Hazelnut Tartelettes With Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait

Friday, January 09, 2009

Hazelnut Tartelettes With Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait

We all procrastinate at one point or another, and we all have different ways to go about that. B. for example will spend an hour doing dishes and cleaning up the kitchen (which I will mess up in 2 seconds flat) before grading papers. The other day he suggested we put down the Christmas tree and decorations. Like a kid who does not want to go back to school, it makes me sad to take the decorations down and to realize it will be "one whole year" before Christmas. As soon as his back was turned I started cleaning and reorganizing the pantry instead. It needed it after the holidays when a bunch of things started to get shoved in there due to lack of time, focus and general "I'll deal with it after the holidays"...so you see I was actually working my end of the deal.

In that little pantry winter cleaning, I reorganized the nuts and spices and set a bunch aside feeling inspired by some hazelnuts, cardamom, nutmeg, star anise, cloves...the scent was intoxicating. The perfect post holiday antidote: more seasonal winter spices. I made a pomander with some of the cloves, mixed some cardamon with Meyer lemon zest and sugar and that's when it hit me... hard... I just wanted to eat it... the bowl... of spiced lemon sugar.

Hazelnut Tartelettes With Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait

So I procrastinated some more and made some sable breton dough with lemon zest in it and baked large cookie to use as bases for tartelettes. I shelled enough hazelnuts to make a variation on my beloved's beloved pecan tart, with honey and cloves. I still had other spices dancing in my head and in front of my nose that I made a quick spiced creme fraiche frozen parfait to top the tarts with. Let's face it, pies, tarts, tartelettes, are good..even "naked" but a little ice cream does not really hurt either.

After lunch, B. started again with his desire to put away the decorations, push the furniture back where it was before we moved everything for Christmas dinner. My philosophy is furniture belongs where it feels good, where you are comfortable...and right then, right there in a quiet afternoon with a bright sunbeam coming through the window...it felt good. So I got up. And I went to the kitchen. Again. I put some sugar and water in a pan and I make caramel, and I played with sugar, making caramel twirls to decorate the tarts with, procrastinating a little longer. I made four tarts and we have been sharing one every night for dessert, so yes..."we" have been staring at the Christmas decorations for four days...Bliss...I could not make up my mind for the pictures I like best, so you get them all...oops!

In The Beginning...

Hazelnut Tartelettes With Spice Creme Fraiche Parfait:

Serves 4

Sable base:
1/2 stick (65 gr) butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons (25gr) sugar
2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest (or regular lemon)
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
3/4 cup (105gr) all purpose flour
pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350F. In a mixer, cream the butter, sugar and lemon zest together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until combined. Add the flour and salt and mix briefly to incorporate. Dump the mixture onto a lightly floured board and gather the dough into a smooth ball. Do not work the dough while in the mixer or it will toughen up. Flatten the dough into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour. When the dough is nice and cold, roll it out to 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured board or in between the sheets of plastic. You will have extra dough that you can save for another use in the fridge for up to 5 days or frozen, well wrapped for up to 3 months.
Cut out four 4-inch disks into the dough and place them on a parchment lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Let cool.

Hazelnut Tartelettes Recipe:
1 egg
1/2 cup (110gr)dark brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup (85gr) honey
pinch of salt
1 tablespoon (15gr) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup (86gr) chopped hazelnuts

Preheat the oven to 275F.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg, dark brown sugar and honey until fully combined. Add the salt and butter and fold in the nuts with a spatula.
Grease four 3 inch tartlet shells and fill with the batter. Or, place four 3 inch tart rings on a parchment paper line baking sheet (I wrap the rings with foil to make sure the batter does not sneak out) and divide the batter evenly among them.
Bake for 30 minutes or until set and firm. Let cool. Run a knife along the edges of the tartlet shells and unmold carefully. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait:
1/8 grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground green cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground star anise
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2 eggs, separated
6 tablespoons (75gr) sugar, divided
3/4 cup (175gr) creme fraiche (or sour cream)
1/4 cup (60gr) heavy cream

In a stand mixer or handheld mixer, combine the spices, egg yolks and 3 tablespoons of the sugar and whisk until pale and thick, about 3 minutes. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they have firm peaks, add the remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar, one at a time, until the egg whites are glossy. With a spatula, hold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture, working carefully not to deflate the batter. Wipe the bowl where the whites were with a paper towel and whip the creme fraiche and heavy cream together until thick, about 2 minutes. Fold this into the egg batter.
Line a 8x11 inch baking pan with plastic wrap and pour in the parfait batter. Smooth the top with a spatula. Freeze until firm, about 1 hour.

