Recipe with Maison Talbooth, Dedham

Frozen Rhubarb Souffl�

It wasn’t the rolling countryside or the picturesque setting of Dedham’s Maison Talbooth which tempted Kiwi Evan Marshall away from his homeland of Dunedin in southern New Zealand. It was his wife, Fiona, who first travelled from Great Oakley to New Zealand, where she met Evan and fell in love. It was obviously a match made in Heaven as Fiona was also instrumental in Evan becoming a chef.

‘I had cook books all around my place and I’d been involved in the hospitality industry, so Fiona persuaded me to train as a professional chef at the local polytechnic in 1990.’

Four years ago the couple travelled to the UK and milsoms was the first company Evan began working with, although Evan was no stranger to England having played on tour here as a professional cricketer. Two-and-a-half years ago the couple got married at Le Talbooth. ‘We were so lucky. Working here gave us an amazing venue for our guests.’

In February of this year, Evan was asked to become head chef for the Maison Talbooth. Until then he had been in charge of Mr G’s, milsoms private function room, and so his hospitality background and attention to detail meant he was a natural choice. Maison Talbooth has proved popular with guests for house parties, poolside lunches and afternoon teas for guests who come for spa treatments and a spot of relaxation. Now aged 40, Evan has no plans to hot foot it back to his homeland.

‘Fiona and I have purchased a house in Dovercourt. We like it there and it’s great to walk along the beach. Although if ever we did decide to go travelling again, being a chef is great. You just pack up your whites and your knives and you’re off.’

Maison Talbooth specialises in light lunches with the Maison Platter being particularly popular. ‘It’s a little like a ploughman’s and great for grazing,’ explains Evan, ‘but there are plenty of culinary twists.’ Here, Evan shares his recipe for another British classic with a culinary twist, frozen rhubarb souffl�.

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400ml of water625g of sugar10 egg yolks750g of rhubarb puree1litre of double cream 7/8 egg whites

Method• Add the water to the sugar and bring to the boil. Boil the liquid until it reaches a soft ball consistency or 118-120C. • Add the mixture to the egg yolks and whisk until it reaches a ribbon consistency (this means you are able to draw a figure of eight which will sit on top of the mixture).• Whip the double cream until you get a soft peak. Fold in the rhubarb puree and cream in to the mixture. Whisk the egg white until you get a soft peak and then fold into the mixture.• Tape a 2-inch piece of card around the top of a ramekin dish. Fill the dish with the mixture until it is 1� inches over the rim of the ramekin and place in the freezer until required. • To serve, remove the cardboard surround, allow to rest for 5 minutes then pop the ramekin onto a serving plate and astound your guests with your cool dessert.