Hello. It’s been a while since I blogged. This blog post is going to be a lot of different recipes including a fruit tart, French macaroons, and more. Plus my blog is now over a year old! It has been a great year blogging and I’ve learned so many new baking techniques. I have become a much better baker and I’ve made so many new recipes. I want to get right to the recipes, so first up is fruit tart.
For the tart shell, you will need…
1 1/2 cups of flour
1/2 cup of butter
1/4 cup of sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
Beat the butter until fluffy. Gradually add the sugar, and continue beating until it is fully incorporated. In a separate bowl, sift the flour. Add the egg to the butter and sugar mixture. Add the flour all at once, and mix until it forms a ball. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 15-30 minutes, or until firm.
Next up is the pastry cream
1 1/4 cups of milk
1 vanilla bean, or vanilla extract
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup of granulated sugar
2 tablespoons of flour
2 tablespoons of corn starch
Any flavoring of your choice
Heat the milk and vanilla over medium heat until it is hot, but not boiling. While that is heating up, whisk the eggs, sugar, corn starch and flour. Pour the hot milk into the egg mixture, and whisk immediately. Strain the mixture back into the saucepan, and continue whisking until the mixture thickens into a paste. Add your flavoring if you want to. Transfer back into a bowl, and wrap tightly with plastic wrap to cool completely. Make sure to press the plastic over the pastry cream so it doesn’t form a skin.
Lightly butter and flour your tart pan. I used an 8 inch pan with a removable bottom, and it worked really well. Roll out the dough, and press into the tart pan. Cover and chill for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. When the pastry is done chilling, prick it with a fork so it doesn’t rise up in the oven. Bake for 5 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees, and bake for 15 more minutes. Let cool.
Once it it completely cooled, fill it with the pastry cream, and top with you fruit. I used kiwi, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries, but you can use whatever you can find. The more colorful, the better. And that’s it!
This is what my finished tart looked like. I served it for a New Year’s party and everyone enjoyed it.
You can use this crust recipe for basically any tart or even pie recipe. Also, the pastry cream can be used to fill cream puffs or eclairs.
Next recipe: French macaroons
2 egg whites, don’t use the kind from a carton, those won’t work at all
35 grams of sugar
115 grams of powdered sugar
60 grams of almond meal
Preheat the oven to 150 Celsius.* Pulse the powdered sugar and the almond meal in a food processor until you have fine pieces. Then sift into a bowl and set aside. In a stand mixer, whip the egg whites and sugar until you have stiff peaks. You should (hypothetically) be able to turn the bowl upside down on your head without it falling out. Whip for an extra 1-2 minutes. Fold the dry mixture into the egg whites. Fold very gently; about 30-50 times or until smooth. Do not over mix!
Pipe onto parchment lined baking trays, and hit the trays really hard on your table. Put them in the oven for 20 minutes. Make sure you check on them every so often to make sure they are not over baked. Let cool.
You can make whatever filling you want. My favorites are ganache, buttercream and whipped cream, but you can honestly use anything. Sandwich two cookies together with the filling and enjoy.
*302 degrees Fahrenheit
Macaroons are extremely difficult, so don’t get upset if they don’t work for you at first. They take tons of practice to perfect.
I’ve made them a couple of times and experimented with different shapes and sizes:
The final recipe of the day are my biscotti.
2 cups of flour, plus 2 tablespoons
1 cup of light brown sugar
1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
sprinkle of cinnamon
1/4 cup cubed, cold butter
1 tablespoon of canola oil
2 tablespoons of instant coffee, dissolved in 2 tablespoons of warm water
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Mix the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, cinnamon and baking powder. Cut in the butter, until you have fine crumbs. Mix the wet ingredients together, and mix in with a wooden spoon. Knead for about 8-10 minutes.
Divide into 2 loaves, and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Flatten to about 1/2 an inch. Bake for 25 minutes and then let cool for 10 minutes. LEAVE THE OVEN ON. Sorry to scream at you. Cut into 1 inch pieces, and return to the oven for 9 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet, and then let cool completely on wire racks.
Melt some dark chocolate, and chop up some almonds. Dip one side of the cookies in the chocolate, and then roll in the almonds. Let the chocolate dry, and then enjoy!
These are what mine looked like. They were really crunchy but delicious!
Variations: You can dip them in white chocolate or milk chocolate if you like. You can also roll them in whatever you want: other nuts, chocolate pieces, crushed up candy canes. Experiment! Be creative.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. Write your recommendations in the comments, and give me feedback on my blog. Please try making one of these recipes, and then tell me how it worked for you. Also, comment any baking questions you have, and I’ll try my best to answer it. Have a good day!
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