To serve the tartelettes: place a nut tart on the cookie base and top with the spiced creme fraiche parfait. Serve at once.

Hazelnut Tartelettes With Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait

77 comments:

David said...

For a moment, I thought that was a strip of bacon alongside.

Très américain!
; )

FeeMail said...

This Spiced Creme Fraiche Parfait sounds so damn delicious...

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Really elegant and so scrumptious looking! Yummy!

cheers,

Rosa

Christy said...

A tart for dinner for the past 4 days? Sounds like heaven!!

I don't want the holidays to be over either...and I'm starting back at work next week....boo hoo!!

I like all of them photos!!

Happy cook said...

WOw it looks beautiful and delicious.

Giorgia said...

hello tartelette. I discovered you thanks to Comida de Mama.
I love your blog and your receipts, and I will try to copy some of them... can I suggest you to add an index if you have never thought to it? because there are so many receipts... anyway, maybe you have already thought to it and decided not to add, it rests a beautiful blog.
by
giorgia

Aran said...

cleaning the pantry is one of my favorite things to do but it might be months before I do it sometimes. why is that? maybe i'm scared to find something in there? but it makes me feel so good afterwards... we still have our wreaths up on our doors. talk about procrastinating!

lemon, hazelnuts and creme fraiche? oh my! i'm coming over!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

I allways love when tartelette does tartelettes!

joanne at frutto della passione said...

What a gorgeous presentation! I love the flavour combinations and the creme fraiche is a brilliant touch. I'm celebrating my 1st anniversary today, stop by for a visit if you can, and bring these tarts!!

nadia said...

i love the pictures helen- really beautiful vignetes and it does sound very tasty!

juliette c. said...

Another evidence of your art!

Y said...

Lovely! You should definitely procrastinate more often, if this is the end result ;) I love reorganising my pantry too, by the way!

Philo said...

L'espèce de spirale au caramel (?) donne une superbe allure à ce dessert !

Cherie said...

anything with creme fraiche sounds good to me, and this piece of crunchiness here is just perfect.

VeggieGirl said...

Stunning as always, dear Helen!! :-)

Manggy said...

Hey, if this is what comes out of procrastination, I don't mind if you never take down your decorations till it's Christmas again! ;) I love the unique presentation-- you rarely see these semi-nude tarts :)

Candace said...

Fabulous! This looks wonderful!

Tania said...

They look devine. You are awfully creative and the decorating of the plates and tarts is genius. I can only hope to be so talented one day.

Bake On!
Tania

cindy : quaint said...

it looks so delicious and i love that caramel swirl. the last photo is awesome, but then they all are :).

LyB said...

So beautiful! I don't mind that you put all the pics in your post, they're all fabulous. Those caramel twirls, wow, I wish I could work caramel like that! :) I only took down my decorations last night. Like you, I was procrastinating. The house feels a little less warm this morning. Oh, well, until next year, I guess. :)

Hilda said...

We have been known to leave decorations up in our house for several months, until spring actually, so the procrastinators' society is alive and well over here. Those are just gorgeous and sound delicious Helene, especially with the caramel twirls.

Bridget said...

I wish my procrastination looked like this!!!

The Italian Dish said...

Maybe I will have the guts to try those caramel twirls - so delicate and pretty! Gorgeous post, as always.

anna said...

Oh wow, how did you even make those twirls? They look like little springs!

Anonymous said...

...

