Jul 21, 2019 Last Updated 6:31 AM, Nov 9, 2017

Apple Buckwheat

Mark Welker's Apple Buckwheat.

Apple puree, buckwheat cake, puffed buckwheat, buckwheat brittle, apple toffee glaze, apple poaching liquid, poached apples, apple sauce, ginger pickling liquid, pickled apples, sage ice cream and apple compote by Mark Welker, Executive Pastry Chef of The Nomad Hotel in New York, NY.


Yield: 8-12 servings

Apple Puree:

  • 17.6 oz/500 g Red Delicious apples
  • Apple cider 

Quarter the apples and place in a pot with the skins and seeds intact. Cover the apples with apple cider and a parchment cartouche. Cook until the apples fall apart. Strain apples through a fine mesh strainer. Put the apples through a food mill and reserve.

Buckwheat Cake: 

  • 14 oz/400 g apple cider
  • 0.45 oz/13 g baking soda
  • 14 oz/400 g Apple Puree
  • 6.2 oz/176 g unsalted butter, softened
  • 6.3 oz/180 g granulated sugar
  • 0.45 oz/13 g salt
  • 5.6 oz/160 g buckwheat honey
  • 11.3 oz/320 g large eggs
  • 1 oz/30 g vanilla extract
  • 17 oz/480 g all-purpose flour
  • 2.8 oz/80 g buckwheat flour
  • 0.45 oz/13 g baking powder 

1. Preheat the oven to 330°F/165°C. Line a square baking pan with parchment. Bring the apple cider to a simmer in a pot over medium heat. Add the baking soda to the cider and stir to combine. Remove the cider from heat and add the cold Apple Puree. Stir to combine and let cool to room temperature. 

2. Combine the butter, sugar, salt, and buckwheat honey in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix on medium speed until completely combined. Turn the speed to low. Add the eggs, one at a time, waiting for the previous egg to be incorporated before adding the next. Mix in the vanilla extract. Add half of the flours and baking powder to the butter mixture and paddle until smooth. Fold in the remaining flour and the apple mixture with a rubber spatula. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake in the oven until a cake tester comes out clean, about 30-45 minutes. Let cool to room temperature. 

Puffed Buckwheat: 

  • 17.6 oz/500 g buckwheat groats
  • Canola oil, for frying 

1. Preheat the oven to 150°F/65 C. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the buckwheat and stir. Cook the buckwheat until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain the buckwheat and spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Dry the buckwheat in the oven, stirring every 30 minutes, until the buckwheat is just dry on the outside, about 1 hour total.

2. Heat 7.5 cm canola oil in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat to 475°F/246°C. Fry the dried buckwheat in small batches until puffed. Transfer the puffed buckwheat to a paper towel to drain any excess fat. 

Buckwheat Brittle:

  • 2.6 oz/75 g water
  • 8.8 oz/250 g granulated sugar
  • 1.76 oz/50 g buckwheat honey
  • 3 oz/85 g unsalted butter
  • 2.25 oz/64 g glucose syrup
  • 0.17 oz/5 g baking soda
  • 0.28 oz/8 g salt
  • 2.6 oz/75 g puffed buckwheat 

1. Combine the water, sugar, honey, butter and glucose in a pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Continue cooking the mixture until an amber color is achieved. Remove the caramel from heat and add the baking soda and salt and stir to combine. Add the puffed buckwheat and immediately spread on a baking sheet lined with a non-stick baking mat in a thin layer. Let cool to room temperature. When cool, break the brittle into large pieces and transfer to a large zip top bag. 

2. Crush the brittle with a rolling pin. Reserve the crushed brittle in a dry, airtight container at room temperature. 

Apple Cider Reduction:

  • 8.34 lb/3.78 kg grams apple cider
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 17.6 oz/500 g sliced fresh ginger
  • 0.17 oz/5 g Saigon cinnamon bark
  • 0.17 oz/5 g cardamom
  • 0.17 oz/5 g star anise
  • 1 orange peeled (only the peel) 

Combine all of the ingredients in a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Continue to simmer the mixture until 75 Brix is achieved. Strain the reduction through a fine mesh strainer and reserve. 

Apple Toffee Glaze: 

  • 2.2 lb/1 kg heavy cream
  • 8.8 oz/250 g light brown sugar
  • 5.3 oz/150 g maple syrup
  • 3.5 oz/100 g Apple Cider Reduction 

Combine all of the ingredients into a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Continue to simmer the mixture until it is a dark caramel and a glazing consistency. Remove the glaze from heat and let cool to room temperature. 

