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Gateau Basque – Eat’n Up Turnbull Style!

January 3, 2011

From time to time, we like to share with you, all the different ways canned preserves can be used to make some of the most delicious things.  It can be as simple as tomato sauce on a home-baked pizza or sauerkraut on a reuben sandwich but this next recipe tops those…because it’s a dessert made Turnbull Style.  Dessert is one of the most yummy parts of a meal and in this next recipe we will show you how combining a variety of homemade preserves makes something great…AMAZING.  So, let’s Eat Up!

This recipe was adapted from the book, The Food of France, published in Canada by Whitecap Books.  This tart style cake from the Basque country traditionally uses an almond flavoured crust with a cherry spiked custard filling.  Sounds like a pretty delicious recipe to be messing around with right?  But, why not put your own twist on it by adding some home canned goodies; after all, recipes are only guidelines for experimentation.  So, here’s a stripped down version of the recipe.

Almond Pastry

  • 3 1/4 cups: all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp: finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup: ground almonds
  • 2/3 cup: granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 tsp: vanilla extract
  • 5 1/2 oz(about 2/3 cup): butter softened

Combine the flour, lemon zest (I substituted 1 tbsp of our candied orange peel ground) and almonds (feel free to use your favorite nuts like hazelnuts, pecans, or walnuts).  Next combine the sugar, eggs, vanilla extract (again, I used some of our homemade vanilla extract ~ it’s so easy to make and fun…we’ll be posting this soon), and butter. 

Blend the egg mixture into the dry ingredients.  Use your hands to form the dough into a ball then divide 2/3 of the dough.  The recipe states chilling the dough at this point but I rolled it out immediately between two sheets of  waxed paper.

I then placed the rolled out dough into a 10″ springform pan, you could also use a glass tart or pie plate, or a metal tart ring placed on a baking sheet as in the recipe.  Whichever container you choose trim any excess dough. 

The recipe suggests chilling at this stage for 30 minutes but I don’t think it’s necessary.  Next we’ll make the filling, oh, did I say filling I mean…

Almond Creme Patissiere:

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup: granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup: all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds (or other nuts)
  • 4 cups: milk
  • 4 vanilla beans ( Two beans will add more than enough vanilla flavour)
  • 4 tbsp: cherry jam or jelly (improvise with any jam or jelly, I used our Netherworld Cascadian Spiced Beer Jelly from a very cool local micro-brewery)
  • 1 egg lightly beaten

Whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until creamy.  Stir in the flour and ground nuts.  Split the vanilla beans with knife and scrape out the seeds then place the bean casings and seeds in a large saucepan with the milk.  Heat to a boil stirring constantly.  Remove the bean casings then pour a small amount of milk over the egg mixture stirring to combine and being careful not to curdle the eggs.  Once half of the milk is combined add the remainder.  Return to the saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat then simmer until thickened (about two minutes) stirring continuously.  Allow to cool to a thick custard consistency, this doesn’t take long in our neck of the woods, I just threw it out on the porch for about 10 mins…arctic cold Canada eh!?

Next spread your preserved jam or jelly over the bottom crust, then smooth the custard over that. 

Roll out the remaining 1/3 of dough for the top crust.  Brush the bottom crust with the beaten egg and attach the top crust.  Trim and flute the rim, then brush the top with the remaining beaten egg.  Score the top to allow venting. Bake in oven preheated to 350 F for 40 mins or until golden brown. Allow to cool for an hour before slicing.

I hope this recipe has inspired you to improvise when baking and cooking.  Finding innovative ways to use your own preserved items will bring new excitement to more traditional meals and help you maintain superhero status among friends and family.

Eat Up Total:

  • 1 Big Ass Tart…enjoyed between friends (and, there was some left over)
3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 3, 2011 9:33 pm

    Oooh, I absolutely love tarts! Even better with using your own canned goodies. Delightful!

  2. thriftymomma permalink
    January 4, 2011 8:54 am

    Just found your site. We started our canning journey last year. I’ve managed to find alot of the old Crown jars with the glass lids but I’m not sure what to can in them or if it’s even a wise thing. I saw a picture in your photo file (on the sidebar) of a hot tomato… something done in the older jar. Can I use them for pickles? Fruit? Or just dried goods storage?

    I’m having a problem coming up with enough of the metal ring part for the older jars. Can you tell me where you’re getting yours?

    I know this comment doesn’t belong with this post but didn’t see where I could e-mail you a question. Can’t wait to read some more …..

    • January 4, 2011 9:37 am

      This is a great question. Old jars…so beautiful, so beautiful, they make your pantry look cool…But what do we put in them (safely)!?!
      At the beginning of the year, we were gifted a number of old jars and continue to be gifted jars as more of our friends and family realize we CAN everything. We thought we’d try to see if we could get them to seal…after all, this is how my mama did it. But, we had no luck. I’m a huge worrier (probably more because of the quantity of things we can…and I’m a huge worrier) so, when the jars didn’t seal they went into the fridge. We tried it a couple more times, asking our moms and grandmas the secret but still it didn’t work. The seal is nothing like what you get today with the new lids. So, this is what we’ve concluded…You can use the old jars on small batch items that you plan to refrigerate and eat right away, or on preserves that don’t require water bath sealing…like “drunk’n cherries” or anything with lots of hooch. The alcohol preserves them. We also use the jars for dried things (spices, grains, sugar) and CANDY!

      Oh, and finding the old rings and glass tops…try your re-use centers, thrift stores, garage sales, antique shops etc…you shouldn’t pay too much for the old rings.
      I also carry a couple of the new rings in my purse…because you can find older jars that fit the new regular standard mouth and wide mouth mason jars. These jars can then be used like any of the new jars because you can just pop on a new lid and process in either a hot water bath or pressure canner. You can check out this post about Vintage Jars Hope this helps!

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