Friday, February 11, 2011

French Fridays with Dorie - orange-almond tart

Another week, another Friday.  For me, with my new schedule...Fridays are kind of like mid-week.  Saturday afternoons are when I'm done at the store and can relax for a day.  Some of you have asked about my store...I now own two Dream Dinners' franchises...one in Pasadena, CA  and one in Whittier, CA.  If you don't know what Dream Dinners is, have a look here.  Who knows, maybe there's one near you.  If so, check it out.  It comes in handy on those nights when you want a home-cooked dinner, but just don't have the A. Time, B. Energy, C. Desire...to cook from scratch.  So, enough about my business (well, not really, since it's consuming my every thought...waking and sleeping...I'm sure there will be more mention in this post.)

This week I got to make a beautiful orange-almond tart with all the other FFwD cooks.  I was a little concerned about a couple of things before starting this recipe.  First, it's a pretty pastry type dessert.  Kind of decorative.  And, even though I took a year's worth of cake decorating classes (and can make some incredible looking cakes)...I don't consider myself the decorative type.  Meaning that I often am much more concerned about how it tastes and not so much with how it looks.  Second, I knew segmenting the oranges was going to be a pain and I wasn't sure I really wanted to do it.  In fact, more than once I considered getting some canned mandarin oranges...is that awful???

Anyway...after stewing about the tart for a few days...I decided to go ahead and segment the oranges and attempt some decorative result.


As I was making the crust, I was sure Dorie was crazy.  There was no way these ingredients were going to come together and make a crust.  But, I kept the faith and continued to pulse on my Cuisinart.  All of a sudden, just like Dorie said, my Cuisinart made a different noise and the next thing I know...the crust has started to come together.


While the crust rested in the freezer, hand formed into the tart pan, I made the almond cream filling.  I use the term "cream" lightly...no not because it was light cream...but because there was no cream in this mixture.  It was sugar and butter and flour and almond meal and egg and vanilla.   But somehow, after a little processing, it turned into a cream like mixture (that tasted great...especially with the grapefruit segments that I had cut but ended up not using).  After blind baking the tart crust (which is really just a sable cookie recipe) and letting it cool, I put the almond cream in the tart crust, arranged my orange segments (which only took me about 20 minutes to cut) and baked again.

The result, a lovely tart that looks just like something we ate in France this summer.  And wasn't that the point!  Plus, it tasted divine!!!  Check out my fellow bloggers and see how lovely their tarts are this week too.




25 comments:

Lara B Knight said...

This tart looks wonderful!!! I have to get back on the FFwD kick! Hope you have a great weekend.

yummychunklet said...

It's not awful at all! I've tried several times on previous occasions to properly segment and de-string orange slices, and that's one skill I have yet to master. So, I broke down and used Mandarin oranges instead! Your tart looks great!

Ms. Hobby said...

Your tart looks great! I'm impressed you are able to keep up with FFwD while opening a new store!

Cher said...

Very lovely. Hey - I had to bring in outside help to supreme my oranges...
Glad you are hanging in there with the new store!

Creating Amazing Meals said...

Really beautiful, Steph! I made mine with pears this time.

Anne-Marie said...

You know your way around a tart, Steph! I can't believe you made this beautiful dessert while you've got all this business stuff going on. It's really lovely!

Lizzy said...

A picture perfect tart!!!

lola said...

Looks delicious. Mandarin oranges sound like a good option to me. I didn't have any trouble with my orange this time but who knows what will happen next time!

DessertByCandy said...

So happy it turned out so well for you! I was procrastinating too because of all the steps. :)

KarenP said...

Gorgeous!!!

Kathy said...

Your tart came out beautiful! I somehow missed the part about blind baking the crust. I did not do it and mine came out great. Now that I made one, I don't think I would bother to blind bake it.

Kris' Kitchen said...

Your store sounds wonderful...I checked out the web site. Sounds like lots of work. I'm proud of you for keeping up of FFwD and this week took some time. But all good things do take time and work. Your tart is lovely and your hand done crust is beautiful.

tricia s. said...

Great post and awesome photos- as usual ! Nana and I greatly enjoy your posts each week and want to nominate you for the "Stylish Blogger" award. I know that others have beaten us to the punch but you still made our list and we wanted you to add this to your ongoing tally of all who found you "more than worthy". Thanks for all the great posts !

SoupAddict said...

Great job - looks delicious!

Elaine said...

Your tart is very lovely, Steph. Congratulations on your two stores. How wonderful!

Cakelaw said...

Your tart looks devine Steph - well done!

Kudos Kitchen said...

I enjoyed reading your post and your thought process that went into it. Grapefurit segments, huh? I'll bet that was wonderful in taste. It sure was wonderful to look at! Good luck with your new business BTW. Very cool!

peaseporridgepdx said...

love your cake/tart stand!

KB from Prof Who Cooks said...

Your tart looks amazing! And to think you were worried about how it would look. Thanks for the info on Dream Dinners, too. It sounds like a great business concept--I just wish one was closer to me!

PattiCake said...

I haven't had time to make this yet. Yours looks wonderful! I really would like to give it a try. I've never tasted anything like it before.

Betsy said...

Looks perfect in spite of your concerns. Your photos always come out so well. My husband was looking over my shoulder as I read your post and asked me why your pictures are so nice (he never likes mine). I love your cake stand. I have the same one. Great post!

Betsy said...

Hi Steph, I’m glad I discovered your blog through FFwD.
I stopped by today to award you the Stylish Blogger Award to let you know how much I enjoy it. I know others have done the same, but I still wanted to share my appreciation of what you’re doing. Reading your blog brightens my day. Happy Cooking! Betsy

Frolicking Night Owl said...

Wonderful photos!!!!

Lana said...

I cannot believe that you were concerned about decorating the tart! Look at your finished dish - it is perfect. I was grumbling while I was segmenting my blood oranges (my fault, I wanted the jeweled colors:)
I loved the tart, the crust, the cream, the fruit. All I need is a proper tart pan, and I am making another one )this time I'll wrap the foil over the edges, because they turned a bit too dark).
I still don't know how you manage everything, but keep on:)

Ann (napangel) said...

Oh, my. Your tart is gorgeous. This was my favorite recipe so far! (I haven't posted about mine yet. I've been a slacker.)

By the way, I've awarded you the Stylish Blogger Award! Congratulations!

http://www.napangel.com/2011/02/16/stylish-blogger-awards/.