Tartine cookbook - I know what I'm baking this weekend - unfortunately not morning buns
Talk about disappointment! My copy of the Tartine cookbook arrived today and I opened it with great anticipation, hoping to finally learn the secret to their fantastic morning buns. Sadly, there is no mention of morning buns therein (although there is a photo of a whole tray of them). However, there are recipes for croissants (including frangipane and ham & cheese variations), brioche bread pudding, quiche, and other assorted goodies. I can't wait to start baking!
let me know what you like best because I just got it as a gift. Quite excited to try it out as well.
So far all the recipes I tried are winners. Rather than focus on one complicated recipe, I baked a few simpler things. A lot of the recipes have an interesting twist on the standard version of the recipe. Here's what I made:
Bostock - This is like glorified French toast. I had never had it before (and haven't seen it at Tartine bakery), but it sounded so good I had to try it. It is thick slices of brioche brushed with orange syrup, spread with apricot jam, then almond cream, sprinked with sliced almonds, baked, and dusted with powdered sugar. It was a good recipe for testing the cookbook because I had to make orange syrup, almond cream, and pastry cream (needed for almond cream) - and technically also brioche, except I cheated and bought a loaf. Despite the many components, I was able to make it for breakfast Sunday morning. Delicious.
Brioche Bread Pudding - This is a big seller at the bakery. I halved the recipe and baked it in an 8" metal loaf pan (the full recipe is baked in a 9" glass loaf pan, which I don't have - I only have metal). The book recommends serving it with fruit sauteed in butter and caramel. So I made the caramel recipe too, which was not difficult, but does call for corn syrup, lemon juice, and butter in addition to sugar, water, and cream. It makes a firmer caramel which might harden too much if you put it on ice cream. But it was great with berries and bread pudding. We had half for dessert and the rest for breakfast (sliced and pan-fried, with more warm berries).
Banana Bread with Dates and Walnuts - Again, more twists: adding dates, and topping the cake with sliced banana and sugar. Unfortunately, the sliced banana on top caused the bread to sink slightly in the center, but there were no unbaked spots. The bread itself was delicious and the banana/sugar topping supplies an additional sweet note.
Brownies - At the bakery these are called Scharffen Berger Brownies, so I used Scharffen Berger chocolate - a full pound of it for a 9x13 pan!! Whatever kind of chocolate you use, be sure you like to eat it plain because these brownies taste like the chocolate they're made with. The recipe calls for brown sugar instead of white, which probably adds some caramel notes. They are truly decadent and definitely fudgy, yet much more soft, delicate, and crumbly than you'd expect, although they got firmer after sitting overnight (and I'm sure they'd be much firmer if stored in the refrigerator). Needless to say, these were a huge hit.
I can't wait to try more recipes - and I will have to, since I have leftover pastry cream, almond cream, orange syrup, and caramel.
Theirs is very soft - the secret is lots of custard plus brioche. They bake theirs in a tall pan and don't crowd the bread slices in the pan.
Layer 6 1"-thick lightly toasted brioche slices in buttered pan. For custard, mix 4 cups milk, 8 eggs, 14 Tbsp sugar, 1 1/2 tsp vanilla, and 1/2 tsp salt; strain. Pour custard over bread. If there's too much custard, wait until some of the custard is absorbed and try to add more. Let sit 10 min or even overnight. Cover and bake 1 hr or until custard is set.
Here's what I baked last weekend:
Frangipane Tart (had to use up leftover almond cream) - The recipe does not specify what fruit to use, although it does give suggestions. I used nectarine and blueberries. It was delicious. The flaky pastry dough was probably the flakiest I've ever made (and I used the food processor method). Maybe the ratio of butter is higher? The recipe says it makes 2 9" crusts but actually there's a lot extra. I baked the tart directly on a baking sheet (with silpat) in a flan ring, which the recipe suggests so that the crust gets brown, which it did (and did not get soggy after 3 days in the fridge). The almond cream contains almond slices instead of ground almonds, which adds a nice crunch, but I actually think I prefer ground almonds.
Zucchini Bread with Orange Marmalade and Walnuts - The marmalade adds a bitter note, so it's not your standard zucchini bread. It's a nice variation, but it's not going to replace my standard recipe. The recipe says you can also use apricot jam instead of orange marmalade, so I may try that next. Like most zucchini bread recipes, it calls for oil instead of butter, which means you can mix it up in 5 minutes before the baby gets too sick of sitting in his high chair :)
I'm so excited to hear you've tried the brioche bread pudding. I'm desperate to make it for some house guests this weekend and having been PROMISED my copy would arrive this week, it's still not here! As one cook to another can you get me out of a hole and post the recipe? I'd really appreciate it. I don't know what else to do!