Sunday, October 5, 2008

Week 2: Tarts

We have rotations - two weeks of tarts, two weeks of doughs, two weeks of cakes and two weeks of bread. In some unknown order and grouping. This week was tarts and next week will be the same. We've made pate sucree and pate brisee. Pate sucree is a sweet shortcrust sort of dough used for sweet things, and the pate brisee is a standard dough for savory things. 

The kitchen is really hot, I'm talking hot enough to melt the butter in pate sucree really quickly, so when we've come to rolling out the refridgerated dough we have some serious issues. Mostly it falls apart when it comes ready for us to line the flan tins (tart tins - the type without any bottom so the dough kind of falls right through). So this weekend I've decided to make some tarts using the scaled down doughs (we usually make batches of dough that make between 4-6 tarts). 

I made a onion quiche from Julia Childs amazing book "The French Chef" using the altered pate brisee recipe we use at school. I'm currently in the middle of making a pear tart with brown butter filling and slivered almonds, as well as a walnut caramel tart. 

We spent Friday morning tasting around twenty chocolates, all different quality, and with differing  amounts of cocoa matter and butter. We were told to describe each piece in terms of taste and texture. Which, I learned is surprisingly hard when usually all it takes is "good" or "bad". A nice sugar high for the morning. 

Still loving school. 


Snooky doodle said...

I always have trouble with pastry. In fact I don t do much tarts well rarely I do them . My pastry always tears to bits and I end up doing a jigsaw puzzle in the pan to try to cover up the whole surface. I m not a great chef eh . This tart looks yummy. :)

rhid said...

Ha! I always kinda squashed my dough in the pan using a 1/4 measuring cup. But I never really knew how to roll out the dough. This week in class we got a crash course into rolling dough, so it's been hard but I think it's makin' some more sense now!

Haley said...

I can't wait until my class starts working with the various doughs! I really hope we get to do some chocolate tasting as well! That sounds fun! Nice to meet you as well!