Summer Fruit Tarts – Happy Father’s Day!

| For Friends & Family


Summer fruits offer so many baking possibilities! For Father’s Day, I made a favorite of mine, the fresh fruit tart, with a pâte sucrée crust baked with a thin layer of almond cream, and topped with custard (crème légère) and sliced fruit. A light brushing of apricot glaze seals the fruits and gives a great sheen to the tart.


But, another delicious one that I have made a couple times, thanks to plums from a colleague’s backyard, is a baked plum & almond tart. This one works with any type of crust (I used pâte sucrée since I had a big batch of dough), and is filled with almond cream and sliced plums arranged on top.


I brushed the plums with some melted butter and sprinkled with vanilla sugar, and then covered the exposed almond cream sections with sliced almonds. When baked together, the almond cream puffs up in line with the plums so that the slices look like they were pressed into the almond cream.


Depending on your oven, you can get your almonds lightly browned during the baking. Doesn’t happen in my home oven though unless I bake much longer than necessary. Still delicious in any case!


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Strawberry Pies & Tarts – Happy 4th of July!

| Holidays

Happy 4th of July!

Ever since I sampled the deliciously ripe and sweet strawberries at the local farmer’s market this summer, I knew I had to find an occasion to make some strawberry pies and tarts.

Growing up, a fresh strawberry pie was a household favorite, especially with my parents. When it came to their birthdays or anniversaries, forget the cakes and chocolates — nothing beat a Marie Callender’s fresh strawberry pie. Believe it or not, I have never made a pie. No real reason other than, I never got around to it, and it was always someone else’s specialty. But now that I’ve realized how easy it is to recreate a household favorite, there will certainly be more pies coming out of the Milo’s Bonbons kitchen.



The crust in this pie is the only part that requires any real work. And even then, it doesn’t take much. I used a standard cut-in butter recipe based on Cook’s Illustrated. I generally followed the recipe but relied on my pâte brisée experience for assembly. I also used primarily butter (with very little shortening, in anticipation of the trans fats ban), and primarily vodka (with very little water to avoid gluten formation). The result is quite tender and flaky.


I didn’t make the glaze from scratch. Instead, I mixed Marie’s strawberry glaze (you can find this at a regular grocery store in the produce section) with Marie Callender’s own strawberry glaze. The former is cheaper and accessible, while the latter is more flavorful (my guess is probably due to actual strawberry puree content). After the crust is baked and cooked, toss strawberries in the glaze and fill the crust as high as you’d like!


As for the festive tarts, they are made with a pâte sucrée crust, baked with a thin layer of almond cream, topped with custard, sliced strawberries and blueberries, and then sealed with apricot nappage.



This takes a little more work than the pie, but not by much!


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Wedding | Sandy & Mike in Malibu

| Featured, Weddings

I previewed, but never got a chance to feature, the event that premiered the new Milo’s Bonbons logo. At Sandy & Mike’s wedding in Malibu earlier this year, we set up a dessert table with a wedding cake centerpiece. It was colorful and fun, and a real smorgasbord of sweets.


I had a lot of fun collaborating with the bride and groom on interesting flavor ideas and presentation. They were excited to present unique desserts that featured some of their favorite flavors like Earl Grey tea, bourbon and peach. I was also inspired by their wedding colors, which were along the lines of coral and slate blue. What made the experience really special for me was the abundance of support and enthusiasm the couple had for Milo’s Bonbons. It was amazing seeing the tent card signs they printed for the desserts, especially the “Desserts by Milo’s Bonbons” sign. Thank you Sandy & Mike!


The dessert table featured mini cupcakes, macarons, tarts, mini cakes and parfait cups. For the cupcakes, I made two types: a chocolate bourbon ganache cupcake with bourbon buttercream, and an orange cupcake with champagne buttercream.

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For the macarons, I made two types as well: an Earl Grey chocolate ganache macaron, and a passion fruit pastry cream macaron.

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The mini tarts had a layer of baked almond cream and was topped with mascarpone mousse and little gumpaste flowers.

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To add variety in height and shape, I also had parfait cups filled with layers of granola, peach custard and raspberry puree. The photo I took of them was unfortunately a bit dark.


The wedding couple’s wedding cake was three tiers, but only the top tier was actual cake for cutting purposes. The bottom two tiers were dummy cakes. The cake was a strawberry layered cake with Chambord buttercream and in order to share this with guests, I also created mini cakes with golden heart skewers added by the bride. That was actually the most challenging item of the event, as I was exploring different cake textures and cutting techniques and learning as I went. I certainly learned a lot for future events!


Photo below by onelove photography:


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