Summer Tartlet With Crème d’amande & Crème Pâtissière

INGREDIENTS:

CRÈME PÂTISSIÈRE
  • 500 ml milk
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 70g caster sugar
  • 30g cornstarch
  • 30g all-purpose flour
 METHOD: 
  1. Split the vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds.
  2. In a saucepan, add milk, vanilla seeds and pod and half of the sugar (35g).
  3. Heat the milk mixture to a simmer.
  4. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks with the remaining sugar in a heat proof bowl until creamy and pale in color. Add the cornstarch and the flour. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Remove the vanilla pod from the milk.
  6. Temper the eggs: Pour 1/2 of the warm milk into the bowl with the egg mixture and whisk until smooth.
  7. Now warm the remaining milk in the saucepan to a slow boil.
  8. Pour the egg mixture into the pan while whisking vigorously and constantly until the you have a smooth cream and you see the first bubbles in the pan. Remove from heat.
  9. Immediately pour the cream into a large baking pan. Spread out the cream and cover the surface with plastic wrap.
  10. Refrigerate over night or until completely cold.
PÂTE SUCRÉE
  • 300g butter
  • 180g icing sugar
  • 50g almond flour
  • 1 vanilla bean/1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • a pinch of salt
  • 500g all-purpose flour

METHOD:

  1. Cream the butter until smooth.
  2. Add the sugar, almond flour and vanilla seeds. Mix until combined. If vanilla extract is used, mix the vanilla with the eggs and add in the next step.
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix until combined.
  4. Mix the salt with the flour.
  5. Add the flour in three additions. Mix for about 10 seconds after each portion or until it just comes together. Once the flour is added it is important not to overwork the dough. Be quick because you want to stop gluten protein formation.
  6. Divide the dough into 3 portions. Plastic wrap and refrigerate over night. The dough you wont be needing can be frozen at this stage. Thaw over night in refrigerator.
  7. Remove the dough from the fridge and place it on a flour dusted work bench. Beat it with the rolling pin a couple of times to flatten it. Then roll it to a thickness of 3-5 mm. Again, try to be quick and not to overwork the dough.
  8. Line the tart pan or flan ring with the dough. Let it rest for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.
  9. Preheat the oven to 175°C.
  10. Put a piece of parchment paper on top of the dough and fill the tart pan with beans or rice.
  11. Blind bake for 20 minutes.
  12. Remove the parchment paper and the beans.
  13. Allow to cool on wire rack still inside the tart pan or ring mold until the crème d’amande is ready.
LA CRÈME D’AMANDE
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 250g almond flour
  • 250g butter, room temperature
  • 250g eggs
  • 35g all-purpose flour
METHOD: 
  1. Mix sugar and almond flour.
  2. Beat in the butter until very smooth and creamy.
  3. Add the eggs in two additions. Beat with a whisk to make the cream airy and light.
  4. Cently fold in the flour.
  5. Pipet a 1 cm thick layer of the cream into the blind baked tart shells.
  6. Bake for another 10-20 minutes. Time depends on your almond cream. Bake until the almond cream has puffed up and surface starts to get golden brown.
  7. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack still inside the tart pan or ring mold.
SERVING
Pipet a layer of crème pâtissière on top of the crème d’amande and decorate with a mixture of beautiful summer berries.
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Chocolate Pecan Tart / Bourbon-Pecan Tart with Chocolate Drizzle

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Taking the Pecan Tart a step further and what’s the best thing to use? Of course Chocolate.

Below you will find 2 versions one with just Chocolate & Maple Syrup and the second version is with Bourbon. Choose whichever you prefer 🙂

VERSION 1

CHOCOLATE PECAN TART & MAPLE SYRUP

INGREDIENTS:

  • 375g pack shortcrust pastry (might be easier than making your own pastry)
  • a little flour, for dusting
  • 185g dark chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate if you like it sweet!
  • 50g salted butter
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 200ml maple syrup
  • 200g whole pecan nuts

METHOD:

  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.
  2. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface and use to line a 20cm loose-bottomed tart tin. Fill the tart with baking paper and baking beans, bake for 25 mins, then remove the baking paper and beans. Continue to cook for 10 mins more until golden.
  3. Remove from the oven and cool.
  4. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a large bowl over a pan of simmering water.
  5. Whisk the eggs and maple syrup together, then stir into the chocolate with most of the nuts.
  6. Pour into the tart shell, top with the remaining nuts and bake for 30-40 mins until set.
  7. Cool and serve with vanilla ice cream or double cream.

