La Galette des reines

In France, “Galette des Rois/Reines,” not to be confused with King cake is made in anticipation of the Epiphany holiday.  It is very common for the French bakeries to carry them until end of January because it is the only time of the year we get to enjoy them. 

Galette des Rois is a pastry dough cake made mainly with almond flour and  almond filling. Nowadays, people have switched from the traditional and opted for filing such as pistachio, chocolate, etc. The most important part of the Galette is finding the trinket hidden in the Galette as part of the tradition.  A good quality sparkling wine or champagne is great way to enjoy your Galette. 

Don’t have a French bakery near you and feeling a bit adventurous? How about trying to make it?

IMG_3525[679].jpg

Ingredients

1 cup /100 g almond flour
3 1/2 ounces/ 100 g unsalted room temperature European butter cubed
½ cup/ 100 g sugar
Zest of ½ orange
Pinch of salt
2 large eggs at room temperature
2 teaspoons rum
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon milk
2 pastry dough
1 teaspoon milk and 1 egg yolk (to glaze the galette)
Trinket (1 almond nut)


Preparation

  1. In a stand mixer, combine the almond flour, sugar, orange zest, and salt.  Add the butter to the mixture and mix until completely incorporated. Stir in the eggs on at a time along with the almond extract and the rum.  Cover and chill. 
  2.  Place the first pastry dough on a floured surface. 
  3. Remove  the filling from the refrigerator. Take the first dough and spread the almond filling on top (mainly in the center). Don't forget to add the trinket. 
  4. Brush the borders  of the dough with some water, then place the second dough to cover the filling and press down to seal the edges. If your dough is too warm, you can refrigerate it before baking. 
  5. Mix your egg yolk and the milk. 
  6. Brush your galette with the milk/egg yolk glaze and poke some holes in the galette – this will help the steam to escape while baking. 
  7. Bake the galette for 30 min or until the galette is brown on the top and the sides. 

Salted Caramel Chocolate Tart

A few years ago in a tiny Parisian flat with the help of a Parisian pastry sous-chef, I found myself making my first chocolate tart.  I vividly remember the smell of the dough in the oven, the caramel on the stove, and the chocolate melting in a water bath.  It had such an irresistible smell and of course I was impatient to devour the tart, but was given a warning to wait until It cooled off.  When you are making this, while it’s cooling off, make yourself a little apéro or else you will be tempted to indulge into it immediately.  

While running errands on a Saturday afternoon we realized World Market was having a promotion on all Lindt chocolates.  As you may know by now, we love using Lindt chocolates for entertaining and baking, so we decided it was the perfect opportunity to make some Salted Caramel Chocolate Tarts mmmm!  I know it sounds quite appetizing and we love the combination. The salted caramel, dark chocolate, and caramelized almonds are exactly what you need right now.

VSCO Cam-1-10 copy.jpeg

Seriously how beautiful is this dough!

Quite frankly you just can’t have too much chocolate in your life and when life gives you chocolate, you must make chocolate desserts!

Of course we want you to play chef and create this tart to take to a dinner party or simply a party to share with everyone.   That’s why we will share the recipe with you, and you can tell us how yours turns out when you make it. 

It’s always best to pair your chocolate dessert with a nice bottle of champagne or prosecco. It makes it even more special (at least that’s what we like to believe).

We used our pate sable dough recipe (Tart dough) and what’s special about this dough is the rich texture from the butter.  It almost feels like a crumble.  In order to obtain this, you need to mix the flour and the sugar in cold water and then incorporate the butter.  We will give you more details in the recipe. The perfect dough, the constancy of the caramel and the quality of the chocolate you pick are a game changer for the tart, so please select your ingredients carefully for a great flavor.  We topped ours with coconut ice cream.  It added a tropical vibe to our tart since we are rejecting the idea of summer being

IMG-0653.JPG

This recipe has satisfied our palettes for decades and we truly hope they satisfy yours as well. 

VSCO Cam-1-3.jpg

Salted Caramel Chocolate Tart

List of Ingredients

For the tart pastry dough:

  • 250 g or 8.8 oz of unbleached flour
  • 125 g of 4.4 oz cold European butter
  • 5 to 10 cl or 1.6 to 3.3 oz of water
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • 1 tbsp of sugar

For the caramel:

  • 250 g or 8.8 oz of sugar
  • 100 g or 3.5 oz of European butter
  • 17 cl or 5.7 oz of heavy whipping cream

For the chocolate ganache:

  • 200 g or 7.05 oz of dark chocolate
  • 15 cl or 5.07 oz of heavy whipping cream
  • 30 g or 1.05 oz of butter

1st step: Tart dough prep

1.     Mix together flour, salt, and sugar. Work in the cold butter until mixture is the consistency of coarse meal.

2.     Add the egg yolk.

3.     Progressively add the water to the mixture until it comes together to form a ball.

4.     Roll out the dough to about 1/8 inch of thickness

5.     Grease your pan with butter and dust with some flour.

6.     Place the dough in the pan and line with parchment paper.

7.     Add dry beans or baking beans to prevent the dough from rising.

8.     Bake the tart at 180°C or 355°F in oven for approximately 10-15 minutes.

9.     Carefully remove the dry beans/baking beans (they will be hot).

10.  Return the tart to the oven for 5-10 min to allow the base to cook properly.

11.  Let the dough cool for 10 min.

2nd step: Caramel sauce

1.     Put sugar in a non-stick pan over low heat.

2.     In the meantime, bring the whipping cream to a boil.

3.     Do not stir the sugar as it caramelizes. Cook it slowly until it has a golden color and then stir if there is any sugar left.

