I’m getting old and craving the old classic pastries that inspired me to become a pastry chef so many years ago and want to share them with you. In Lyon for years, they have made pink praline almonds. I first tasted them while working in The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco 23 years ago. The pink praline almonds are simply candied almonds, but pink, but they are more than that really. The almonds should be toasted, a low long toast so the color permeates all the way through the almond. The almonds are then candied in boiling hot sugar syrup being stirred and tossed causing the liquid sugar to recrystallize and form a shell around the almond. The almonds cool and are ground coarsely. We mix the almonds with creme fraiche and cook them to a light pink caramel with a pinch of salt. So simple, yet so delicious. We top the tart with a touch of vanilla chantilly, a few pieces of freeze dried strawberry, and one pink almond. The result is creamy, crunchy, sweet, tart, and buttery. So good. Grateful to my chef mentor Celine for teaching me this piece of history and allowing me to keep the tradition alive.

 

common allergies: eggs//dairy//almonds//wheat