VERSION 2

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BOURBON-PECAN TART WITH CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup dark corn syrup
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg white
  • 2/3 cup pecan halves
  • 1/2 (425g) package refrigerated shortcrust pastry
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2 ounce/15g bittersweet chocolate, chopped (or more)

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Combine first 10 ingredients, stirring well with a whisk. Stir in pecans.
  3. Roll dough into a 13-inch circle; fit into a 20-22cm removable-bottom tart pan coated with cooking spray. Trim excess crust using a sharp knife. Spoon sugar mixture into prepared crust.
  4. Bake at 180° for 45 minutes or until center is set.
  5. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  6. Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH 1 minute or melt over bain-marie. Stir until smooth.
  7. Drizzle chocolate over tart.

No-bake peach and almond tartlets

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 3/4 cup 35% cream
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp orange-blossom water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 large ripe, firm peaches, peeled and diced
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted

METHOD:

  1. Stir crumbs with butter in a medium bowl, until mixture is moist. Line 8 cups in a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Scoop a scant 3 tbsp crumb mixture into each cup. Firmly press from centre of liner to edges and up the sides until crust is even with rim. Refrigerate until firm.
  2. Beat mascarpone with cream, honey, orange-blossom water and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high until fluffy, about 2 min. Remove muffin tin from refrigerator and fill prepared crusts with mascarpone mixture up to the rim. Smooth tops. Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
  3. Stir peaches with sugar in a small bowl. Let sit until peaches soften, about 15 to 20 min. Drain liquid and stir in almonds.
  4. Unmold tartlets onto individual dessert plates. Scoop mixture over each tartlet.

Hazelnut Plum Tarts

INGREDIENTS:

makes six 4-inch tarts

  • 255 g (2 cups + 2 Tbspn) AP flour
  • 80 g (1/2 cup) hazelnuts
  • 1/2 tspn Turkish coffee
  • 1/4 tspn ground cardamom
  • 1 tspn baking powder
  • 1/4 tspn sea salt
  • 2 sticks (1 lb) butter, at room temperature
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 150 g (3/4 cup) sugar
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1/2 tspn hazelnut extract
  • 1/2 tspn vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbspn orange juice
  • 4 – 6 small plums
  • turbinado sugar

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 180° C. Lightly grease the inside of six 4-inch tart molds. Set aside.
  2. In a food processor, combine the flour, hazelnuts, Turkish coffee grounds, ground cardamom, baking powder, and salt. Process until the hazelnut is finely ground.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter for 2 to 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
  4. Meanwhile, rub the orange zest into the sugar with your fingertips. Slowly add the sugar into the butter, creaming thoroughly until well-incorporated and aerated. 5. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Then add the hazelnut and vanilla extracts and the orange juice. Beat well.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in two stages, beating until combined and until a smooth dough forms.
  6. Divide and press the dough into the prepared tart pans. Slice the plums and arrange the slices on top of the dough, pressing down lightly. Sprinkle with a healthy amount of turbinado sugar.
  7. Bake the tarts for 25 to 30 minutes, until the edges are golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before unmolding from the tart tins.