4.     Over low heat, carefully and gently add the cream gradually to the caramelized sugar, stirring with each addition.  The mixture will bubble as you add the cream to the caramelized sugar. Continue this process until all the cream has been incorporated into the melted sugar.

5.     Still over low heat, add the butter.

6.     Remove from the stove and stir until the butter has fully melted.

7.     Let the caramel cool for 10-15min before pouring into the tart.

3rd step: Ganache

1.     Place your chocolate in a mixing bowl.

2.     Heat the cream, butter, and salt to a boil.

3.     Pour the hot mixture into the chocolate, and stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is thoroughly combined.

4.     The consistency should be delicate.

5.     Pour the mixture on top of the caramel.

6.     Refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

4th step: Caramelized almonds

1.     Melt sugar into a non-stick pan over low heat until it turns a golden color.

2.     Dip your almonds in the caramelized sugar until completely coated. Remove almonds from mixture and place on parchment paper to cool.

3.     Decorate the tart with the caramelized almonds.

4.     Finally enjoy!! 

Rody&Taty 

 

Petit Beurres

Today we are taking you to Nantes, France.  Nantes is a city in western France on the banks of the Loir, just upriver from the Atlantic coast. Growing up, one of the snacks that we always had was “Petit Beurre,” the French version of shortbread that originated in Nantes. 

You might have seen them in your local grocery store because their popularity has spread around the globe, with the best-known brand being Petit Lu.

They are usually rectangular in shape with scalloped edges and are docked, the holes common to shortbread.  One of the distinct things though about Petit Lu is their dark, almost burnt corners. They were crispy enough that the sugar in the shortbread did not overpower our taste buds, and they simply melted in our mouths with every bite. They were  another perfect tea snack.

 Even though we could buy them in any store in France growing up, we learned to make our own. We vividly remember the smell as we baked them at home. As always, homemade is better!

 

Madeleines

Madeleines or “French Butter Cakes,” as they are called in the US, originated from the northeastern part of France in the Lorraine region. If you have lived in France or had the opportunity to visit, you know how we love our special treats and Madeleines are synonymous with France. Madeleines are a French teacake shaped like a shell with a light smooth and soft texture.  We’ve loved eating them since we were little children and baking them always resurrects our childhood memories.  These small cakes are soft and make the perfect coffee/tea snack. Nowadays, they can be found at any café around the world. Even Starbucks has adopted them.

Quite frankly, they are also very easy to make. One of the many things we enjoy about them is the variety you can easily make.  We’ve made them with lemon, lavender, honey or tiny chocolate chips, or dip them in chocolate or simply dust them with confectioner sugar.

The basic ingredients for making great madeleine are unbleached flour, sugar, eggs, and butter. We find that French butter imparts a unique flavor and texture to baked goods; therefore, we always bake using French butter. Most American supermarkets carry French butter, usually President brand, and other European butters. If you cannot find European butter, you may use other butter, but the results will not be the same. We mainly use unbleached King Arthur Flour for all of our pastries. Madeleines are best when freshly baked and eaten the same day. You may store them in an airtight container to keep them fresh.

Now let’s get to the fun part. We will teach you how to make them. We hope you will enjoy them as much as we do. First, you must get a madeleine mold – they are quite inexpensive. We prefer using the original metal one, but you can also use the silicon mold; however in our experience the cakes taste better when baked in the original metal mold.

And just remember everything in moderation!

Lavender Madeleines

 This recipe produces about 12 madeleines

Ingredients

  • 1 Madeleine Mold
  • 150 g Unbleached flour
  • 150 g confectioner sugar
  • 150 g unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh Lavender
  • 1 teaspoon of unsalted butter and flour to grease the madeleine mold

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F).
  2. Melt and brown butter in a small saucepan. The color should be a hazel look alike.
  3. Set aside the melted butter to cool.
  4. In a large bowl (you can use a hand mixer if you don’t have an electric mixer), or use the bowl of an electric stand mixer, whisk the eggs and sugar together until you obtain a pale and thick mixture.
  5. Add the flour, baking powder, honey, lavender and melted butter. Mix until everything is well incorporated. The batter should have a thick consistency.
  6. Leave the batter to rest in the fridge for at least 1 hour (optional).
  7. Grease the madeleine mold with butter and flour.
  8. Place a teaspoon of batter in each mold filing up to 2/3. You can also use a piping bag if it’s easier.
  9. Bake the madeleines until they have risen and are lightly golden on top. Cooking time is roughly about 7- 10 min. You are looking for a caramelization on the border.
  10. Finally, when the madeleines are cooked, remove them carefully and cool them for about 10 min on a baking rack.  

Now “à l’attaque” like we say in French. Enjoy!

 

Rody&Taty 

Fete de La Bastille!!

We were all Cocorico!!!! by treating ourselves to a delicious Saint Honoré. A little History, Le gâteau St.Honoré is one of the most famous French pastries, named after the saint patrons of pastry baker said to be invented at the chiboust bakery on Rue Saint Honoré in Paris. It was only fitting that the Parisian in us will see fitting to celebrate with a St. Honoré and of course some wine.