Pate Sucree d’Armand (Sweet Pastry with Almonds)


A great pastry for sweet tarts.  In fact, the almonds are optional – to make a ‘normal’ Pate Sucree, replace with an equivalent weight of plain flour n(which should make the pastry a little more stable.  Alternatively increase the proportion of ground almonds to make a shorter pastry, more akin to pate sablee.

Warning! This is a wonderful, rich sweet pastry but doesn’t hold together very well when rolled.  Make sure the pastry is shaped and well chilled before rolling, and is then rolled very quickly – speed is more important than accuracy if you don’t want your pastry turning into a sticky film on the kitchen surface!

I make this double quantity because 1: it’s not that hard to make, but given the amount of chilling, it does take some time before you can use it, and 2: if you spend too long rolling out your first batch, you’ve always got that second piece in the fridge to fall back on once you’ve scraped the first lot off the rolling pin!

Makes more than enough for 2 * 9-10″ tart tins, freezes well

Ingredients

  • 330g Plain Flour
  • 50g Ground Almonds
  • 240g salted Butter, diced & well chilled
  • 110g Golden Castor Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • A splash of Vanilla Extract
  • Lots of flour for dusting

Method

  • In a large bowl work the flour, almonds and butter with your fingertips to produce an even breadcrumb-like texture, before stiring the sugar through
  • Beat the eggs & vanilla then stir into the flour mix, stiring through with a knife until combined into a ball – this may be a little sticky, depending upon the size of your eggs
  • Tip out onto a floured surface and work very lightly to form a smooth ball – do NOT overwork, and don’t get this too warm
  • Form into 1 or 2 flattened disks before wrapping in cling film and refrigerating. Chill for at least 3 hours (
  • At this point, you can freeze the pastry if you wish but if you wish to use it straight away, ensure that you have a heavily floured surface, a pre-prepared tin (if using) and you’re very quick with your rolling or you risk the pastry falling apart as it warms up.  The up-side of this type of pastry is that you can patch up holes & cracks if & when they appear

 

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