It’s impossible to underestimate the difference that best-quality ingredients make to your cooking. In the kitchen, we seem to be always looking for that one amazing fresh ingredient — the perfect tomato or wild mushroom — while the ingredients in our dry stores and pantries are often overlooked. Take the humble almond, for example, and its variations: ground almonds and almond oil. Most people will buy any almonds that come their way, mainly due to convenience, often settling for second-rate produce. Not all almonds are created equal and when you take the time to source a decent one that has been grown and looked after with care, it will make a big difference to the way your food tastes.
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To warm the custards, pour boiling water into a saucepan and sit the custards in the pan to briefly warm. Invert the custards onto each plate. Place a spoon of the almond crumb on top of each. Then scatter over the mandarin pieces and date slices and place a spoonful of almond sorbet on top. Sprinkle the sorbet with the praline and the almond oil. Finish with shards of beet paper and the blossom petals.
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