Last Saturday, with Ophelie we hosted our third Around Our Table workshop in my flat in Montmartre with another intimate group of six lovely and talented ladies, Marjolaine, Chloé, Emilie, Adeline, Chaimae & Coraline.
I still have vivid memories of that day. Once again it just went by too quickly. We were really pleased that our little group enjoyed its time with us. We almost felt we needed extra time…
We started the day around a scrumptious morning tea with a brioche and croissants from my local bakery together with three delicious jams made by Marie – O Jardin Sucré and the fragrant teas London 7 am (Earl grey and vanilla) and Sencha by Kodama (it’s a cute tea bar in the Montorgueil area where they have a beautiful selection of teas and they every tea is infused via a cold process).
Then I played the model for a lifestyle shoot preparing our dessert, a cherry pie (see recipe below). I felt it was one of the best highlights of the day for our participants who hurried around the worktop to shoot its setting whilst I run finishing the onion tatin.
The table was set with simplicity with a selection of beautiful vintage plates supplied by the lovely Elodie who is based in the Vernaison market at the St Ouen flea market in the North of Paris – La Tablée d’Elo and Opinel table knives. The beautiful Sapa bouquet was arranged by Bergamotte. The table looked very romantic especially with a surprise handmade gift wrapped by the talented Eglantine – Po Lafabrique for each attendee.
Just as we were about to serve the onion tatin, I failed to have something we could photograph, so we did not do more lifestyle shoots and took a late break to eat our comfort menu (I did the onion tatin again yesterday though, with the crust leftover, without the goat cheese, to have a couple shots for this post). We served the celeriac, parsnip and hazelnut soup in the beautiful ceramic bowls made by Olive Ceramica, distributed by the lovely Josephine – nouparis.
After lunch we set three scenes with sweet bites: the long expected cherry pie, skillet cookies (I highly recommend to make them, the recipe is really good!) and lemon squares. At last we sat for tea and devoured everything!
We wrapped up the day with overall feedback from everyone: the backdrops came up as one of the key tips we discussed which they loved! Our ladies finally left with a small bag of goodies for them to take home as nice souvenirs. I am already looking forward to next one to exchange and share more beautiful moments like these…
Our next workshop will be held on the 17th of March, in cooperation with our friend Bénédicte from The Parisian Kitchen. We would love you to join, but don’t wait as they are limited spots still available. Please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org to book or if you need more information.
See you soon!
Onion tatin (by me)
During the workshop, I failed to have something we could photograph so I did it again yesterday with the crust leftover, without the goat cheese though, to have a couple of nice photos for this post.
Prep time: 25 min / Resting time : 2 hours / cooking time : 15 min + 30 min
For the crust
95g butter at room temperature, diced
1/2 tsp. salt
2,5 cl / 1 tbsp + 2 tsp. fresh milk or water
125 g flour
For the filling
4 large to medium onions + 12 small (or about 25-30 small or 6 to 7 big – you can mix and match with shallots too)
100g of goat cheese (optional)
2 Tbsp of olive oil
3 tsp. of honey
2 Tbsp. of balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. of fresh thyme
salt & pepper to season
For the crust, put the flour, salt and butter in a food processor, and blitz until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. With the motor still running, add the water, and pulse until the mixture starts to clump together into a dough. You need to be cautious at this stage as you don’t want sticky pastry. Add a little more water if necessary.
Remove the dough from the food processor, flatten into a disc, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for two hours.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F
For the filling, mix honey, vinegar and oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place all onions in the skillet and let them colour for 15 min turning them over regularly. There should a good amount of juices at the bottom of the skillet.
Roll our the dough to the skillet outer edge diameter. Then cover the onions with thin slices of goat cheese (if using) with the dough and fold the edge inside the skillet. Put the skillet into the oven and bake for 30 min until the filling is bubbling and the pastry is golden, firm and lightly puffed.
