The 2010 March Daring Baker’s challenge was hosted by Jennifer of Chocolate Shavings. She chose Orange Tian as the challenge for this month, a dessert based on a recipe from Alain Ducasse’s Cooking School in Paris.
Before March 1, I had never heard of a tian. To be honest, I still don’t really know where this dessert came from or what the pastry/tart/cookie thing on the bottom is. All I know is that this was absolutely delicious. I have the worlds biggest sweet tooth, so when I think of dessert, I think of chocolate. This is one of the few desserts that wasn’t chocolate that I would eat on a regular basis. It had so many great components, and it’s really versatile and can be altered with the seasons or your preferences.
The Daring Bakers’ recipe called for everything orange — orange marmalade, orange flavored whipped cream and orange slices. We were allowed to alter the recipe with any fruits that we preferred, as long as we incorporated the pastry, a jam, the whipped cream and fresh fruit (of course). I decided to go with a mix of strawberries and bananas, two of my favorite fruits. I made a fresh strawberry jam, which I’ve never done before, and lined the tians with fresh sliced bananas.
The jam didn’t come out perfect (and I totally forgot to take a picture, fail), but it tasted really great. I used Ina Garten’s recipe which resulted in a great tasting jam, but it just wasn’t very thick at all. I even cooked it ten minutes longer than she suggested, but it just didn’t want to thicken up. That didn’t stop us from using all the leftovers, though.
The pate sablee, which I’ve never had before, was delicious. It had the perfect crunch, which added a great texture to the overall dessert. It was a pretty basic dough, so I wasn’t expecting it to have much flavor, but it reminded me of a butter cookie. Overall, I thought all the components went together really well and this was a good alternative to a chocolaty dessert — even for someone with a sweet tooth.
This was probably one of the easier Daring Bakers’ Challenges I’ve done, and something I’d make again in the future. If you’ve never had tian, I would suggest giving it a shot, especially with the warmer months coming up.
Recipe link: Tian