Apple Poaching Liquid: 

  • 66.77 oz/1893 g apple cider
  • 2 oranges peeled (only the peel)
  • 0.17 oz/5 g cardamom
  • 0.28 oz/8 g Saigon cinnamon bark
  • 2 vanilla beans
  • 0.17 oz/5 g star anise
  • 0.17 oz/5 g telicherry peppercorns
  • 1.76 oz/50 g buckwheat honey 

Combine all of the ingredients in a saucepot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Remove the mixture from heat and let steep for 30 minutes. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer and chill over an ice bath. 

Poached Apples: 

  • 2 Pink Lady apples
  • Apple Poaching Liquid 

Using a #22 Parisienne scoop, scoop spheres from the apples with the skin. Place the apple spheres in a saucepan and cover with the apple poaching liquid. Cover the apples with a parchment cartouche. Bring the poaching liquid to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Remove the pan from heat and let cool to room temperature. Repeat this process as necessary until the apples are tender. 

Apple Sauce: 

  • 2.6 oz/75 g unsalted butter
  • 17. 6 oz/500 g peeled and thinly sliced macoun apples
  • 6.17 oz/175 g dry Riesling
  • 2.3 oz/65 g granulated sugar
  • 1.4 oz/40 g crème fraîche
  • Malic acid
  • Xanthan gum 

1. Heat the butter in a saucepan over medium heat until foamy but not browned. Add the apples and sweat, stirring frequently, without any color, until they begin to release their liquid, about 7 minutes. Add the Riesling and reduce until almost dry. 

2. Transfer the cooked apples to a blender top with the sugar and crème fraîche and puree until smooth. Blend xanthan gum in as necessary to achieve sauce consistency. Season the sauce with malic acid and pass through a fine mesh tamis. 

Ginger Pickling Liquid:

  • 4.4 oz/125 g ginger juice
  • 2.6 oz/75 g lemon juice
  • 1.76 oz/50 g granulated sugar
  • 4.4 oz/125 g water 

Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the rest of the ingredients and chill the pickling liquid over an ice bath. 

Pickled Apples:

  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • Ginger Pickling Liquid 

Thinly slice the apple. Place the apple slices in a shallow container and cover completely with the pickling liquid. Compress the apple slices using a cryovac machine. Keep the apple slices in the pickling liquid until ready to use.

Sage Ice Cream:

  • 48.6 oz/1379 g milk
  • 15.48 oz/439 g heavy cream
  • 4.7 oz/133 g milk powder
  • 0.35 oz/10 g sage leaves
  • 4.7 oz/133 g glucose powder
  • 2.3 oz/66 g trimoline
  • 0.5 oz/16 g ice cream stabilizer
  • 10.5 oz/300 g granulated sugar
  • 0.28 oz/8 g salt
  • 0.35 oz/10 g vanilla extract 

1. Combine the milk, cream, milk powder, and sage in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the milk mixture from the heat and let steep for 30 minutes. 

2. Add the glucose and trimoline and stir to combine. In a separate pan, combine the stabilizer, sugar, and salt and whisk to combine. Whisk in the milk mixture and bring the mixture to 195°F/91°C over medium heat. Remove the mixture from heat, and add the vanilla extract. Strain the ice cream base through a fine mesh strainer and chill over an ice bath. Freeze the ice cream base in an ice cream machine. Keep frozen. 

Apple Compote:

  • 0.35 oz/10 g unsalted butter
  • 8.8 oz/250 g peeled and diced Macoun apples
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1.4 oz/40 g dry Riesling
  • 1.76 oz/50 g sugar
  • 1.76 oz/50 g glucose syrup 

Heat the butter in a saucepan over medium heat until foamy but not browned. Add the apples and vanilla bean and sweat, without any color, until the apples being to release their liquid. Continue to cook the apples until they are almost dry. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until the mixture reaches a thick compote consistency. Chill the compote over an ice bath. 


  • Fleur de sel

1. Break the Buckwheat Cake into bite sized pieces. Warm up the toffee glaze and roll the cakes in the glaze.  Wipe the excess glaze off.  Roll the glazed cake in Puffed Buckwheat. Warm up the Poached Apples.

2. Put a spoonful of the Apple Puree on a plate and swipe it across the plate with an offset spatula.  At the end of the swipe put a spoonful of the puree, as well.  

3. Warm the glazed Buckwheat Cake in an oven at 350°F/180°C for about 4-5 minutes. Place the buckwheat cakes on the plate.  In the center of the plate put a spoonful of the Buckwheat Brittle. Place 4-5 poached apples and some compote around the plate. Lay some of the pickled shaves around as well, curling some of them.  On top of the spoonful of brittle, place a quenelle of the Sage Ice Cream. Finish the plate with fleur de sel.


Click here to read more about this and related recipes in the article "Big Apple Desserts."

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