Here’s the story behind the dish from Head Chef Christian.
"The Jackfruit Cigars is a dish I came up with after visiting India. I visited New Delhi with my partner and as we strolled through the Old Town and food markets we stumbled across a quirky fine dining restaurant, which was completely different to everything else around Colonial Square. There were some very cool dishes there, and one served was cigars, in a cigar box - I really liked the idea, and wanted to create something similar. I looked into using cigar boxes too, but decided, the wooden boxes would be difficult and unhygienic to use in our pop-up environment.
I really wanted to pin down a signature vegan dish, so we started experimenting with Jackfruit and found we could make a delicious Italian style Ragu - which was perfect to fill my cigars. We use a vegan pastry recipe and roll it through a pasta machine to get it nice and thin. Then we roll the cigars, well I guess like you would a real Cigar! The Jackfruit Ragu can go sour quickly and doesn’t take long to seep into the pastry, so we freeze them immediately at their best and cook from frozen. It’s a great way of doing it as the pastry can be fried until golden brown and crispy whilst gently warming the filling.'
"I collect and upcycle a lot of old china from auctions and boot sales and had a number of unused and quirky ashtrays, which seem to be dying out rapidly, along with smoking. These were the perfect serving dishes for our dipping sauce and obviously great for balancing the cigars on. I wanted the dip to resemble burning ash embers - so we use a burnt Onion Vinaigrette and mix this with Black Garlic Aioli and this creates the ‘ash sauce’ which balances perfectly with the Ragu and crispy pastry. We then drizzle a "sauce Basque" in there too, this is basically my favourite Chilli "piment d'espelette" from the basque country - it’s marinated with shallots, thyme and garlic. Lastly we crumble crispy kale and carrot crisps on top of the ash dip to add some texture and create an ember looking effect.
It took probably a month of playing around before we arrived here, and like all our dishes it evolves and although it's now a staple on our menu, there could be a few variations in the pipeline to make it even more exciting.'
If you’d like to get your chops around Croustillant D’s amazeballs new dish, you can get it as part of our juicy Wriggle deal here.