
10 chipotle chiles
Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles and toast in a dry skillet over high heat for about 30 seconds on each side. Alternatively, the chiles can be toasted on a baking sheet in a 500 degree oven for 60 seconds.
Place the chiles in a bowl and cover with hot water and let stand for an hour. Remove the chiles from the water and place in the blender. Add just enough of the soaking liquid to make pureeing possible. Blend until quite smooth.