It’s been about three months since I made my entrance into the fantastic world of the Web, and every day I receive some small, or occasionally big, satisfaction. I have often read and heard “the segment is saturated”, “there are more bloggers than recipes”, “it is difficult to make a name for oneself” and so on … but I always felt a certain insensitivity towards these topics.
I do this because I like it and I enjoy it; sometimes on my own, sometimes with close friends. I do not aspire to teach, there are plenty of excellent chefs who do that! I invest time and money looking for Goodness and Beauty: I read, pick, try, experiment, learn and share; I get to know people with the same passion and all this is very satisfying…. Is it a tribute to banalities or a premise for a recipe? … And if it was a tribute to simple things, but of value? I’m enjoying the last few days off, lulled into dilated rhythms so rare they become precious, and maybe I am already feeling nostalgic for what will soon disappear. I found myself thinking about the suggestions received, the feedback from people who somehow gravitate in various ways around my new world. All useful, precious ideas; so many recipes I’d like to try, and always the usual struggle: I need more time. So I decided to start from the comment that resonated more with me: “Luci, nice blog, but the recipes you write about are difficult and it takes time …” And it’s true! But you know what? This recipe is a pleasant exception (the original video here). Do you know how to peel an apple? Do you know how to use a whisk? Then this post is for you! I almost forgot: I do not know if Michalak, who, at the time was chef patissier at the Plaza Athénée in Paris, would dare to call it like that …
1. Sablés Bretons are butter-based biscuits that are interesting to the palate thanks to a pinch of fleur de sel. Choose high quality butter. Typically they are quite high and crunchy. For these mini Tatin it’s preferable to make a slightly softer biscuit, so that they can easily be cut with a fork. To achievethis, you need to beat the mixture with the electric whip to make it more airy (thanks to the French blogger Valérie of C’est ma Fournée for the suggestion and the perfect version of the sablés). If you prefer a small dessert with a crunchy base, beat egg yolks and sugar with a hand whisk.
2. Sablés Bretons are normally first cut and then cooked in individual ring molds. If you do not have them, you can create the discs by cutting them from the cooked dough, using a cutter of the same dimensions than the apple domes. Roll out the dough on a silpat or on baking paper and cook it.
Once baked, gently press the cutter to obtain the circles. They can also be frozen for future use. This is a delicious base when paired with creams, such as Chantilly, or with fruits.
3. I chose to create individual portions of about 7 cm diameter, but if you want a dessert mignon you can use the hemispheres of 3 cm diameter and a ring cutter of the same size. You will get some beautiful tatin mignon.
4. The Michalak version combines the tatin with crème fraîche, a type of sour-tasting cream, very compact. It can be found in many supermarkets. I opted for a whipped cream produced in the mountains, sprinkled with ground cinnamon. Later I also tested a version with the diplomat cream. If you want to try it, follow this recipe for the custard, make it lighter with some whipped cream and pour into a piping bag. Place a large enough knob of cream on the biscuit base, add the frozen apple dome on top, then complete with a dollop of chantilly. A richer and much more indulgent dessert.
2 wide and shallow pans
manual mixer or whisk or food mixer
Non-stick silicone mold, hemisphere 7 cm diameter (or other measure of your choice)
steel ring of the same diameter of the hemisphere
INGREDIENTS & METHOD
For 6 servings
For the Sablés Bretons
2 egg yolks
75 g icing sugar
75 g softened butter
100 g weak flour
5 g baking powder
1 pinch of fleur de sel
Sift together flour and baking powder in a bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, place the egg yolks and icing sugar and whisk together until the mixture is white and fluffy. Stir in the softened butter and mix well.
Pour the sifted powders onto the egg yolks mixture and incorporate with a spatula. Then add the salt, mix well and pour on a baking sheet. Flatten the dough well (it will be very soft) and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour to firm up.
In the meantime you can prepare the apple domes.
Once the dough is chilled and ready, preheat the oven to 170 ° C in fan-assisted mode. Remove the dough from the refrigerator, roll it out with a rolling pin between two sheets of parchment paper, until it’s about 4.3 mm thick. Bake for about 20 minutes. When cooked, remove the disc and cut the bases using a ring of the same diameter of the hemispheres.
For the caramelised apple domes
4 Golden Delicious apples
50 g acacia or wildflower honey
30 g butter
100g caster sugar
45 g cream
2 gelatine leaves
Peel the apples, remove core and stem and cut them into small cubes and set aside.
In a large pan, put the honey and butter and let it melt. When the mixture is melted and starts to form small bubbles, add the apples and stir.
Cook the apples over low heat until they are shiny and soft. Turn off the heat and set aside.
Soak the gelatine leaves in cold water.
Heat the cream for a few seconds in the microwave or on the cooker.
Pour half of the sugar in a large pan so that the surface is well covered. Heat up the pan until the sugar melts. Add the remainder of the sugar and let it melt. Do not mix with any tool: it will be enough to tilt the pan to facilitate the dissolution.
When the caramel turns to a beautiful amber color, remove the pan from the heat and pour the cream. Be careful to the steam that will result! Stir and add the gelatine, after you’ve squeezed the water out. Continue to mix until you have a smooth caramel sauce with no granules.
Finally add the apples and make sure that all are well covered with caramel.
Pour the caramelized apples in the silicone mold. Let cool, then place in the freezer for at least 3 hours before removing them from the mold.
Approximately 2 hours before serving, remove the apple domes from the silicone mold, and put them onto the sablés Breton to thaw.
Garnish with a dollop of crème fraiche, whipped cream or diplomat cream.