Tart des Tropiques (Tropical Meringue Tart with lime, coconut & sesame)

INGREDIENTS:
makes one 9-inch round tart, or equivalent thereoffor pastry:

  • 260 g all-purpose flour
  • 72 g sesame seeds
  • 50 g sugar
  • ⅛ tspn salt
  • 7 Tbspn butter, cut in pieces
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 Tbspn sesame oil
  • 3–3½ Tbspn water
  • 1 large egg white

for lime curd:

  • 8 Tbspn butter, cut in pieces
  • ¾ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 125 g sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3 large eggs
  • zest of 2 limes

for meringue:

  • 3 large egg whites
  • 94 g sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1 tspn coconut extract
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • toasted coconut chips

METHOD: 

  1. for pastry. Combine the flour, sesame seeds, sugar, and butter in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the butter is the size of small peas. Add the egg yolk and sesame oil and pulse to combine. Add the water, one tablespooon at a time, while processing, just until the dough holds together when pressed between two fingers. Do not overmix. Remove the dough from the food processor, form into a small, flat disc, cover tightly with plastic wrap or parchment paper, and refrigerate for at least one hour. The dough should be firm to the touch.
  2. Preheat oven to 220° C. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the cold dough to ⅛-inch thickness. Transfer to tart pan, press in the bottom and sides, and prick the bottom a few times with a fork. Return the pastry to the refrigerator if it has softened. Line with a piece of parchment paper, fill with pie weights or beans, and bake for 13 to 15 minutes. Remove the weights and the parchment paper, brush the insides of the pastry with a small amount of egg white, and return to the oven for 3 to 5 minutes more, until the crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  3. for lime curd. Preheat oven to 190° C. Suspend a bowl over simmering water. Place the butter, lime juice, sugar, and salt in the bowl and let cool, whisking occasionally, until the butter has completely melted. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, beat the eggs and yolks to combine. When the butter has melted, temper the eggs by gradually and slowly pouring about half of the butter mixture into the eggs, whisking continuously. Continue to cook over simmering water, stirring and scraping the bottom of the bowl with a spatula, until thick, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in the zest, and pour the curd into the prepared tart shell. Bake the tart for 10 minutes. Remove and let cool completely.
  4. for meringue. In a bowl suspended over simmering water, beat the egg whites, sugar, salt, and cream of tartar until hot to the touch (60° C on an instant read thermometer). Immediately add the coconut extract and transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Beat just until stiff, glossy peaks form. Do not overbeat! Immediately pipe the meringue onto the cooled tarts, and brown under the broiler or with a kitchen torch. Top with toasted sesame seeds and coconut chips.

Strawberry Passionfruit Tart

INGREDIENTS:
makes one 9×9-inch square tart

for tart shell:

  • 1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour
  • 1 1/2 Tbspn dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 tspn salt
  • 2 tspn freshly grated meyer lemon zest
  • 10 Tbspn butter, cold and cut into small pieces
  • 1 Tbspn fresh meyer lemon juice
  • 1/2 tspn vanilla
  • 1 – 2 Tbspn cold water

METHOD:

  1. Combine the flour, dark brown sugar, salt, and lemon zest in a bowl. Mix.
  2. Using a pastry cutter or a fork, cut the butter into the flour mixture until butter is the size of small peas.
  3. Mix in the lemon juice and vanilla into the flour mixture. Gradually add the water just until a dough forms when pressed between your fingers. Do not overmix.
  4. Form the dough into a flat disc, wrap with parchment paper or plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  5. Preheat oven to 220 degrees C.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough until about 1/8-inch thickness and place in the tart pan, pressing the dough gently into the sides. Trim and discard any excess dough. Prick the bottom of the dough all over with a fork. Return to the refrigerator and chill for at least 10 – 15 minutes.
  7. Place a piece of parchment paper over the dough and weigh down with pie weights or dry beans. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes until the edges begin to turn golden. Remove the weights and parchment paper and continue to bake for 3 – 5 minutes more, until the entire tart crust is golden.
  8. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.

for filling:

  • 2 – 3 punnets strawberries
  • 1 Tbspn water
  • 1/4 + 1/8 tspn gelatin powder
  • 1/4 cup passionfruit pulp or puree
  • 1 1/2 Tbspn sugar
  • whipped cream, optional

METHOD:

  1. Trim the green end off the strawberries and arrange in the cooled tart shell.
  2. Place the water in a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin powder over the water and let sit briefly.
  3. In a small saucepan, stir to combine the passionfruit and sugar. Add the gelatin and warm over low heat until, stirring until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Do not let boil.
  4. Once dissolved, remove from heat and let cool briefly. Spoon or brush a thin layer of the passionfruit onto the strawberries–do not use all of the passionfruit. Place the tart in the refrigerator to let the first layer of jelly set. Keep the passionfruit at room temperature. After about 20 – 30 minutes, brush another layer of passionfruit jelly onto the tart and return to chill. Repeat once more, using the remainder of the passionfruit. Tart is ready to serve when the jelly has set completely. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.

