Switzerland is a beautiful mountainous country. Full of deep, green valleys, beautiful little villages, and famous resorts, it is bordered on the Northwest by France, on the Northeast by Germany and in the South by Italy. Lichtenstein and Austria border it on the East. switzerlandAll of these countries have influenced Switzerland with the people speaking the language of the country they are closest too. This means, there is a not a lot of indigenous Swiss food, although they are well known for the wonderful chocolates and their pastries.

After searching through several cookbooks I finally found a sweet treat that actually originated in Switzerland:

    Engadiner Nusstorte or Caramelized Walnut Pie from the Engadin

The Engadin or Engadine is a long alpine valley located in the canton of Graubünden in southeast Switzerland. It is located in the area that saw, in the 1900s an emergence of a generation of Pastry Cooks who immigrated to all parts of the world and opened Swiss Pastry shops. This pie was probably the invention of on of those great pastry making families or at least so said Nick Malgieri in A Baker’s Tour.

DSC03749Lucky for me, and you, the recipe is actually on Nick’s site – HERE!! How glad I was to find it ’cause it is a LONG recipe.

His, by the way, is beautiful in the book. Mine – not so much. BUT IT IS YUMMY!!!DSC03745But as I finish this post, I am also finishing the last piece – well, except for the quarter in the Freezer – but that is for another day!!!

…Keeps the doctor away! But I know my Doc would come to my house if he knew I was serving Dorie’s Parisian Apple Tartlet for dessert. How easy can one recipe be. Of all the ones I have done so far in Dorie’s Baking: From My Home to Yours, this is the EASIEST ONE YET!!! 3 componants and YOU DON’T HAVE TO MIX/STIR/PROCESS/SWIRL/CRUNCH/BEAT/KNEAD anything. And no pots to clean up!!! – a real plus. AND for those of us who like to scale back – the recipe is for ONE tartlet. Thank You, Dorie!!! And thank you Jessica of My Baking Heart for this choice. Perfect!!!


Put the elements together, popped it into the counter top oven and watched the Magic of Puff Pastry. Yes, People, I actually stood and watched the pastry come alive and puff up around the apples. YES!!! I need a life!!! But usually I use my regular oven and I would feel silly sitting on the floor looking thru’ the window into the oven.

      They were delicate!
      They were warm!
      They were delicious!

I could have left them alone right there, but nnnnooooo I had to make it a teeensy bit harder.

I found some new apples at Krogers – Jazz from New Zealand. They were a little tarter than I am used to (but very, very good)so I knew they would not be sweet in the pastry. I made up a small amount of Brown Sugar Syrup to drizzle on top. JUST RIGHT!!!

    Brown Sugar Syrup

      3/4 cup brown sugar
      3/4 cup water
      1 Tbl corn syrup
      2 Tbl butter

    Mix all ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a hard boil. Reduce to medium heat let simmer until thick.

Come over and have a pastry with me!

Those of us who are members of The Daring Bakers have completed another challenge. For those of you not familiar with this group, each month we are given a baking challenge to complete. Everyone bakes the same thing and at the end of the month we ‘present’ what we baked for the world to see. Some of the challenges have been relatively simple (compared to others). This one wasn’t so easy – at least not for me. This month it was Chocolate Éclairs by Pierre Hermé
from Dorie Greenshpan’s book, Chocolate Desserts By Pierre Hermé. Our hosts were Tony Tahhan and MeetaK.
I was ready for this challenge. I have always wanted to make Eclairs, so this was a great challenge. We had to use the pâte à choux recipe from the recipe given and we had to use chocolate as at least one element. Works for me!
Now we try not to eat a lot of sweets (and I join an online baking group!!!) so I decided to make some mini eclairs instead of the big ones. (That might have been my first mistake.)The dough recipe came together perfectly. I piped some cute little eclairs onto my baking sheet.

Little Bittys

Little Bittys

You can see I got a little creative – some long, some puffs, some circles. I baked them. I cooled them. They were pretty. And then, I SLICED THEM OPEN.Instead of one large cavity, I had lots of little cavities. Now, how am I supposed to fill these…..At least the puffs had nice full openings. As they cooled, they collapsed on the bottom. The next step was to make the pastry cream filling. The recipe was for chocolate, but I wanted something a little different, so I made a light chocolate Peanut Butter Pastry Cream (My second mistake.) It looked good, but the taste wasn’t what I wanted. I plogged on. I did make the chocolate sauce and it was perfect. I put my Little Bittys together. They actually came out pretty well, except for the taste of the Pastry CreamI want to try these again when I have some time. Make regular sized ones. Keep to the regular Pastry Cream. I did enjoy making these tho’.
Filled Itty Bitty

Filled Itty Bitty

Thanks for this one. It definately was a challenge. Bring on the next one – I AM READY!!!

My first Daring Bakers Challenge and it was great fun. I never knew I could make Danish until now. Thanks to Kelly of Sass & Veracity, and Ben of What’s Cookin’? for their hosting of this month’s challenge. It was fun, guys! Anyway, the challenge was to make Danish Dough, and subsequently, Danish. The recipe/technique came from “Danish Braid” from Sherry Yard’s The Secrets of Baking. The recipe was really easy to follow. I read it 3/4 times and then decided it really wasn’t that hard. And it wasn’t.

By the time I rolled the dough out for the 4th time I had enough for two danish so I made two different kinds. The first was Lemon Blueberry. The filling was made with frozen blueberries ( Didn’t have fresh at the time), and home-made Lemon Curd. Recipe follows.

The Dough

    The dough or “Detrempe”.

BeurrageWith the butter block or ‘beurrage’.4th turn

After the 4th turn. dough with cuts

The dough with cuts. And the dough with filling. with fillingbraidedAll braided and ready for the oven. And once it was finished, it looked pretty good for a first time. FinThose blueberries were REALLY juicy!!!. I did learn a few things from the first one. I didn’t leave enough room in the center for the filling because I made my cuts too long. And next time, a little sweetening in the egg glaze, or maybe just a sugar glaze when it comes out of the oven. The Fam liked it.

My second one was peaches and blueberries. I changed the cuts and was going to twist twistedthe dough as they came across the top of the danish. It looked pretty good until I tried to move it to the baking sheet. Unfortunately, I had not allowed time for the peaches peachesI had poached in sugar with the berries to cool so when I lifted the danish to the sheet it fell apart on me. It was not a pretty sight. So I just added some twists of dough to the top to ‘fix’ it. Next time to the sheet and then add the warm filling. It was just as good to eat, just not pretty to look at!

The most important thing, I had fun with it. Thanks Daring Bakers for introducing us to a great new way to spend a day in the kitchen. I learned how to make Danish. Now, if I could just make all that low-fat, sugar free…. but then, what would be the point.

Lemon Curd
(Chelsea’s Tea Room)

    12 egg yolks, beaten
    2 cups sugar
    1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
    2 sticks butter, chilled and cubed
    2 sticks butter, chilled and cubed
    4 Tbl grated lemon rind

In a heavy bottomed non-aluminum pan, combine egg yolks, sugar,and lemon juice. Cook over very low heat. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon. After 20/25 minutes when the mixture has come together and thickened to a pudding like consistency, remove from heat. Immediately whisk in butter and lemon zest, stirring until mixture has emulsified and it is smooth. Cool over an ice bath.
This can be stored in the fridge up to 3 days.

This is also good on scones.

On Flickr – how it was done – backwards!!!

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