Allow to cool for 5 to 10 min before flipping the tart over a serving dish. Serve warm with a seasonal mixed leaves salad.
original recipe by Rosie Birkett from her book A lot on her plate
Prep time: 30 min / Resting time: 1 hour / baking time: 40 min
For the pastry
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 260g/9oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 40g/1½oz ground almonds
- Pinch of salt
- 180g/6oz cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1 tbsp demerara sugar, for sprinkling
For the filling
- 100g/3½oz cherry jam (we used the O Jardin Sucré one which is delicious on its own)
- 1 tbsp cherry brandy, kirsch or amaretto (optional)
- 1 tbsp of fresh ginger, thinly grated (addition to the original recipe)
- ½ tsp grated nutmeg
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp cornflour, mixed to a paste with 2 tsp cold water
- 500g/1lb 2oz fresh black or red cherries, pitted and halved (as cherries are not in season in February we used preserved pitted cherries)
- 24cm (10in) pie dish
- Pastry brush
For the pastry, put the sugar, flour, ground almonds, salt and butter in a food processor, and blitz until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. With the motor still running, add about three tablespoons of the beaten egg and two tablespoons of ice-cold water, and pulse until the mixture starts to clump together into a dough. You need to be cautious at this stage as you don’t want sticky pastry. Add a little more water if necessary.
Remove the dough from the food processor, divide into two, flatten each portion into discs, wrap each disc in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 and grease the pie dish. Remove a disc of pastry from the fridge, unwrap it and roll it out on a generously floured work surface to 3mm/¼in thick and about 2½cm/1in wider than the pie dish. Transfer to a floured baking sheet and chill for about 10 minutes. Repeat this process with the remaining disc of pastry.
Heat the jam for the filling in a saucepan with 100ml (3½ fl oz) water, the alcohol (if using), nutmeg, fresh ginger and the vanilla extract. When it’s all melted together, add the diluted cornflour and stir together until smooth and thickened. Add the cherries and gently coat them in the mixture, being careful not to mush them up, so you preserve their shape. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Using a floured rolling pin, carefully transfer one of the chilled pastry sheets to the greased pie dish and drape it across the dish. Let it sink into the dish and, holding on to the edges, lift and tuck the pastry into the edges of the dish, all the way around, to line it. Trim off any excess pastry and lightly prick the base with a fork. Fill the dish with the cherry filling. Use a pastry cutter to cut holes in the remaining pastry sheet, covering an area just smaller than the diameter of the pie dish, leaving a large border intact. Place it over the pie filling and fold the edge of the top crust over the edge of the bottom crust, crimping it together with your fingers to seal.
Brush the pastry with the remains of the beaten egg and sprinkle over the demerara sugar. Bake for 20 minutes, until the crust is golden, then reduce the oven temperature to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4, covering the top of the pastry with foil if you need to, to avoid it burning, and bake for a further 35–40 minutes, until the filling is bubbling and the pastry is golden, firm and lightly puffed.
Allow the pie to cool for about one hour before serving with cream.
For 16 squares
Prep time: 30 min / Resting time: 2 hours to overnight / Baking time : 20 + 50 min
For the crust
150g organic flour
2 c.s. organic cornflour
1 pinch of salt
40g icing (confectioner’s – powdered) sugar
125g organic butter
For the lemon topping
5 organic eggs
5 c.s. flour
3 organic lemons (juice + zest of 1 lemon)
icing sugar to sprinkle on top
1- Preheat oven to 180°C/350 °F. Butter a 24-cm square baking pan. Line bottom with parchment paper, leaving overhanging on two sides; grease paper.
2- Prepare the crust: Mix the flours, salt and icing sugar, the add the diced butter and mix on low just until you get fin crumbs. Spread and press the crumbs into the bottom and 1,5 cm (1/2 inch) up the pan sides. Bake until lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Lower your oven temperature to 150°C / 300°F.
3- Prepare the lemon topping: In a large bowl, whisk together eggs with sugar and floor. Add the lemon juice and the lemon zest finely grated until smooth. Pour over hot crust in pan; return to oven, and bake until filling is set, 40 to 50 minutes (depending on your oven). Allow to cool completely in the pan. Refrigerate until filling is firm, about 2 hours or up to 3 days. Using paper overhang, lift the cake onto a chopping board; cut into 16 squares, and dust with icing sugar.
I have swapped the peanuts by the same amount of hazelnuts and the peanut butter by tahini.
And of course, this would not have been possible without our most gracious sponsors. From tableware to beautiful flowers, cutlery to tea, yummy jams to lovely hand gifts our sponsors were amazing!
Thank you so much!