Friday 24 April 2009


The fraisier is a real classic of french patisserie. It's a strawberry entremets with slices of strawberry visible all around the edge. Today we didn't make a fraisier. We did make a poirier which is the same thing made with pears. We'll be making a proper fraisier next week after today's practice.

I thought it might be interesting for some to see the layers going into an entremets. Here is the first layer, a Viennese biscuit, going into a ring lined with celluloid tape, sitting on a laminated paper circle. The word biscuit in patisserie refers to all kinds of sponges, too. The Viennese biscuit is soft and supple. It is imbibed with a Poire Williams flavoured syrup.

 The body of the entremets is a Poire Willims flavoured crème diplomate. Crème diplomate (lit. diplomat cream) is crème patissière lightened with whipped cream and lightly set with gelatin. A ring of the cream is piped onto the edge of the biscuit leaving a half-cm gap with the mould. The pear slices are inserted then the layer of cream is completed.

Then a layer of diced pears.

A touch more cream then a second layer of bisuit.

A final layer of cream and everything is smoothed over.

The entremets is blast chilled to ease the passage of a decorous layer of Italian meringue. The thin layer of meringue is patterned with the blade of a serrated knife and some swirls are piped round the edge. The meringue is singed, the inscription inscribed and a chocolate fan and miniature pear half are added.

Foil chimneys in our Berrichons. These are puff pastry cases filled with slices of potato sprinkled with parsley, onion and lardons. Once cooked, the tops are excised and a healthy spoonful of crème fraîche added. Very delish.

One of our quiches from the other day. It's a funny kind of regional quiche (can't remember the name) with far too much carrot for my taste. The pastry, here, has been blind baked but once the filling was added, the quiches were frozen raw. That is what you see here, hence the funny colours/textures.

(And here is that bitch of a test in all its glory.)

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