Madeleines in Provence
A little more than a year ago, good friends of mine, Yuval and Elisha, packed their belongings, said goodbye to crowded Tel Aviv and moved to France to build a new home with their baby girl Akko. Since then, they host family and friends non-stop in their beautiful house in the village of Lauris in southern France. It was only a matter of time before I would find myself there, between lavender fields and endless vineyards, raising a glass to a simpler, more charming life.
In the past few weeks I’ve been going through krembo fever like it’s the middle of winter. Since I started making krembo (crembo) from Swiss meringue instead of Italian meringue, it became more fun to make them and safely serve them to the people I love. Like my sister, who didn’t feel well last week and was stuck at home. I made her a ruby krembo from lemon and raspberry, so pink and sweet and fruity.
Ruby Berry Pralines
Tempering chocolate to make pralines on hot summer days is doomed to fail. I was naïve enough to think that the AC would solve the problem. I mean, it’s cool and nice enough in the house with it turned on… for me, not for the chocolate. Tempering chocolate requires a specific room temperature. 18-20 °C / 64-68 °F to be exact.
The pistachios I brought from Bronte in Sicily last summer are just about to end. I bought 4 kilograms that I used in a variety of desserts. I saved the very last pistachios for a special dessert that won my heart (and stomach) at the end of the trip: cassatina. A festive Sicilian cake filled with sweet ricotta cream, covered by green pistachio marzipan and decorated with candied fruits.
Lemon Berry Tart
A couple of weeks ago we held a goodbye party for Betty and David, good friends. She’s American, he’s Israeli, and together they’re the perfect mix, just like this pink lemon berry tart combination. After about a decade living here, they decided to move to chilly Boston. They met and got married here, and I had the honor to make them their wedding cake. It was a three-tier tres leches cake, soaked in three different kinds of milk. One of them (evaporated milk) doesn’t exist here and so it had to make it all the way here from the States just for this divine cake. I have to recreate this recipe and put it up here one day.
Christmas Tree Tartlets
I still remember how my siblings and I used to hear the bells approaching our neighborhood on Christmas Eve as kids. We would immediately run to the windows, hoping to get a glimpse of Santa Claus riding his reindeer-drawn sleigh his car with a huge inflatable reindeer on top. How we used to wish he’d stop by our house too, until mom got the idea eventually and invited him in!
Lemon Berry Tartlets
Sometimes I like to combine elements from previous posts to create something new. For this post, I used the crust I baked for the lemon-lime pistachio tartlets. I filled the crust with the lemon cream I prepared for the Crembo’s lemon core. I decorated the top with leftover raspberries and blueberries from the mousse cheesecake. And here’s what I came up with, a lemon berry tartlet.
Mousse Cheesecake with Berries
Last weekend, my sister-in-law, Iman, celebrated her birthday. When I asked her what cake would she like me to make for the occasion, she refused to say so as not to bother me. I asked her again and she refused kindly yet again. So I asked her what kinds of cake she liked and finally she answered me. That’s how it works in my family. We don’t hear “No”. We only hear the “Yes” hiding somewhere between “No thanks” and “Absolutely not”.
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