Saturday, March 27, 2010

DB: Orange (Strawberry) Tian

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.

To me The Daring Bakers' Challenges are always a struggle not so much in the technical aspect (I love learning new things), but in the flavor arena. I'm a wuss when it comes to trying new foods, and I have some very strange likes and dislikes. Citrus is one of the things I'm not overly fond of. Orange juice hurts my stomach, and the white pithy stuff that surrounds the orange segments is very unappetizing to me. I know, I know, I'm weird.

So this month's Orange Tian posed a dilemma. To Orange or not To Orange? I chose Not to Orange. I swapped out the Orange Marmalade for Strawberry Marmalade and used strawberry slices as my topping instead of orange.

The recipe I used for Strawberry Marmalade did include tangerines, so I saved some of the tangerine segments and made one token "Orange" Tian.

Below are the many steps that went into making the Tian.

The Pate Sablee were quick and easy to whip up.

Jennifer of Chocolate Shavings suggested a baking time of 20 minutes, but my Sablees were toasty brown after just 13 minutes.

Next came the Strawberry Marmalade which was made from strawberries, tangerines, sugar, vanilla, strawberry extract and cinnamon. The marmalade took a long time to cook (about 30 minutes), and at first taste was a little bitter. I added more sugar, more vanilla and a little bit of mint. It tasted better after the adjustments.

The whipped cream was a snap to whip up.

Then the assembly. I lined the pan with parchment paper and arranged the fruit. I made one orange and the rest strawberry.

Added a layer of whipped cream.

And topped with a Pate Sablee that had been slathered in marmalade.

I froze the pans for 3 hours and then popped the frozen concoction out with just a twist of the pan.

Everyone who sampled the Tian said they were superb. And what really made my day was that the people who sampled both the Orange and Strawberry Tian said the strawberry was better. Thanks Jennifer from Chocolate Shavings, I really enjoyed your challenge.


  1. Your strawberry tian looks lovely! Maybe I'll try your version in a few months when I can get nice strawberries. I made the citrus one, but I'm weird in that I love the white pith under the orange peel--I eat it before the orange itself :~)

  2. These are so cute, they'd make a great Easter party dessert! Perfect individual servings.

  3. Your strawberry tian looks amazing. I will have to try this dessert again with different fruits in the coming months. Well done on making a 'token' orange one as well.

  4. WOW..both of your tians look sensational..especially the strawberry. Love the chocolate drizzle over the orange. Beautiful job!