This delightful Bird’s Milk recipe originates from Poland and has become a beloved treat enjoyed by dessert enthusiasts around the world. Bird’s Milk is a delectable dessert that combines fluffy foam, creamy goodness, and a touch of chocolate.
To create Ptasie Mleczko, the recipe begins by preparing a soft and airy foam made from whipped egg whites. This is achieved by beating the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, resulting in a light and fluffy texture. Gradually, sugar is incorporated into the foam, adding sweetness and stability.
Meanwhile, a cream mixture is prepared by heating heavy whipping cream and combining it with lemon juice and vanilla extract. This aromatic blend infuses the cream with a delicate tang and enhances the overall flavor profile. Gelatin leaves are added to the cream mixture, providing structure and ensuring the dessert sets properly.
The foam and cream mixture are then gently combined, resulting in a harmonious blend of textures and flavors. The foam loses a bit of volume during this process, but it contributes to the dessert’s desirable lightness and softness.
For a final touch, the foam squares are enrobed in a layer of luscious dark chocolate. The smooth and rich chocolate coating adds depth and indulgence to the dessert, making it an irresistible treat for chocolate lovers.
Ptasie Mleczko, the delectable Polish treat, has its origins in the mid-20th century when it was crafted by the renowned Wedel chocolate company. The name “Bird’s Milk” may draw inspiration from an enchanting Slavic folktale, where a mystical bird was believed to yield milk possessing magical qualities. While this whimsical name beautifully encapsulates the dessert’s ethereal and airy qualities, it’s important to note that the connection to the actual bird’s milk remains unverified from a scientific perspective. If you would like to know more about Bird’s Milk you can read our article From Slavic Legends to Sweet Indulgence – The Fascinating Tale of Bird’s Milk on the blog.
- 6 egg whites (you can use pasteurized eggs for safety)
- 3/4 cup (170g) sugar
- 5 tbsp (75g) heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 16g gelatin
- 3.5 ounces (100 g) of dark chocolate
- Start by soaking the gelatin leaves in a bowl of cold water for about 5 minutes.
- Take a small saucepan and heat up the heavy whipping cream gently.
- Whisk in the lemon juice and vanilla extract, creating a delightful aroma.
- Incorporate the gelatin into the mixture, ensuring thorough stirring until it dissolves entirely. Remove the saucepan from the heat.
- Now, let’s focus on the egg whites. In a mixer, beat them at medium speed until soft foam forms. Once it starts to thicken, increase the speed to high and continue beating until stiff peaks form. This will give the dessert a light and fluffy texture.
- Gradually add the sugar, spoon by spoon at a time, while still beating the egg whites. Incorporating the sugar slowly ensures a smooth and sweet result.
- Lower the mixer speed a bit and slowly pour in the cream mixture. Don’t worry if the foam loses some volume. It’s perfectly normal.
- Line a baking dish with plastic wrap, then pour the foam into it. Allow it to set for a minimum of 8 hours, or for the best results, let it rest for a full 24 hours. This will ensure the gelatin reaches its maximum strength, giving the dessert a firm texture.
- Once the foam has been set, carefully remove it from the dish by lifting the plastic wrap. Cut it into your desired shapes. Get creative—squares, rectangles, or even cute little circles!
- It’s time to work with chocolate! Melt about 5.3 ounces (150g) of the bittersweet chocolate in a bain-marie or a double boiler. Once it’s completely melted, remove it from the heat and whisk in the remaining chocolate until it’s smoothly incorporated. The rich chocolatey goodness is irresistible!
- Take each foam square and lovingly dip it into the melted chocolate, giving it a generous coating. Place the chocolate-covered squares on a drying rack, allowing them to set and become beautifully glossy.
- To preserve the freshness and taste, store your delightful bird’s milk creations in the fridge. They’ll stay delicious for up to three days, but we doubt they’ll last that long. Enjoy every bite!
Remember, cooking is all about having fun and expressing your creativity. So relax, take your time, and savor the sweet rewards of your labor.
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Bird’s Milk recipe – alternative coating
If you prefer not to enrobe the bird’s milk squares in chocolate, you can try an alternative coating or presentation. Here are a few suggestions:
- Dust with Cocoa Powder: Instead of dipping the squares in melted chocolate, you can lightly dust them with cocoa powder. This will give them a subtle chocolate flavor and a beautiful appearance.
- Roll in Shredded Coconut: Another option is to roll the set foam squares in shredded coconut. It will add a tropical twist and a delightful texture to the dessert.
- Drizzle with Caramel or Chocolate Sauce: Prepare a homemade caramel or chocolate sauce and drizzle it over the cut foam squares. This will add a touch of sweetness and create an elegant presentation.
- Sprinkle with Crushed Nuts: Crushed nuts, such as almonds, hazelnuts, or pistachios, can be sprinkled over the foam squares for a crunchy element and added flavor.
- Serve with Fruit Coulis: Prepare a fruit coulis of your choice, such as raspberry or strawberry, and serve the bird’s milk squares with a drizzle of the coulis. The fruity sauce will complement the creamy texture of the dessert.
Feel free to experiment with different coatings or combinations to suit your taste preferences. The goal is to enhance the flavor and visual appeal of the bird’s milk squares while keeping it enjoyable for you and your guests.
How long it will take to prepare a bird’s milk recipe?
The preparation time for a bird’s milk recipe can vary depending on your experience and efficiency in the kitchen. However, here’s an estimated breakdown of the time required for each step:
- Soaking gelatin leaves: 5 minutes
- Heating and mixing cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract: 5 minutes
- Beating egg whites to stiff peaks and incorporating sugar: 10-15 minutes
- Combining cream mixture with egg whites: 5 minutes
- Setting time for foam: Minimum of 8 hours (or up to 24 hours for best results)
- Cutting and shaping foam: 10 minutes
- Melting chocolate and enrobing foam squares: 15-20 minutes
- Setting time for chocolate-coated squares: Varies depending on temperature and conditions, usually around 15-30 minutes
In total, the active preparation time for a bird’s milk recipe is around 40-50 minutes. However, keep in mind that the foam needs several hours to set properly. So, including the setting time, the overall duration of the recipe is at least 8 hours or overnight.