Saturday, March 27, 2010

Daring Bakers: Orange Tian

The 2010 March Daring Baker’s challenge was hosted by Jennifer of Chocolate Shavings. She chose Orange Tian as the challenge for this month, a dessert based on a recipe from Alain Ducasse’s Cooking School in Paris.

This was my first official month with the Daring Bakers.  Most desserts I have done in my life are cookies or cakes. I'd take chocolate over any kind of fruit dessert any day, but this was a fun challenge. There were a number of different elements to this dessert: the pate sablee, marmalade, caramel, and orange segments.
Pate Sablee: I discovered that my rolling pin mat was ruined. For some reason I must have put it back wet and when I pulled it out there was mold all over it. Yuck! I've been rolling out dough on my counter which works, but is quite messy. Clean up is kind of a pain. Once water and flour mix, I have nothing but paste all over my counter. I used too much flour in rolling out this dough and it became flaky quickly. It's just something I need more practice at.

Marmalade: This was my first time making marmalade too. It came out pretty well, although it wasn't as thick as I thought it would be. I'm not sure if I didn't get the proportions right or if I didn't cook it down enough. This recipe only calls for a small amount of marmalade so I'll be enjoying the rest of my marmalade on scones and bread for awhile.

Orange Segments: I didn't like oranges as a kid. It wasn't the flavor. I didn't like peeling them and I didn't like the texture of the membranes with the flesh. It would take me hours to eat an orange because I'd always peel all the membranes off. Why didn't I learn how to do segments! (It would sure help with lemons and grapefruits too.)

Caramel: Tricky! I think I did it right, but I was a bit distracted during the making of it. The directions even warn you to pay close attention if you've never made caramel before. I'll give you two guesses why I was distracted. (Either guess is right.) I think for the purposes of this dessert I did okay since you pour the caramel mixture over the orange segments before the caramel is really set. There is the option to further cook the remaining caramel and pour over the top of the dessert, but I wasn't able to do that on the day we ate them. I'd love to try some more caramel recipes.
The directions call for using 6 round cookie cutters.  I didn't have 6, so I used all the large shapes I had and then a few smaller shapes too, mostly of a Christmas theme. The round cookie cutter was certainly the easiest to work with. It was fun to see the dessert turn out in star and bell shapes though.
All in all, it was fun and they turned out pretty darn good. For the recipe, check out The Daring Kitchen site. (Printable Recipe)

1 comment:

  1. The star-shaped orange tian looks lovely!!! Good job!


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