Monday, 26 March 2012

Frangipane filling for tarts, danishes, pies or pastries!

So I started my pastry course a few weeks ago - we have already made Creme Patissiere, Frangipane Filling, Puff Pastry, Cheese Twists, Pithiviers, Palmiers, Choux Pastry, Profiteroles, Croquembouche, Eclairs, Mille Feuilles, Italian Meringue, Cream Horns, and the list goes on. Suffice to say that those at home have been very happy with the piles of pastry that enter the house in friday evenings.

My favourite thing so far that we have learnt to make is Frangipane filling, which is often used in tarts and danishes. I have always been a big fan of Frangipane and who knew it was so simple to make!

We made a batch in the class I teach last saturday, and for lack of time we just used pre-bought tart shells, filled and baked with the frangipane filling and frozen raspberries. I will post some pastry recipes in the future if you would like to make your own pastry base, but for now I will start with the filling. You can also use this filling for Pithiviers, wrapped in puff pastry. You can do anything you like really! I love this stuff.

Frangipane Filling
From The Cook's Book: Patisserie by Loretta Sartori

85 grams of butter
140 grams of sugar
90 grams of almond meal
1/2 lemon, juice and zest
pinch of salt
100g egg (2 x 55 g eggs)
45 grams plain flour
45 grams cornflour

1. Lightly cream butter, sugar, almond meal, juice, zest and salt.
2. Add eggs individually, mixing until absorbed.
3. Stir in the sieved flours, mixing only until combined. 

Use at room temperature. Can refrigerate for up to 7 days, freeze for up to 3 months.

Once you have mixed your filling, go wild with your imagination! Theses are some of my favourite combinations:

Replace the lemon with lime and make a boat shape from a sheet of puff pastry, twisting the ends and filling the centre with the frangipane. Topp with sliced almonds and bake until pastry is golden and flaky, and frangipane is set.

Either buy or make mini sweet pastry tart shells, fill with frangipane, and completely cover the top with defrosted frozen raspberries. Press raspberries (or any other type of berries) down into the frangipane so the tops are flat. Bake in the oven until frangipane is set.

Cut two circles out of puff pastry and a long strip. Using a little water and a pastry brush, shape the strip into a circle and stick onto one of the pastry circles to create an outer wall. Fill the inside with frangipane and a filling of your choice; berries, caramelised bananas, slices of pear sprinkled with brown sugar, chopped pecans - the possibilities are endless! Using the wet pastry brush, brush the top of the 'wall' and the underside of your other pastry circle, place on top like a lid and using your finger and thumb press the pastry together to create a seal. Bake in the oven until the pastry is golden and flaky.

Pipe frangipane onto well oiled baking paper and bake in the oven until set. Cut into pieces and use as a 'sandwich' filling for profiteroles, eclairs, or even crepes!