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Yummy head to toe – L’Atelier Jean-Luc Pelé, la visite

Since I started my apprentissage at Nice best pâtisserie (and no, I’m not saying this just because it’s the place I’m spending the best year of my entire life at), I’ve been talking a lot about Pascal and the chef and the cool people I get to work with.

Quite coincidentally, one of them seems to be my Brazilian counterpart. Amanda. She’s perhaps just as silly as me, and certainly, just as crazy in love with life and pâtisserie.

And just like me she’s a food tasting and photography fanatic. A perfect match.

A couple of weeks ago we decided to venture off from our Nice headquarters, and headed to Cannes. More specifically, to Jean-Luc Pelé’s Atelier.

Located on the tiny rue Meynadier, a parallel of the famous Croisette and its not so pretty marches [steps], it makes an adorable chic-black boutique. And although I must admit I chose not to work there after I met Pascal and the huuuuuge laboratoire, I have to confess that the Atelier it is indeed adorable, and probably more importantly, a good pâtisserie.

You know me. I took tons of pictures, tasted a couple triple of entremets, and a good dozen of macarons. So I figured it would be more appropriate to write about the place in episodes.

Tambours. [Drumrolls].

Let me introduce l’Atelier. And the pâtisseries that you can find there. Simple. No tasting involved here (don’t worry, the entremets will follow; and so will the macarons (delicious by the way)).

As you enter the black-walled shop, you’ll probably like the panoramic view of the chocolaterie just as much as I did. But keep an eye on the pâtisseries because they’re pretty pretty, and definitely worth more than just an over-look.

Sure I did not taste them all, but it occurred to me you might like a little food sexiness around here.

La verrine exotique
Did I ever mentioned how addicted I am to food served in glasses? And when it’s pink, and has berries in it, and litchi. Verrine exotique, I’m all yours.

Les éclairs au chocolat
The éclairs – pâte à choux [choux pastry] filled with a bittersweet chocolate crème pâtissière [pastry cream] – clearly weren’t as lovely with their hazardous icing.

Le sablé breton aux framboises
This is something I quite liked. First, the square sablé got me. Then, the neatly arranged raspberries.

La mousse au chocolat
Rather straightforward. In every way.

Le macara
I’m not so addicted to the glaçage marbré. Or the chocolate and raspberry combination. Overdone.

Le millefeuilles
Another of my crushes. No old-fashionned icing. Sweet crème pâtissière that looks like a pearl necklace. Need I say more?

La verrine fleur de sel
A beautiful verrine in in my opinion. Layers of milk chocolate, caramel, and saltiness can do you no harm, trust me. Although, I must recognise I still do not get the chocolate tribal figurine. Any hints?

La tarte aux fruits rouges
Again. Berries. Square tart. A match made in heaven. This is definitely something I’ll think about for my own pâtisserie. My doodled-over Moleskine proves it.

La crème brûlée au chocolat
And something cute to end up with. A chocolate crème brûlée. And it’s over-the-top bitten miniature chocolate bar.

See you soon for the tasting! On the menu: verrine exotique, tarte aux fruits rouges and verrine fleur de sel.

Paralyse me, with your kiss – Tarte aux cacahuètes, caramel et chocolat au lait

[Caramel and milk chocolate peanut tarts]

If you’re anything like me, you might have already experienced that subtle feeling of awkwardness which precedes the very first kiss you’re about to give to this new someone you quite like. And quite obviously, you can never forget the right-after-feeling as well.

Exciting. Electrifying. Paralysing.

I must confess I feel the exact same way when I come up with a new pâtisserie. A couple of Mondays ago, I explored the realm of tarts (oh yes, here they come again; somehow, I seem to think I’m no tart-lover and yet I find myself making tarts after tarts with just the right amount of anticipation and happiness).

At first, I wanted a milk chocolate ganache encased in a delicate pâte sucrée shell, and topped with caramelised pecan.

Real bad.

But apparently my need faded when I saw the 3.50€ price-tag for a small bag of less than two hundred grams of the much-adored pecans.

Peanuts felt like a not-so-bad idea. So did caramel. And more evidently, milk chocolate. But as delicious as it sounded, it seemed too easy.

Vanilla bean mini-marshmallows. Consistent. And downright perfect. For everything. This tart being no exception.

So here came the now famous tarte aux cacahuètes, caramel et chocolat au lait; as in, caramel and milk chocolate peanut tarts.

ps. I was quite thrilled when I found out that Pierre Hermé made a similar tart for a class he gave at Ferrandi.

Tarte aux cacahuètes, caramel et chocolat au lait

I’m not sure what I love most about this tart. The crisp peanut pâte sucrée. The melt-in-your-mouth caramel crème brulée. The crunchy and slightly salty peanuts. The smooth milk chocolate ganache. Or the fluffly vanilla marshmallows.

I guess, I’m really happy with how those five components turned out together.

The pâte sucrée has a delicate taste of peanuts, and the necessary crispness. I chose to rolled it finely and bake it until it turned into a golden brown hue, because I loved the aroma of roasted peanuts; and this smells just like them.

I added peanuts to the caramel crème brulée to make things super*peanuty, plus to add some crunch.

As for the ganache and marshmallows. Well, I suppose you all know how heavenly they are.

Tarte aux cacahuètes, caramel et chocolat au lait

makes eight 8cm tartlets

for the crust
Use half this recipe, just. Just make sure to substitute the ground almonds with ground roasted and salted peanuts.
Bake blind at 180°C for 15 minutes before pouring the caramel crème brulée into the fonds de tarte.

for the caramel crème brulée
100g caster sugar, plus an extra tsp
125g double cream
25g butter
one egg
one egg yolk
1 heaped tablespoon flour

8 tbsp of roasted and salted peanuts

Lower the oven temperature to 150°C.
Place 100g of sugar in a saucepan and caramelise until it turns golden brown. Wisk in the ouble cream in three batches and bring to a rolling boil until possible pieces of siezed caramel have melted back in. Mix in the butter and set aside to cool down slightly.
In a bowl, beat the eggs with the extra sugar and the flour. Pour the caramelm mixture over this and mix until combined.
Arrange a tbsp of peanuts into each parbaked shells. Pipe the caramel crème brûlée over the peanuts and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until just set.

Remove to a wire rack and set aside until cool.

for the milk chocolate ganache
150g double cream
200g milk chocolate

Bring the cream to the boil and pour over the chopped chocolate in three batches. Mix until smooth and pipe over the caramel crème brûlée.

for the vanilla bean marshmallows
Make this recipe, and cut the marshmallows into tiny 1x1cm cubes. Arrange on top of the tarts.