That's me...completely speechless and in awe of your creations. Wow! That's a casual dessert at your house? I am coming over!!

Jolene

Cafe Johnsonia said...

Glorious! Oh, how I wish I had one ounce of your creativity and inspiration. Each one of your posts is such a treat to look at.

Joyce said...

Helen- I like your approach slow and savory the moment! I also would have preferred being in the kitchen instead of taking down the deocorations. All your photos are beautiful! xoxo

Char said...

your recipes - delish....but your exposures, especially the whites - blow me away. gorgeous and simple = glorious

Anonymous said...

This is the new fasion now-a-days in restaurants: a cookie, some topping and decoration. I am still disapointed when the they call it a tart.

lisa (dandysugar) said...

If a little bit of procrastination creates a beauty like this, I should do it more often! Intoxicating aromas, indeed.
Our Christmas tree is still up too, by the way. I'll be sad to see it go!

Tartelette said...

Anonymous: I am sorry you feel that way. I would call it a deconstructed tart as it has all the element of the tart but baked and set separately. Pastry plating is really a matter of interpretation.

Thank you everyone!

Rita said...

Helen, the photos are so beautiful! I specially like the one with the ingredients, and like David, I also thought I saw a piece of bacon strip..:)
Taking down the tree is always sad, but then again, when next Christmas comes, we'll say "oh, the year went buy so fast..."

Jen Yu said...

Dude, you so rock the plating and decorations. I want you to make my life pretty like that :) I will trade you chinese dumplings for some of your lovely pastries.

I'm sorry I've been so lame about commenting! I promise to get back on it once I'm done with the overhaul!! xxoo

Kosenrufu mama said...

it looks delicius !!!! your pictures are wonderful!

Mallory Elise said...

gorgeous!! oh and i saw these photos on flickr before you even posted, so i had a nice guessing game and thought, hehehe i know what she's doing next! anyways,

i've decided that hazelnut is rather french nut, god every biscuit, every cake, every packaged or non packaged treat found in paris is hazelnut of some sort or another.

at my parents house, we moved all the furniture and took down all the decorations on new years day. yep, new year, new look. my mom is very meticulous.

Jessica said...

How bizarre. I was looking for a hazelnut tart recipe about an hour ago and didn't come across anything that sounded remotely decent. Just by chance I thought I would check your blog and see if you had made anything similar awhile back and what do you know, your most recent entry is exactly what I was looking for! Thank you so much for posting this. I'm really excited to make it tonight! :)

Karyne said...

tes photos sont absoluement magnifiques! bravo!

That Girl said...

ice cream on tarts always helps all the flavors come together in a nice little package.

Aran said...

Anonymous- I don't understand why you feel disappointed. There is nothing disappointing about it. The elements are the same, the flavors are the same, the texture the same... just a different visual and shape. And also, this is not a restaurant trend. If you check out any decent pastry shop, you will see many tarts composed this way with a sable base, a custard and fruit on top.

Tiffany said...

As always, just beautiful! Very inspiring.

Hillary said...

Happy new year Tartelette! You are so artistic when it comes to desserts.

Brooke said...

Procrastination must be on everyone's mind this week! I love the recipe and I love the insights! What a beautiful blog!

Nawal said...

Bonjour,
Quelque soit l'heure de la journée ou mon degrés de satiété, c'est toujours un plaisir de se perdre ici !

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

I'm happy to see all of those photos. They're all beautiful. It's a beautiful dessert (as always). I am a big hazelnut fiend.

Sorry about not getting those decorations down, but it looks so worth the procrastination.

MeetaK said...

this is so gorgeous! I love the idea very much because it is somewhere between a cookie and a dessert!

Seanna Lea said...

That looks amazing!

I have never seen tart rings, so I'll have to go out looking for them. My husband would love this (and I love the idea of sharing).

lynda said...

Thank you for visiting my blog yesterday. I just love yours! Your photos are gorgeous!I love your little hazelnut tartelettes, too. The caramel swirl is so delicate and a perfect touch. Thanks for sharing your talent! I can't wait to see more! Bonne Annee!

Lori said...

