One more day, and I will officially bid farewell to my corporate jobs. It’s a mixed feeling actually; there’s immeasurable fear in my heart since the future is uncertain, but on the other hand, I am excited about a new journey. As I was clearing my vacation leaves for the past few days, I made some almond tarts, a classic French pastry. There are basically two components in the recipe: tart dough and almond cream. I love the fragrance of almond filling so much, and they taste heavenly when coupled with the crunchiness of sliced almonds on top.
Watch how to make the French Almond Tart
Ingredients (yield about 17 tarts, 6cm diameter)
(A) Tart dough
Cake flour 150g
Icing sugar 50g
Ground almond 20g
Butter (cold) 85g
(B) Almond cream
Salt 1/4 tsp
Vanilla extract 1 tsp
Ground almond 80g
Plain flour 1 Tbsp
(C) Fillings & Toppings
Blueberry jam (or any jam of your choice)
Strawberry jam (store bought) 1 Tbsp
Mirror gel 2 tsp
- To make the tart dough. Sieve cake flour, icing sugar and ground almond into a mixing bowl.
- Add cold butter cubes to the flour mixture. Rub in the butter using finger tips, until the mixture resembles bread crumbs.
- Add in the egg, and mix until the dough just comes together.
- On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until it is just smooth. Do not over knead. Flatten the dough, and refrigerate for an hour.
- Take the tart dough out from the chiller, and let it soften slightly before rolling into a sheet of about 6mm thick. I like to roll the tart dough in between baking papers or cling film so that it won’t stick to the work surface.
- Cut the pastry into desired size. Without stretching, gently place the pastry into the tins. Press down with your fingers to evenly cover the side and the bottom of the tins. Trim off any excess pastry.
- Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- To make the almond cream. Cream the butter (soften), sugar and salt until light and pale. Add in vanilla extract and mix to combine.
- Add the egg gradually to the butter mixture, and ensure they are well mixed after each addition.
- Sieve the ground almond and plain flour into the mixture, and mix.
- Transfer the almond cream to a piping bag.
- To prepare the almond tart. Spoon some blueberry jam (about 1 tsp) on the tart case, followed by the almond cream.
- Fill to about 70% full. Do not fill too much, as the almond cream will expand when baked.
- Sprinkle some sliced almond on top.
- Baked at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden and the fillings are cooked.
- To prepare for the strawberry glaze, mix the strawberry jam with the mirror gel. You may sieve the glaze to remove larger bits of strawberry, if any.
- Once baked and cooled for about 10 minutes, remove the tarts from the tins. With a pastry brush, apply a thin layer of strawberry glaze on the tarts while they are still warm.
- When the tarts are fully cooled, dust with some snow powder as decorations.