What's The Secret?

Joined Feb 1, 2007
So, as part of a recipe test, I made a parfait this evening.

Instructions say to use parchment paper to make the collars, and either tape or tie them in place. Tried both methods, and both were awkward, to say the least. More to the point, both styles leaked. I'd have been better off using foil, I reckon.

So, my question is, for those of you who have made this style of dessert, what's the secret? How do you get the parchment paper to stay in place tightly enough so that the "custard" doesn't leak and has time to freeze in place?

If it matters, I used those small, fluted ramikins that look like miniature souffle dishes. Parchment was attached so it stood 1" higher than the rims, and were filled half-way up those extensions.
Joined Feb 13, 2008

If you're not cooking the dish (like a souffle) use tape to make a tight collar.  Cut a parchment strip, put a piece of tape on one end, so half of it goes beyond the edge, stretch your collar tight as you please over the other.  Then seal. 

Use more tape just to be sure. 

Tape is magic.  Tape is your friend.  Tape doesn't want jewelery or tuition, doesn't need to be fed or walked, and loves you just as the same.

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Joined Feb 1, 2007
Hey! Try and keep up. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lookaround.gif

I tried both tape and tying, as I said. The problem seems to be that the parchment paper is too stiff to form-fit to the cup, as it were. So the filling (in this case, egg yolks, whipped cream, sugar and Grand Marnier) slowly leaked down the outter sidewalls of the ramikins.

What I have right now are eight ramikins in the freezer, sitting in a frozen pool of the filling

That's why I guessed foil would work better, because of it's more clinging nature.

The point is, however, that parchment was the traditional way of doing this, so there's got to be a way of making it work. I'm hoping some of those less pastry-challenged then me can offer some tips.
Joined Oct 10, 2005
Nothing sticks to parchment paper, not even caramel, and especially not tape.

If your ramekins have a inside "Lip", place your strip of parchment paper inside the ramekin resting on the lip, then fill. You can also cut your strip of paper the height of your ramekin plus the additional height you want, then wrap this around the ramekin and secure with rubber bands and set on a tray to freeze.  The strip can't slip down because it's resting on the tray, however you will get some "seepage" down the sides as the filling will leak a bit as it freezes.

It will always leak if you pace the strip of paper on the outside.  The way I've always explained it to staff is :" when you take a shower, do you have the shower curtain inside the tub, or out?
Joined Mar 16, 2005
Use non-stick spray to "glue" the parchment to the sides of the ramekin and to the other end of the parchment.  Ironically, non-stick spray does a great job at it.  Then you don't need to worry about it curling up awkwardly.

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