Sunday, May 8, 2011

French Fridays with Dorie - Tourteau de Chèvre

I'm a few days late on my French Friday with Dorie weekly recipe, but I saved this gorgeous Tourteau de Chèvre for Saturday, so I could bring it to Nina's birthday party.


The traditional Tourteau Fromagé is a specialty cheesecake of Poitou Charentes, a tranquil and largely unspoilt region halfway down the western coast of France. The cheesecake is unique, in appearance and taste. It has a charcoal-black crust on top, which is achieved by baking it at a very high temperature at first, before lowering the temperature for the rest of the baking time. Unlike just about everything in the American cheesecake family, the torteau is not soft, creamy, moist, or even rich. Instead, it's a fairly dry cake, similar to a sponge cake, that you can cut into wedges and eat out of hand.

Photo:  Wikipedia

Although I've never experienced the traditional version, I'm glad Dorie's emerges from the oven quite different, and beautifully puffed and golden brown, like a soufflé. It also deflates rapidly once out of the oven.


The recipe provides the option of using a savory or sweet tart dough, depending on whether you plan to serve it with white wine as an apertif, as a dessert with a drizzle of honey and fresh fruit, in the afternoon with tea, or in the morning with coffee.


The filling is made with a soft goat cheese, egg yolks, sugar, pinch of salt, cornstarch, a touch of Cognac, and whipped egg whites gently folded in. It's best to use an 8-inch springform pan, but I made do with a pie dish.  I had a little piece at the party, and loved the soft and light texture.  It had a nice flavor, and excellent just on its own, but I think some fresh strawberries and a drizzle of syrupy balsamic vinegar would be the perfect pairing. 


French Fridays with Dorie is an online cooking group, that just hit 2,000 members, dedicated to Dorie Greenspan‘s newest book, Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.   As members of the group, we have purchased the cookbook and cook along as much as we can. There is a new recipe each week, and we post about that recipe on Friday. We are asked to refrain from posting the actual recipes on our blog. The book is filled with stunning photography, and personal stories about each recipe, which makes it that much more intriguing. I highly recommend adding it to your cookbook collection if you haven't already!

9 comments:

yummychunklet said...

Your tourteau looks delicious! And I like how you included a photo of the actual French black-top version. I was wondering how that would actually look.

Foodiva said...

That's clever baking it in a pie pan, as this is a tourteau, after all. The texture of your cheesecake looks splendid and I'm sure your guests must've enjoyed it as much as you did!

Carmen said...

I'm into anything goat. Give me goat and I'm happy! I'm making this. Beautiful.

Jun said...

I've never tasted this before... It looks so nice!!!

Sis. Boom. said...

I'm glad you showed everyone what Dorie was talking about. I've seen them before and didn't think they were that appealing. I much prefer looking at something like yours...so beautiful and it captures what this desert is about so perfectly. Great job!

KarenP said...

Thanks for sharing the picture of the traditional tourteau - I was having trouble picturing what it would look like. It's nice to see it worked well in a pie dish. Your instincts are right about it being good with strawberries - I served mine with strawberries and it was wonderful.

Carolyn Jung said...

Wow, that charcoal top is a sight to behold. I remember seeing this recipe in Dorie's book and being captivated by it. Thanks to you, I'm putting it on my must-make list.

Corina said...

Your photos make this look gorgeous. I love any type of cheesecake.

acookingmizer said...

Yours looks fantastic! I like that you made it in a pie dish, was it hard to get out of the dish when you were done with it?

http://acookingmizer.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/tourteau-de-chevre/