Under the name Gourmandise Raisonné, Frédéric Bau explores the fundamentals of a healthy and virtuous pastry that respects the flavors and textures of the great classics, reducing excess sugar and fat. A concept that can be explored through his book available at Books For Chefs and that takes on a leading role in the project that he has just presented with Pierre Hermé.
The two pastry chefs have combined their talents to launch Gourmandise Raisonné desserts in collaboration with nutritionist Thierry Hanh, which can be enjoyed until May 30. But how did it all start? With Frédéric Bau, Hermé decided to rework two of his favorite recipes: the Tarte Infiniment Citron and the Tarte Infiniment Vanille. He also created two new products based on the Fetish flavor combinations of La Maison Pierre Hermé Paris: the Chou Orphéo (dark chocolate with a blend of Grands crus Caraibe 66%, Piedmont hazelnuts) and Constellation (strawberry, orange, and green cardamom).
In the reinterpretation of the Tarte Infiniment Vanille, in which we find three vanillas (Tahiti, Mexico, and Madagascar), the shortbread dough has been resized so that it does not contain gluten, the amount of egg yolks in the biscuit has been reduced, the flour has been replaced by semi-complete rice flour, cornstarch, and potato starch, and the ganache and mascarpone have been replaced by a preparation based on skimmed milk, egg whites, white sugar, chicory fibers and pectin, worked into two textures, one very silky and the other more unctuous and light.
The Infinitement Citron Cake has been rethought to maintain all facets of the classic lemon cake: acidity, bitterness and fragrance. Here the cream contrasts with the crunchiness of the gluten-free sweet pastry and the “fresh marshmallow with lemon”, called cloud due to its lightness, reinforces the powerful lemon flavor.
“This is a new axis of work, a new way of thinking. We must free ourselves from academic knowledge to reconstruct the pastry of tomorrow”
The intensity of the chocolate contrasts with the delicacy of the Piedmont hazelnut praline cream in the Chou Orphéo. The chocolate cream is made from chocolate and skimmed milk and is assembled like a chantilly, while the soft praline cream is made from water and Piedmont hazelnut praline. As for the choux pastry, hazelnut oil is used to replace the butter and emphasize the flavor of the hazelnuts.
Finally, Constellation pays tribute to the strawberry in three ways: the fruit in all its splendor, just sparkling, and creamy. Orange and green cardamom notes with hints of lemon delicately season the red fruit, contrasting with the softness and smoothness of a biscuit with honey and olive oil. The traditional topping has been replaced by a veil of fruity gourmandise, very little sweetened and only seasoned.
According to Hermé, this project allows “exploring new ways to offer a more and more greedy pastry, but also more respectful with one’s well-being. This is a new axis of work, a new way of thinking. We must free ourselves from academic knowledge to reconstruct the pastry of tomorrow without ever losing sight of flavors, textures, emotions, and the pleasure it should provide “.