Friday, May 27, 2011

Sugar Crust

This is a great base for berry pies and any fruit pie with a layer of pastry cream. The crust does not get soggy and it feels like you are eating a cookie!

Sugar Crust/Pate sablee

Makes 2 crusts

8 oz butter (2 1/2 sticks or 300g), at room temperature
6 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
a pinch of salt
2 eggs
3 cups flour

Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle. Add the sugar, confectioners sugar and the salt.
Add the eggs, one at a time and mix well. Add the flour and mix on low speed until combined.

Transfer the dough on a sheet of plastic film and form into a ball. Refrigerate.

If you are making only one pie, or tart, you can freeze the remaining dough, either wrapped in plastic film, or in the metal pie dish, ready to use!

Most recipes will ask you to bake the crust alone. You may use pie weights, but I simply freeze it for about 15 minutes before baking, and check it often when in the oven. If bubbles form, pop them with a fork!
Baking time for a berry pie, about 20 minutes. It should turn golden, but not burnt!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Quiche with Mushrooms and Cherry Tomatoes

May is going by very fast, also I am really counting the days until school ends!
I have been very busy, between school, soccer and ...a new job! I am back into the catering business! Ardeo, The Fire of the Mediterranean. I am no at a yacht club anymore, but a golf club!! Funny when you know i refuse to touch a club since I threw my back on my first try!!!
But the job is what I love to do, staff is nice and the food is good!

Since starting this new position, I have neglected Charlotte and Spice, but I am getting back on tracks! And today, I am serving a savory tart, recipe inspired by Eric Kayser, THE baker of Paris!

Quiche aux Champignons et Tomates Cerises

Serves 8

One Whole Wheat Pie Crust with chopped mint (see notes on the recipe )

1 bunch fresh mint, finely chopped
4 large eggs
1 cup milk (25cl)
1/2 lb creme fraiche (250g)
5 oz feta cheese (150g), crumbled
1 lb (500g) Cremini mushrooms
1 lb (500g) cherry tomatoes, halved
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Roll out the crust and line a buttered and floured pie dish. I like to use the metal dish with removable bottom.
Bake the crust for about 20 minutes. Check it regularly to see if bubbles form. If so, poke them with a fork. You can also use pie weighs when baking the crust. When baked, let cool.

In a bowl, whisk the eggs, the milk and creme fraiche. Add the feta cheese and about 1/2 cup finely chopped mint. Cover and refrigerate. May be prepared the day before.

Wipe the mushrooms clean and cut into fourths. Saute the mushrooms in a pan, with a little olive oil, until slightly browned. Let cool.

Add the mushrooms to the cream mixture and pour into the crust. Add the halved cherry tomaotes on top and bake for about 25 minutes.

Serve hot with a salad (I love arugula with a quiche!).

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Whole Wheat Pie Crust

16 Tbsp (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup water, warm

In food processor, pluse the flour and butter until it resembles coarse meal. Add water, a little at a time, until the dough is moist.
Make a ball of the dough and let rest for one hour.

Roll and use as a regular pie crust.

For the Quiche with Mushrooms and Cherry Tomatoes, you will add 1/3 cup of chopped fresh mint in the food processor with the flour.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Berry Tiramisu

I had a really lovely Mother's Day! Great breakfast and awesome dinner.
For dessert, Emilie wanted to make her classic Frozen Key Lime Pie, which I love, but I wanted to try something different. And it was all about me, right?!
I looked at a few magazines, on line...And opted for a berry dessert. Tiramisu with berries...! Here is my version of it. Emilie and I made it together and next time she will be able to make it on her own!

Berry Tiramisu

Serves 10

24 oz fresh blueberries (can be frozen)
18 oz fresh raspberries (can be frozen)
1/3 cup sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup rum (or other liqueur)
About 40 Lady Finger (dry, not soft)

1 16-17.5 oz container Mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1 1/2 cup heavy cream (cold)

6 oz fresh blueberries
6 oz fresh raspberries

In a medium saucepan, bring the blueberries, sugar and lemon juice to a boil, on medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the raspberries and cook for another 2 minutes, until they are heated through.
Remove from the heat and let cool a little.
Add the rum. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream until stiff peaks form.

In another bowl, mix together the Mascarpone and the confectioner's sugar until smooth.

Combine the whipped cream with the sweetened Mascarpone delicately adding the cream to the cheese little by little.

Line the bottom of a dish with the Lady Fingers. Ladle about 1/3 of the fruit mixture on the Lady Fingers. Spread the cream/Mascarpone mixture on the fruits.
Repeat two more times, ending with the cream.

Refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Before serving, top with the fresh berries.

Can be prepared one day ahead.