Thursday, March 3, 2011
You know when you finally convince yourself to buy that special, expensive ingredient and as soon as you place it in your pantry it just sits there...to special to be used. That happens to a lot of the things I buy. As you can probably attest to, baking isn't exactly the cheapest hobby. Over the next few weeks I'm forcing myself to suck it up and use some of my coveted ingredients that have been sitting around. In the next few weeks expect to find a dessert incorporating the chestnut cream I bought on my last trip to Paris that I just haven't had the heart to use yet. But for today, the star of the dish is the almond meal that was tucked away in my refrigerator.
The recipe is a combination of the shortbread crust from my favorite lemon bar recipe and the almond cream (frangipane) recipe from the (equally coveted and rarely used) Tartine cookbook.
Raspberry Frangipane Slice
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cups almond meal
1/2 cup sugar
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg
1 tablespoon whole milk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
pinch of salt
1/4 cup raspberry jam (or as desired)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8x8 inch baking pan. Combine the flour, powdered sugar, and the first amount of butter. Pat dough into prepared pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the frangipane topping. Beat the butter on medium speed until creamy. Add the sugar and mix to incorporate. Add the almond flour and beat until thoroughly combined. Add the salt, almond extract (if using), and egg and mix until incorporated. Add the milk and beat until light and fluffy.
Spread raspberry jam (or any flavor that you like) on the warm crust. Pour the frangpiane mixture on top of the jam layer and spread evenly with an angled spatula, making sure to cover the jam completely.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Halfway through baking sprinkle sliced almonds on top of the frangipane if desired. Cool completely before cutting to serve.