Posts Tagged ‘baking’

Gâteau au Yaourt

gateauauyaourtIn France, the gâteau au yaourt is a true classic and part of the repertoire of all home cooks. There’s a wonderful simplicity about this cake. Even children and the most novice of cooks can make it with excellent results. All of the main ingredients are weighed with a pot of yogurt, hence the name. But the charm of this beautiful yogurt cake is in its tender crumb and versatility. You can flavor it with citrus zest, stir in some fruit or serve it with Nutella or jam. A Twitter friend, Jeremie, suggested stirring in blackberries, assuring me it would be a “taste of heaven”.
Though the cake is suitable for almost all occasions, I like to serve it with tea, on pretty plates with a dollop of  crème fraîche, fresh strawberries and perhaps a few shavings of dark chocolate.
By the way, you can replace the yogurt with sour cream, Greek yogurt or even crème fraîche. All would work beautifully in this cake.
Happy weekend and enjoy!

Note: Check the 20 minutes into the baking time to make sure the cake is not getting to brown. Should that be the case, cover with aluminum foil.

Gâteau au Yaourt
Serves 8

  • 1 pot of yogurt (125 g)
  • 2 pots of all-purpose flour
  • 2 pots of sugar
  • 2 tsps baking powder
  • 3 eggs
  • ¾ pot sunflower oil
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • zest of 1 organic lemon

Preheat oven to 190° C. Lightly grease a 20 cm springform tin, and dust the sides with flour. In a large bowl whisk all of the ingredients until thoroughly mixed and the batter is smooth and satiny. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cake cool on a rack before unmolding.

 

Galette des Rois

galette-des-roisOne of my favorite ways to officially end the holiday season is with a French Three Kings cake, otherwise known as a galette des rois. The delicate treat consists of almond cream slathered between two layers of flaky pastry. It is eaten to celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany on January 6th, though it is available at French bakeries throughout the entire month.
Usually, a figurine (fève) is hidden inside the cake. Tradition says that the youngest person in the household gets under the table and  says who gets which piece. The person who finds the figurine is crowned king or queen for the day. I am happy to say that this year I was crowned queen! And no, I didn’t cheat!
In the past, I always purchased my galette des rois from one of my favorite French bakers here in the Netherlands, Le Fournil de Sébastien, but this year I decided it was time to make my own. And it couldn’t be easier!
Here’s the recipe!
Want to see a video? Click here!

Galette des Rois
Serves 6-8

  • 100g butter, softened
  • 100g sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g almond flour
  • 1 1/2 tsps almond extract
  • 2 28cm circles of puff pastry
  • 1 whisked egg
  • 1 stone figurine, or whole almond
  • 1 tsp apricot jam & 1 tsp water

Line a baking sheet with baking paper. Cream the butter and the sugar using a standing or hand-held mixer. Beat in the eggs one by one. Beat in the almond flour and almond extract. Place one of the pastry circles on the baking sheet and spread the almond cream over the surface, leaving a free edge. Don’t forget to place the figurine on the almond cream. Brush the whisked egg along the edge and cover with the second pastry circle. Seal the edges well with your fingers and then crimp. Brush the galette with beaten egg and place in the fridge for one hour. Preheat the oven to 200C. Remove the galette from the fridge, brush with egg again and carve a nice pattern on the pastry using the back of a knife. Make a few air holes in the pastry. Bake the galette for approximately 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 180C and give the galette an extra 20-25 minutes. Check after about half an hour to see if the galette is not browning too much and cover with foil if necessary. Whisk the jam and water and heat. Brush the cooled galette with the jam. Delicious with a glass of Champagne!

 

 

Tarte aux Poires

tarteauxpoiresLast week I made a French pear tart that had been on my mind for a while. It’s the perfect tart to serve with tea and is very easy to make. I think it’s also a great treat to start the week with! PS: stay tuned because tomorrow I will be sharing my recipe for my galettes des rois — a traditional French Three Kings’ tart which also calls for an almond cream filling.
Here’s the recipe!
Want to see a quick video? Click here!

Tarte aux Poires
Serves 8

  • 1L water
  • 3 tbsps brown sugar
  • 2 small Doyenne du Comice pears, peeled, cored and halved
  • a 28cm circle of puff pastry
  • 100g butter, softened
  • 100g sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g almond flour
  • 1 1/2 tsps almond extract
  • 1 tsp apricot jam & 1 tsp water
  • powdered sugar, to serve

Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 24cm pie pan with the pastry, trimming off the edges using a rolling pin or sharp knife. Place the pan in the fridge. Mix the water with the sugar and bring to the boil. Simmer the pears for approximately 10 minutes and drain well. Cream the butter and the sugar using a standing or hand-held mixer. Beat in the eggs one by one. Beat in the almond flour and almond extract. Slice the cooked pear halves thinly. Spread the almond cream over the pastry. Arrange the pears over the cream and fan them out slightly. Bake the tart for approximately 45 minutes. Check after about half an hour to see if the tart is not browning too much and cover with foil if necessary. Whisk the jam with the water and heat. Brush the tart with the syrup. Allow the tart to cool completely before unmolding. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.

 

Banana-Chocolate Marbled Cake

img_1323Last Sunday we finally put up our Christmas tree. My Dutch hubby would have rather waited until after Sinterklaas, but that would have meant putting up the tree on the 11th of December! Fourteen days before Christmas? No way! Luckily, I convinced him to make an exception, and he agreed.
Our tree is huge! In fact, I think it’s the biggest tree we’ve ever had. It did fit, though, so there was no Griswold-like scene taking place in our living room, thank goodness. I am so happy and grateful that I work from home because that means I can enjoy the tree every single day. The season (and my fully decorated house) has me longing to get baking, make Christmas chutneys and fudge, or hide under my new Christmas blanket while drinking hot chocolate and listening to Christmas music. My schedule, however, is packed to the brim. Between writing for a new magazine and working on the March/April 2017 issue DUTCH, I barely have time to catch my breath, This Monday, however, the hubs took a day off from work to celebrate Sinterklaas, and I went ahead and treated myself to a day of doing absolutely nothing as well — bliss!
I have been so busy, that I even forgot to share a recipe I tried last week: a beautiful banana-chocolate marbled cake. It’s long gone now, but here’s the recipe!
Enjoy your holiday baking!

Banana-Chocolate Marbled Cake
Serves 8-10

  • 130 g soft butter
  • 150 g light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 90g soft cream cheese
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 200 g all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsps pure raw cacao powder
Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a rectangular cake pan with baking paper. Using a hand-held or standing mixer, beat the butter and sugar. Add in the eggs one by one while continuing to beat. Do the same with the cream cheese. Add in the mashed bananas and vanilla extract, and give everything a final whisk. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Fold the dry ingredients through the wet until well incorporated. Add the cacao powder to half of the batter. Pour both batters into the prepared cake pan, marble them with a skewer and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into slices.

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