Funny I imagine you a little kid, "No I wont put away the Christmas decorations, instead I will bake, I will bake and I will bake some more". Very endearing.

Always a sight to behold.

elly said...

Oh wow this sounds so good! I am a fan of anything with those spices in it, but add hazelnuts to the mix and you've really won my heart!

toontz said...

Simply beautiful, each and every photo. I will do the same thing when faced with a chore I do not want to do...it drives the hubby nuts! lol

Kevin said...

Those look good. Great presentation!

C&H said...

Ok, so if we come on sunday night for a short visit, we'll have those...right?right?...please say yes!
Gorgeous photographs!

kellypea said...

I *just* took down our tree yesterday, but the ornaments are waiting alongside oodles of boxes. Not quite nostalgic -- more like lazy! I'm fascinated with that caramel spring looking thing and wondering how you made it...When do we get to see your book?

Marc @ NoRecipes said...

I know what you mean about procrastination. I should be looking for a job, but I've been using my blog to procrastinate. But then I'd rather be experimenting in the kitchen with some new ideas I picked up during my trip, so I end up procrastinating from my procrastination. This looks fantastic and I could have sworn I saw a piece of bacon sitting on the plate.

Anonymous said...

Gaston Lenotre est décédé jeudi soir.peux-tu voir l'émission de C dans l'air sur France5 qui lui était consacré. J'ai enlevé les decos et le sapin hier et aujourd'hui. Bravo pour ce que tu as fait et tes magnifiques photos. Mam

CY Phang said...

Oh my...sounds like a lot of work but definitely looks very tempting!

myfrenchkitchen said...

Exquisite!
Ronell

MC said...

Tes photos sont superbes ! Ce devait être exquis... Une jolie façon de dire adieu à la saison des fêtes.

Vanillaorchid said...

They are really fantastic. The way you decorate always perfect.

Vanillaorchid said...

They are really fantastic. The way you decorate always perfect.

Mary said...

Oh I like all your photos! Those tartlettes are so pretty! And I have both Nativity Scenes up because I can't find the boxes to put them in. (That may just be an excuse.)

I'm trying to make macarons today!

Em said...

I was just thinking about Sable! It just popped into my mind last night and I was looking for a recipe. What a great coincidence!

eleonora said...

Your blog is super. So are your photographies. They make me hungry. I have spent a nice moment when seeing them. Thanks a lot.

Lisa said...

Helen, I'm always awed by your unbelievable talent and skill in pastry! Although mine will never turn out as stunning as yours, I cannot wait to tackle these tarts when I can walk again! Thanks for being such an inspiration!

Lisa said...

Helen, I'm always awed by your unbelievable talent and skill in pastry! Although mine will never turn out as stunning as yours, I cannot wait to tackle these tarts when I can walk again! Thanks for being such an inspiration!

Bonbon Oiseau said...

i love the little upward "whizzz"!
these are incredible!

Alisa said...

That hazelnut tartelette portion is calling out my name!

Dana McCauley said...

Stunning sugar work!

letscookandbake.blogspot.com said...

Thank you for visiting my blog, it's my pleasure to know you and your art work, all was perfect and beautiful!!

cindy* said...

i know all about procrastinating as well lady! gorgeous tarts and i say you should make them any way you please. how could we have so many different blogs if we all stuck to the same old conventions? lovely as always helen!

Gretchen Noelle said...

This looks and sounds so delicious!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Did somebody say something about a recipe, because I simply can't take my eyes off those pics.

linda said...

Pretty, elegant and delicious!

Peabody said...

Busting out the caramel curls...nice.

nicisme said...

You must have so much self-control to share "one" every night!
And there you go with the spun sugar again!

Brilynn said...

Your pictures are always so gorgeous. This sounds wonderful. I really need to work on my sugar skills... or lack thereof...

Fifi Flowers said...

AMAZING! Your photos are fab! And I'm sure everything tastes divine! I would be willing to try it all and give you a review daily ;)
Hope all is well with YOU! How is your book coming?
ENJOY!
Fifi

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