Aperol, Rosemary, Honey, Scotch Paper and Gel Cocktail
A fantastic edible cocktail combining two molecular mixology techniques: cocktail papers and cocktail gels. As always, you need to start with a flavorful cocktail that tastes incredible by itself, such as this Aperol-based concoction. The strong orange, mandarin and bitter herbal flavors of Aperol, the floral notes and sweetness of honey, the smokiness of Islay Scotch and the subtle infusion of rosemary aroma make this cocktail one of my favorites and a perfect candidate for this recipe.
The strong flavors make it ideal for the cocktail paper technique and its bright orange color results in a beautiful translucent paper and gel. Dried orange bits on the paper intensify the orange flavor and add a new texture. A small lemon balm leaf as garnish adds a fresh lemony aroma that pairs well with the cocktail and introduces a new green color to break up the monotony. Great flavors, beautiful colors, stunning presentation and surprising textures make this edible cocktail a must try!
You can use another cocktail base for this recipe. Just remember that you need strong flavors to make the cocktail paper and you need to dilute the cocktail base to make the cocktail gel. Always remember that transforming a bad cocktail into paper or gel will not make it better.
In this recipe we also use the Rapid Infusion with the ISI Whip to infuse the cocktail base with fresh rosemary aromas.
Ingredients (20 servings)
Aperol Cocktail Base Ingredients
- 1 cup (8 oz) Aperol liquor
- 1/2 cup (4 oz) Laphroaig Scotch Whisky
- 1/2 cup (4 oz) honey syrup made by bringing to boil ½ water, ½ honey
- 1 rosemary sprig
Cocktail Gel Ingredients
- 4/3 cups (315 cm3/ 10.7 oz) cocktail base
- 2/3 cups (158 cm3 / 5.3 oz) water
- 8 Platinum gelatin sheets
- 10 square ultra-thin edible films, cut in half (or round edible film)
- 1 slice dehydrated orange cut into small bits
- 20 small lemon balm leaves
- iSi Whip
- Standard loaf pan (9" x 5" x 3" / 2lb pan)
- Spray bottle
Aperol Cocktail Base
1- Rapid Infusion with the ISI Whip : place all ingredients in the iSi Whip, including the rosemary sprig.
2- Close the iSi Whip and charge it with one iSi cream charger (1 for ½L iSi Gourmet Whip or 2 for 1L iSi Gourmet Whip) and swirl gently for 10 seconds.
3- Let it stand for 50 more seconds and with the ISI Whip standing upright suddenly vent all the N2O out of the whipper. A rapid release of gas forces the gas to penetrate more quickly. Be sure to capture any liquid that escapes by cupping the nozzle while holding the whipper in the upright position.
4- Strain the infused liquid.
5- Pour 2/3 cups of the Aperol cocktail base in a spray bottle. Reserve the rest of the cocktail base to make the gel.
Aperol Cocktail Paper
Always work with dry hands and on dry surface area when manipulating edible film. The Aperol cocktail paper is made in the same way we made the soy sauce crystal. You can watch video here of the Soy Sauce Crystal.
1- Spray Teflon dehydrator mat with Aperol cocktail base to cover an area about the size of the edible film you are using. If you don’t have a Teflon mat for your dehydrator you can try with parchment paper.
2- Lay the edible film on the wet surface area.
3- Spray edible film with Aperol cocktail base.
4- Carefully lay another edible film on top, making sure the edges align.
5- Repeat step 3 and 4 one more time so you have 3 layers of edible film impregnated with Aperol cocktail base.
6- Spray the top edible film with Aperol Cocktail base one more time.
7- Sprinkle with dried orange bits.
8- Place tray in dehydrator at 52 °C (125 °F) for 12 hours until crispy.
9- Carefully remove edible film crystal from the Teflon mat and store in a sealed container, using parchment paper to separate them.
TIP: once completely dry, they are extremely fragile and it could be tricky to remove them without breaking them. To make it easier, after 3 or 4 hours of dehydration time (sometimes more if there was too much liquid) you can carefully peel them from the Teflon mat while they are still flexible. Then continue dehydrating and it will be much easier to remove them when they are completely dry and crispy.
Aperol Cocktail Gel
1- Line standard loaf pan with plastic wrap, minimizing winkles so you obtain a smooth surface on the gel. Alternatively you can apply a light coat of cooking spray and then wipe the mold out with a clean paper towel.
2- Soak the leaf gelatine in cold water for around three minutes and let it swell for a few minutes. Then remove the swollen leaf gelatine from the water and carefully squeeze it out.
3- Warm the water in the microwave for a few seconds (do not boil).
4- Stir the swollen, squeezed gelatine directly into the warm liquid until it has completely dissolved.
5- Stir a few tablespoons of the cold Aperol Cocktail base into the dissolved gelatine and only then add the rest of the Aperol Cocktail base. Then mix everything thoroughly.
6- Pour gelatin mixture in prepared standard loaf pan and refrigerate overnight.
TIP: You can make cocktail gels the night before serving but don’t cut them or unmold them until about an hour before serving.
Assemble and Serve
1- Carefully unmold the Aperol cocktail gelatin onto a cutting board.
2- Using a boning knife, cut the gelatin into 2 cm (~2/3 in) cubes.
3- Place an Aperol Cocktail gel cube on one end of the rectangular Aperol paper.
4- Garnish with a small lemon balm leaf on top of the gel cube.
5- Serve immediately.