Culinary journey with Antoine Gras and his chocolate and saffron dessert

Grand cru chocolate from Jamaica and the sweetness of Saffron... A dessert that we would love to enjoy by the fire, facing the snowy mountains of Val d'Isère. Before being able to take action at La Table de l'Ours, a starred restaurant in the heart of the Alps, we try to reproduce at home this recipe that its chef Antoine Gras revealed to us.

Chef Antoine Gras trained in the kitchens of two 3-star restaurants before joining the kitchens of the Relais & Châteaux Les Barmes de l'Ours, in Val d'Isère in 2013. From kitchen assistant, he climbed the ladder to become chef in 2017. A few months later, he was awarded his first Michelin star.

Close to the fire and facing the immensity of the mountains, his gastronomic restaurant La Table de l'Ours offers a creative cuisine based on the flavours of the Alps and elsewhere. Mission accomplished with his dessert "Chocolat grand cru de Jamaïque et douceur du Safran" for which he reveals the recipe. On the programme: chocolate crumble, chocolate cream, saffron emulsion, sponge cake, touches of melted chocolate, gruée, saffron ice cream, chocolate tuile... Autant d'éléments à préparer pour confectionner un dessert étoilé. So, are you ready to bake?

Chocolate crumble (ingredients for one portion):

  • 100 g butter
  • 100g sugar
  • 80 g hazelnut powder
  • 70 g cocoa powder
  • 40 g flour
  • 2 g of salt

Mix all the ingredients with a mixer and bake for 12 minutes at 170°C.

Chocolate cream :

  • 170 g whole milk
  • 170 g cream
  • 60 g egg yolk
  • 50 g sugar
  • 220 g Jamaican chocolate

Make a custard and pour it over the chocolate. Blend the mixture and set aside in the fridge.

Chocolate siphon :

  • 3 eggs
  • 60 g egg yolks
  • 30 g sugar
  • 225 g Jamaican chocolate
  • 110 g butter
  • Saffron

Heat the whole eggs, egg yolks and sugar to 60°C in a bain-marie, then whip the mixture with a mixer. Melt the chocolate and butter and mix with the previous mixture. Put in a siphon in a bain-marie.

Siphon of gruée :

  • 425 g whole milk
  • 100 g roasted grits
  • 20 g Pro Espuma

Roast the gruée in the oven at 170°C for 10 minutes. Bring the 170g of milk to the boil and infuse the grits for 10 minutes. Strain through a sieve and leave to cool. Once the grué has cooled, add the Pro Espuma and put it in a siphon. Set aside in the fridge.

Saffron emulsion :

  • 200 g whole milk
  • 0,02 gr Saffron
  • 50 g cream
  • 30 g butter
  • Sugar

Heat the milk with the saffron, cream and butter to 60°C. Blend everything together. Keep warm and stir when necessary. Keep only the foam.

Sponge Cake :

  • 80 g sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 100 g Jamaican chocolate
  • 20 g flour

Whisk the sugar and eggs together and then mix with the melted chocolate and flour. Once the mixture is well blended, put it in a siphon. Fill a cup by half with the mixture and cook for 1 minute in the microwave.

Saffron ice cream :

  • 900 g raw milk
  • 75 g trimoline
  • 200 g cream
  • 200 g egg yolks
  • 110 g sugar
  • 1 g stabiliser
  • 0,2 gr Saffron

Heat the milk and saffron to boiling. Once the mixture is hot, blend it and strain it. Return the mixture to the heat and add the sugar, stabiliser and make a custard. Leave to mature and then pass through an ice cream maker.

Chocolate tuile :

  • 225g icing sugar
  • 12 g flour
  • 50 g cocoa powder
  • 125 g egg whites
  • 225g melted butter

Sift the flour, cocoa powder and icing sugar together and fold in the egg whites. Heat the butter to 50°C and fold into the mixture. Finely sand a silpat sheet and bake at 160°C for about 6 minutes.


Spread crumble and dried sponge cake on the bottom of the plate. Poach a few dots of chocolate cream and then add the chocolate discs of different sizes. Add a quenelle of saffron ice cream in the middle, then siphon off the remaining spaces with the chocolate and the crumble. Finally, add the saffron emulsion.

Getting to Val d'Isère in the Alps