Thursday, February 12, 2015
I found it! Dorie Greenspan's Around my French Table! I wasn't expecting to chance upon it at the library so it was a pleasant surprise. The savory recipes look so tantalizing but alas, the only ones I really feel like trying are the desserts. And there are so many delicious-sounding ones I just didn't know where to start! Marie-Helene's apple cake, sugar-crusted french toast, coupetade (french toast pudding!!), double chocolate banana tart... This book is nuts!
The apple cake sounded the most appealing but I chose to make the orange-almond tart in the end because I had a bit of tart dough to use up. There was not quite enough for a full 7 inch tart but more than plenty for a couple of 4-inch tarts. So orange-almond tartlets it was!
If you've been following this blog for a while you might know that I tend to deviate from the recipe sometimes just because I (always) feel like mixing things up. Apart from using a different shortcrust pastry recipe, I took the liberty of adding a bit of cinnamon to the almond cream mix as I dearly missed the comforting scent of cinnamon. And I cheated by using mandarin oranges so I didn't have to go though all the carving and slicing *sneaky grin*
I thought that the tarts smelled amazing while they were baking but they tasted even better (like how is that even possible??) I'm a huge sucker for frangipane especially if it contains rum - and cinnamon - and I adore buttery crunchy pastry so it's honestly no surprise that I would fall in love with this recipe. Plus it's by Dorie Greenspan, one of my favoriteee cookbook authors of all time.
Oh and I'm not sure if it was just my imagination but the almond cream closest the oranges tasted a little bit sweeter than those that are further away.
I think I might make more mini tarts in the future because they have a higher crust to filling ratio. I'm alllllll for more crust. And yeah tarts in general.
makes a 9 inch tart
adapted from around my french table by Dorie Greenspan
I divided the recipe by a third to make two 4 inch tarts. I also added a dash of cinnamon to the almond cream.
For the tart dough:
9 to 91/2 inch tart shell made with sweet shortcrust pastry, partially baked and cooled (I used this recipe)
For the oranges:
4 navel or other meaty oranges, segmented
Place the segments between triple layers of paper towels and let them dry for at least 1 hour, or several hours, or even overnight. This is to get the most flavour and texture from the fruit.
For the almond cream:
6 tbsp unsalted butter
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup ground almonds
2 tsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp cornstarch
1 large egg
2 tsp dark rum or 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Beat the butter and sugar together until smooth. Add the ground almonds and stir until well-blended. Stir in the flour and cornstarch then the egg. Add the rum or vanilla. You can use the almond cream immediately or refrigerate until form, about 2 hours. It's better if you can allow the cream to chill but it's not imperative.
Bake the tarts: Preheat oven to 350F.
Stir the almond cream then turn it into the crust, smoothing the top. Arrange the orange slices in a decorative pattern over the top. Do not cover every bit of the cream because it'll bubble and rise as it bakes, and it's nice to leave space for it to come up around the fruit. Bake the tart for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the cream has risen and turn golden brown. Transfer the tart to a cooling rack and cool to room temperature.