By Craig Hart, One Square, Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa
Whether it’s a result of the Great British Bake Off phenomenon or simply because British people are renowned for having a ‘sweet tooth’, desserts seem to be the order of the day – and the more experimental, the better.
But have you ever thought of having breakfast at dinner time?
Well, two of the desserts on our menu here at One Square restaurant at the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh have been described as ‘hot’ by Restaurant Magazine, and one of them includes ingredients like burnt toast, marmalade and Earl Grey tea!
Our ‘Tea, Toast and Marmalade Sundae’, is an innovative addition to our ‘Frozen Twist offerings and was created by our talented pastry chef Colin Hall. Colin was looking to create a quirky dessert using quintessential British ingredients, whilst keeping in line with One Square’s philosophy of serving classic dishes with a modern twist. As a result, a traditional British breakfast of tea, toast and marmalade has been turned on its head and served as dessert.
First of all, we strain the Earl Grey tea and mix it with sugar to create a beautiful sorbet. Next, we move onto the toast, which we burn until it’s completely black, then infuse in ice cream for two hours before straining it. This creates a delicious ice cream that contains an authentic taste of toast…. without the burnt bits!
We create the marmalade ice cream by cooking orange zest with the finest Scottish marmalade, Galloway Lodge Preserves Marmalade from south east Scotland, which we fold into an ice cream mix. The sorbet and two ice creams are served with citrus brioche toast and the finished product is a beautifully-crafted, unique dish that tastes like breakfast but is actually a dessert. Colin experimented with this dish a few months ago and we decided to try it out with regular One Square diners and dessert aficionados. They raved about it so much that we just had to add it to the menu.
Another emerging trend in the dessert world is alcoholic ice creams, something One Square has offered for some time now. In homage to One Square’s gin bar, which offers more than 50 premium gins, we have our signature Gin & Tonic Sorbet, which is the perfect palate cleanser between courses or as a satisfying stand-alone dessert. Other current dessert cocktails include Vanilla Velvet Crunch featuring Captain Morgan spiced rum and Jim Beam honey with vanilla ice cream and honeycomb crunch. A tasty winter choice is Grandma’s Fruit Cake with Disaronno, Frangelico and Chambord with a double cream float.
One of our star desserts was introduced to the menu when One Square opened in April 2012. The After Eight Mint Sphere is accompanied with hot chocolate sauce – the ice-cream melts when the sauce is poured over it, creating a wow factor and making it a truly indulgent dish. This is now a One Square Signature Dish and one of the most ordered items on our menu.
It’s true that dessert is often the talking point of a meal, and can make or even break the overall dining experience. With Colin and the pastry team taking our desserts to a new level, One Square is firmly becoming the place to experiment and enjoy the sweeter things in life.