Saturday, August 2, 2014

French Fridays with Dorie - Gâteau Basque


Today´s recipe for the French Fridays with Dorie group is "Gâteau Basque“. A traditional dessert from the Basque region of France. There are many versions of this buttery tart. But most recipes call for a flaky pastry crust, with or without ground almonds, filled with either cherry jam or vanilla custard, or both.




Since cherry season is all but over here, it was quite the task to find some deep, dark, burgundy-colored cherries for my thick, homemade, Cherry-Vanilla Jam. But we managed to find some - mind you, I could have planed ahead and bought some earlier in the month.  Be that as it may, the first task was transforming the fruit into lovely, not overly sweet, jam, studded with whole fruits and laced with lots of real vanilla using those wonderful and incredibly fragrant, fresh, plump, moist vanilla pods.




While the jam was cooling, I made the buttery pastry for the tart using wheat flour, baking powder, sea salt, really good butter, light brown sugar, white baking  sugar, an egg, and the scraped seeds from a whole vanilla bean  – it is certainly worth making an extra effort and adding fresh vanilla to your recipes, especially when vanilla is one of the primary flavors in a recipe (along, of course, with the butter and the cherries). I also took the liberty and added a pinch of finely grated organic lemon zest to the dough. That always seems to waken up the taste of these buttery tarts.




After the dough has had a chance to cool for a few hours and the jam has cooled as well, it is time to assemble the tart. I took about two-thirds of the pastry, rolled it to about 5mm thick and lined a well- buttered 28cm French tart pan with removeable bottom. Then, I  spooned in the filling, rolled out the remaining pastry and placed it over the top.  All that was left to do was to trim the edges, place in the fridge for a good hour prior to baking and then brush with beaten egg and drag the prongs of a fork over in a tartan pattern.




A caveat or rather word of caution when making a Gâteau Basque - the short pastry often breaks when rolled, but can be patched back together in the tart pan. And another remark - since I used a larger tart pan than the recipe called for and had left some of the cherries whole for jam making, I ended up with a somewhat more "bumpy look" for the tart - according to my whole slew of taste testers, "a delightfully rustic and certainly most delicious, personal touch" - there!




Sometimes all you want in a sweet tart is a clean and quiet flavor, very simple and delicate. And this Gâteau Basque recipe certainly delivers. A nice, simple recipe and not unlike my beloved, traditional Dutch Boterkoek that I posted about two weeks ago –  those that follow my blog know that we always enjoy these kinds of cakes and love to eat them in the late afternoon with a cup of tea (interested, then take a look here).




To see how much the other members of the French Fridays with Dorie group enjoyed this recipe, please go here.

For copyright reasons, we do not publish the recipes from the book. But you can find the recipe for this „Gâteau Basque“ on pages 470-2 in Dorie Greenspan´s "Around my French Table".

You can also consult the website of the Museum dedicated entirely to the Gâteau Basque and find a lovely, traditional French recipe here http://www.legateaubasque.com/la-recette-du-gateau-basque-traditionnel.



43 comments:

  1. That looks wonderful! A classic dish. :) Pinned!

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    1. Thank you, June, this is a classic recipe indeed and quite enjoyable too.

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  2. Fabulous - thank you for sharing! I was first introduced to Gateau Basque when visiting my relatives in the Basque region of France - I haven't had it since. I may give this a go :)

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    1. Ahu, I had never made this classic French treat either - but will make it again soon - it was received rather well at our house! So nice to hear from you - how have you been? Hope all is well!

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  3. I love the scalloped edges that your tart pan added to the gateau. And of course, your homemade cherry-vanilla jam. What a wonderful treat to enjoy, Andrea!

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    1. Betsy, that is very kind of you - thank you - well, that homemade cherry-vanilla jam is quite delicious but not all that difficult to make. Since we do eat rather savory things for breakfast around here, I make jams mostly when I need a filling for a cake or cookies.

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  4. Hi Andrea, oh I know that this would be a favorite around my house, love the care and time you put into this.

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    1. Cheri, "mit Liebe gemacht" - "made with lots as love" - as always! Thank you for stopping by!

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  5. looks wonderful, and I'm sure your jam is divine!

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    1. Thanks, Steph, the jam is nice wth all that vanilla - we do not eat of lot of jams but every once in a while I will make a very small batch for special cookies and cakes.

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  6. Love all the fine tuning of your GB - absolutely stunning!

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    1. Emily, thank you! Glad you enjoy the pictures!

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  7. Perfectly lovely with the cherries on top. Love that you made your own jam.

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    1. Sometimes, a little hoemade jam is all a cake needs! Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. Your tart looks amazing. I love that you made the jam for it - with the vanilla! YUM!!

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    1. Candy, well, since I did not make a ton (not many fresh cherries left) it wasn´t all that much work but we loved, loved the combinatin of cherry and vanilla and it went so well with the cake.

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  9. We loved this one too. I am impressed you made your own jam.

