A Couple of Tarts

We should look for someone to eat and drink with before looking for something to eat and drink, for dining alone is leading the life of a lion or wolf. ~ Epicurus

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

le gouter

You should always save room for something sweet. If you are feeling very special begin your meal with dessert. And if you are feeling extra special enjoy a wonderful 3-course dessert menu. One of my favorite places in New York is Chikalicious. Located in the East Village and barely the size of a studio apartment, it serves up whimsical, jewel-like treats. I had the good fortune to work alongside Chika Tillman where I was able to observe her creative process and sense of humor. Before we even sat down Don, Chika's equally passionate husband, poured us glasses of champagne. Ahhh...aperitifs in the afternoon. What could be better?

My original intention was to just stop by and say hello but I convinced Karen to share a dessert after perusing the menu. It is difficult to choose just one. Should we get the signature fromage blanc "island" or try the caramel soup with blackberries? I know whatever we choose we will not be disappointed. The first course was a black pepper gelee and a quenelle of strawberry sorbet. The texture of the sorbet was perfect, yet the flavor was not overly sweet. The main course consisted of a superstar tiramsu-Marscapone custard, espresso granita and 3 perfect squares of lemon pound cake. Our meal ended with an exquisite petit fours plate of coconut marshmallow, chocolate truffle and a hazelnut tartlette.

If you are unable to make it to Chikalicious, you can still make le gouter a part of votre vie quotidien. Try the following recipe of Breton sable and enjoy them with cafe, the or a pot of confiture. These cookies have a wonderful texture and rich, buttery flavor. They are also quite versatile. Try adding citrus zest, ground nuts or spices for a twist on a classic biscuit.

8 oz. unsalted butter (room temp)
3/4 C. and 2 T. sugar
5 egg yolks
21/3 C. all-purpose flour
1 T. baking powder
1 t. salt

-sift the dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and set aside
-with a paddle attachment on your mixer, cream the butter and sugar at medium speed until
light and fluffy
-add the yolks one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition
-slowly add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until it is incorporated
-divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into a log about 1 1/2 inches wide
-wrap each log in plastic wrap and chill for 3 hours (the dough can be frozen for 2 months or
refrigerated for 2 more days)
-after the dough has rested, preheat the oven to 350 degrees
-lightly butter or spray a muffin tin and slice the cookies about 1/4 inch thick
-place each slice in the muffin tin
-bake for 5 mins, rotate the tin and bake for 5 more mins
-the sables will be a nice golden color around the edges and allow them to cool slightly in the
muffin tins before transferring them to a cooling rack
-this will yield approximately 4 dozen cookies

203 East 10th Street
New York, NY 10003


Anonymous Karen said...

What a lovely post! And the picture is great! Having been one of the lucky recipients of these cookies, I highly reccommend giving this recipe a try. I definitely will.

10:52 AM  
Blogger DiveBarIntellect said...

Those were some seriously, tasty cookies. Thanks again, Dora!

3:21 PM  

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