Monday, July 14, 2014

Happy Bastille Day!

It's the 14th July which is Bastille Day in France and I am celebrating with these adorable bite-size raspberry tartlets and a trip down memory lane.

When I was young my family took a few trips to France and amongst the many happy memories from those trips one of the most prominent were trips to the boulangerie/ patissierie in the morning to pick up the bread and some cake for the day. My dad made a ritual of this every morning and it was one of my favourite things about our trips. Inevitably the delicious raspberry tarts that are so classically french were a regular feature on our holiday table so this tart brings with it more than the sweet flavours, it's cliche but it brings wonderfully memories of happy times.

The pastry base is rustic, perhaps a little too rustic for a french pastry chef but they are just as delicious and use equipment that you might already have.

To form the pastry bases I used a miny cupcake tin. However the inside of the cases would be too small so I formed the pastry over the bottom of the tin and cooked them with a cookie sheet on top to weigh them down and ensure that they had a flat base.

Raspberry Tartlets

Short Crust Pastry
165g Butter (Cold)
375g Plain Flour
2 tbsp Caster Sugar
Ice-cold water until combined
Ground almonds to roll

1. Cut the butter and sugar together until you've formed small crumbs.

2. Add in your sugar and mix thoroughly.

3. Add ice cold water, one tablespoon at a time, and mix thoroughly. If doing this in a food processor
    continue processing until one dough ball has formed. Then cover in cling-film and refridgerate for
    at least 20 minutes.
4. Roll out the dough and use a tiny bit of ground almonds to keep the dough from sticking. Be
    careful not to use too much or the tough will dry up, if this happens just work the dough back
    together and re-roll with less almonds. Preheat your oven to 200'C.

5. Using a circle cutter, cut out circles of pastry and then chill again before baking for 10-15 minutes.

Creme Patissiere
6 Egg Yolks
150g Caster Sugar
2.5 Tbsp Plain Flour
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
525ml full fat milk

1. Beat egg yolks and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the flour and beat again.
2. Heat the milk in a saucepan with the vanilla bean paste until boiling.

3. Slowly add the boiling milk into the egg and continue beating.

4. Return to the pan and heat until boiling again and the mixture thickens.

5. Let cool slightly before passing through a sieve.

6. While the mixture is still warm pour tablespoon amounts into each pastry case. and let chill, then top each with three raspberries and dust with icing sugar.

As you can see I also glazed half of mine but could not perfect the glaze so that might need to be another post
These particular tartlets were destined for a wonderful BBQ I attended this weekend and received wonderful reviews so I can guarantee they go down well. The best part is that they are so small that, as my bf pointed out, you might need more than one to be sure how much you like them and that's just fine ;)

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