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    1. Diane, well jam making isn´t all that exciting but it tasted really wonderful as the filling for the tart.

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  10. This is so beautiful - and I have been wanting to try it ever since I heard about it on National Public Radio. I will be finding some cherry jam soon (or making some) so that I can give this a try. I love that you made it in a tart pan - I really think the crimped edges are beautiful. Did you grow your own cherries? Liebe Grüße aus von regnerischem Tucson! (Wir haben den Regen gern.) ~ David

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    1. Lieber David, we do have a cherry tree in our garden and it had the most wonderfuil fruit but, alas, season is over and I it took me quite a while to find some more for jam making. But I did and I bought enough so that a few of them can even grace my birthday cake on the weekend! The leaves on the pictures are from our cherry tree!
      Thank you for stopping by and viele liebe Grüss an dich und Mark!
      Andrea - love rain too...soothing, especially at night and especially for insomniacs like me

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  11. As always, your photos are so beautiful. It's like looking through a little door in Alice in Wonderland. Shame I can't get in.

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    1. Gaye, now that is a wonderful and kind comment - thank you very much - next time you are touring Germany, do make sure to drop by Bonn or Cologne and we will gladly share our cakes with you!

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  12. It looks gorgeous Andrea! And cherries in any preparation are such a favorite of mine! It's similar to one we make here with ricotta filling.

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    1. Paula, so nice to see that you are back - how have you been . hope life has been treating you well! Yes, cherries are special no matter how many ways you present them or enjoy them!

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  13. Using the tart pan resulted in a very lovely presentation. I am sure the cherry jam was delightful with this.

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    1. Cher, that French tart pan has benn put to good use lately - the only regret I have is not having bought "a back-up" when I had the chance. Thank you for dropping by!

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  14. LOVE all those gorgeous cherry juices, Andrea! And like Cher mentioned, your tart pan made for the most gorgeous presentation!

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    1. Liz, thank you so much - sadly, cherry season is almost over, almost.

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  15. Love the cherry juices ozing from the tart .. Wonderfully presented!

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    1. Deepti, so kind of you. Glad that you enjoy the presentation!

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  16. That cherry vanilla jam sounds divine!! And looks so good oozing out of the tart.

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    1. Thrishie, than you very much - cannot go wrong with that Cherry Vanilla Jam. Nothing beats makeing a small batch at home with real vanilla and the last of the season´s crop of sweet cherries.

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  17. Die Kirschenmarmelade sieht fantastisch aus, was für ein Glücksfall, daß Du noch so prachtvolle Kirschen gefunden hast, Andrea.
    Ich bin völlig Deiner Meinung, was die Zutaten betrifft.
    Feinste Butter macht feinsten Kuchen, aber natürlich nur in talentierten Händen :)
    Alles Liebe aus Lima
    Daniela

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    1. Liebe Daniela - wie geht es euch denn so? Dir Kirschsaison ist fast vorbei, jedenfalls haben wir keine mehr im Garten - aber mann kann noch welche kaufen. Gute Butter scheint das A und O dieser Art Kuchen zu sein - ich habe da so einen netten Hofladen aufgetan, die verkaufen da frische Butter von ihrem Bauernhof und immer wenn ich damit meine Butterkuchen backe, habe ich das Gefühl, dass die noch eine wenig besser schmecken - wer kann schon Nein sagen zu einem Stück Butterkuchen mit frischer Butter vom Hof?!
      Herzlichen Dank für deinen lieben Kommentar und liebe Grüsse nach Lima,
      Andrea

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  18. Your homemade dark cherry vanilla jam sounds incredible. I bet it would make anything taste good. I love desserts like these in the afternoon. What a great snack. I hope you all have a great weekend!

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    1. Jora, thank you, yes, the dark cherry vanilla jam is nice and I will make sure to make a bit more next year when cherry sason will be upon us again. And these cakes are indeed the best to serve in the afternoon wth a lovely cup of tea - I have a lot of these types of recipes on the blog because these are are favorite cake recipes of all times.

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  19. I will eat your bumpy tarts anytime, Andrea. Your filling looks so dark and rich. I like the fact you used a tart pan rather than just a round pan. It makes the gateaulook like such an elegant dessert. Not too sweet, that's what I really enjoyed the most about it. I'll just bet your taste tasters loved that tart.

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    1. Mary, bumpy and all is what makes this tart look homemade and rustic and just right for serving it in the late afternoon on one of those lazy-hazy days of summer! Thank you for your kind words!

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  20. delectable, sweet, devour-able crust :) xxx

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    1. Kim, thank you very much, dear - hope all is well!

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  21. What a delicious tart…so very different from the cherry pies that you see here during the summer. Karen

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    1. Karen, that´s so trus - a French treat of a cookie-like-cake. My family enjoyed it and I loved having an excue to finally make that thick Cherry-Vanilla Jam.

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  22. I love your take on this recipe - your additions sound delicious. And the cherry-vanilla jam just screams summer!

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