Strawberry and Rosemary-Caramel Buckwheat Tart

INGREDIENTS:
makes one 9″ round tartfor tart crust:

  • 100 gr buckwheat flour
  • 160 gr AP flour
  • 50 gr sugar
  • 7 Tbspn butter, cold and cut in pieces
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3-4 Tbspn cold water

METHOD:

  1. Using a food processor or pastry cutter, mix the buckwheat and AP flours and sugar until combined. Cut the cold butter into the flour mixture until the size of small peas.
  2. Add the egg yolk and gradually add the water just until a dough begins to form when you press it between two fingers. Do not overmix.
  3. Form the pastry into a ball and refrigerate for at least one hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C.
  5. Remove the pastry dough from the fridge and press the dough into the tart pan. Prick the bottom of the dough all over with a fork, cover with parchment paper, and weigh down using dry beans or pie weights. Return to freezer/refrigerator for a few minutes if the dough has softened.
  6. Bake for ~13-15 minutes until the edges just begin to turn golden. Remove the beans and the parchment paper and continue to bake for 3-5 minutes more, until the crust has completely turned golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool.

for rosemary-caramel:

  • 100 gr sugar
  • ~2 heaping Tbspn fresh rosemary leaves (~1 1/2 large sprigs of rosemary)
  • 3 Tbspn butter
  • 1/2 tspn coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tspn freshly squeezed lemon juice

METHOD:

  1. Have all ingredients pre-measured and ready next to the stove.
  2. In a small, light-colored saucepan, wet the sugar with just enough water to make it the consistency of wet sand (~1 – 1 1/2 Tbspn water). Add the rosemary leaves.
  3. Cook the sugar and rosemary on medium heat. Do not stir once the sugar starts boiling–swirl the pan around gently to insure even cooking. Cook until the sugar is a deep amber color, right before it is about to burn. Immediately add the butter and salt and whisk thoroughly. Be careful–this will sputter!
  4. As soon as the butter has completely melted, remove from heat and carefully add the heavy cream, whisking continuously.
  5. Once the cream has incorporated, pour the caramel into another heat-resistant container to cool, straining through a fine mesh sieve to remove unevenly cooked sugar, if necessary. Let cool briefly. Stir in the lemon juice. Let cool briefly, and spread a thin layer onto the bottom of the tart crust. Save any extra caramel for other uses. Let the caramel cool to set.

for cream:

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 egg
  • 150 gr sugar
  • 2 Tbspn AP flour
  • 1 tspn vanilla extract

METHOD:

  1. Bring the milk and cream to just a simmer.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg and sugar. Whisk in the flour.
  3. Using the simmering milk, temper the egg mixture by adding a little bit of the hot liquid at a time, whisking constantly.
  4. Return the milk and egg mixture to heat, stirring and scraping the bottom of the saucepan until the mixture thickens and can thickly coat the back of a spoon.
  5. Immediately remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.
  6. Let cool. Once cool, pour on top of the caramel in the tart crust and smooth. Refrigerate for at least an hour to let it set.

for strawberry syrup and final assembly:

  • 12 oz. (~285 gr) frozen strawberries, thawed with juices
  • 1 tspn (~5 gr) lemon juice
  • 1-2 Tbspn sugar, to taste
  • fresh strawberries, sliced or whole

METHOD:

  1. Extract all the juice from the frozen strawberries by pressing them through a fine mesh strainer. You should have a little more than a 1/2 cup of juice. Set the pulp aside for other uses.
  2. Boil the strawberry juice until it has reduced by more than a half (~3-4 Tbspn left).
  3. Stir in the lemon juice and then stir in the sugar to taste. Let cool briefly.
  4. Arrange the fresh strawberries on top of the prepared tart. Brush the strawberries with the slightly warm strawberry syrup.