AnnT ? - Tarte au sucre...

ArabellaMillerSeptember 27, 2007

Ann, your photo of Tarte au sucre from the WFD thread has been haunting me! It looks delicious. So, I looked for a recipe on epicurious, and although it clearly wasn't the same, I gave it a try:

It was, and I can't believe I would ever utter these words, nauseatingly sweet. One small slice and I felt blechy. I might try it again with some toasted walnuts to add texture and dilute the sweet.

Still though, it's not what I was hoping for. Would you mind sharing your recipe? That bread looked so light and delicious.



PS Here's the recipe for the one above, if anyone's interested. I can see why people like it, just not my taste.

The recipe for this "sugar tart," a Belgian classic, comes from Auberge du Moulin Hideux. Similar to a rustic coffee cake, this treat is lovely for brunch or as an afternoon snack with coffee or tea.

Servings: Makes 10 to 12 servings.


1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

2 teaspoons dry yeast

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/4 cup whole milk

3 large egg yolks

2 large eggs

2/3 cup whipping cream

2/3 cup (packed) dark brown sugar


Butter and flour 9-inch-diameter springform pan. Mix flour, 1/4 cup sugar, yeast, lemon peel and salt in processor. Using on/off turns, add butter and blend until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add milk and 3 egg yolks. Using on/off turns, blend until soft dough forms. Using wet fingertips, press dough over bottom and 1 inch up sides of prepared pan. Cover tightly with plastic and let rise in warm draft-free area until light and puffy (dough will not double in volume), about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Whisk 2 eggs and cream in small bowl to blend. Sprinkle 1/3 cup brown sugar over bottom of tart. Pour cream mixture over. Sprinkle with remaining 1/3 cup sugar. Bake until dough puffs and browns and filling browns in spots, about 25 minutes. Transfer to rack. Cut around pan sides to loosen tart. Release pan sides. Cool 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 10 to 12 servings.

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Clearly not they're not the same, having seen Ann T's photo. I did a search & all refer to "sugar pie" & each recipe had a pie crust, with the exception of the recipe you posted & because of the yeast, I too I would have expected something more in line with Ann's.

Now I'm curious.


    Bookmark   September 27, 2007 at 5:13PM
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The crust on my pie was really soft and sticky. I liked the texture of the yeast crust, it was the filling that was just too sweet.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 7:14AM
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Oh my! Being French, that sure doesn't look like a traditional sugar pie!

Here's my aunt's recipe for Tart au Sucre. I've never made it but my mom says it's really good!

1 cup brown sugar
3 Tbsp flour
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla
Pinch of cinnamon
¾ cup Carnation milk (not 2%)
¼ cup water

Beat egg; add sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, milk, and water. Add flour and mix well. Pour into one uncooked pie shell. Bake at 350°F for about 30 minutes, until golden brown and set.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 10:14AM
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Arabella, I'm not around this morning but I'll type up the recipe for you later today. Even though I've been baking this for over 25 years, I've never typed it into my files. The recipe is out of French Regional Cooking by Anne Willan. Even though it is a Tarte Au Sugar, it is not like the sugar tart, from Quebec that I'm familiar with, but a Sugar yeast cake. And it really is a light buttery yeast dough topped with butter and brown sugar. Definitely French from the Champagne/North region of France.


    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 10:42AM
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I checked Ann's tarte au sucre picture. That's more of a cake than a traditional tarte au sucre. I'm French Canadian and my mother used to make tarte au sucre when I was little. It's sweet and rich, and is made with a pie crust.

I would, however, like to have her recipe for that picture because it still looks good!

    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 10:43AM
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Ann, thanks for that info. I did some internet research at some French websites and didn't realize that they did it two different ways. The France way, and the French Canadian way! In France, it mentioned that some did it as the "cake" and others as the "pie". The cake is like a "brioche" type of crust. It's very interesting and sounds really good.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 11:00AM
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Thanks, I'm looking forward to having both incarnations in my repertoire. (heh, get it? "repertoire", that's French. Sorry, I'm just cracking myself up).


    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 11:20AM
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this is what I think of when I hear "tarte au sucre, sugar pie" , some recipes are more caramelly, others are more sugary, it's usually done with brown sugar, cream , butter and a bit of flour. Mixed together and thrown in a pieshell.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2007 at 11:53AM
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I just made and tasted the tart and it is delicious; really not too sweet. However, I used a Pillsbury refrigerated crust and the bottom was soggy and looked underdone. Should I pre-bake the shell the next time?

    Bookmark   September 29, 2007 at 12:29PM
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I've never used Pillsbury refrigerated crust. Actually, I don't like pie crust that you buy at the supermarket. I find they brown too much too fast. My mother makes a bunch of dough for me, and I separate and freeze it until ready to use. (I can bake anything, except I can't make pie dough! hahaha At least not like my mother!)

Maybe you should prebake it a little next time if you use the same crust.

Glad you liked the filling. I've never tried it, but my mom has and says it's really good!

    Bookmark   September 29, 2007 at 1:31PM
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Sorry for the delay.

Here is the recipe.

You can follow it as is, or do what I do and just add the flour, sugar, yeast and salt into the food processor. Mix the milk with the eggs and add that to the flour mixture and then process. Add the butter and continue to process for a few seconds to knead. Then finish the kneading by hand for a minute or two. I double the recipe.


Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Tarte au Sucre
Sugar Yeast Cake

This yeast cake with a sugar topping is popular in the North, which is sugar beet country. you can double the quantitiy of dough and use half for 'pain brioche', a rich bread that the French like to toast for breakfast.

4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup light or dark brown sugar


1/3 cup of milk
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons yeast
1 1/2 cups flour (more as needed)
2 eggs
3/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter
. Make the yeast dough. Put the lukewarm milk in a small bowl, add the
sugar and add the yeast. Leave to proof. Sift the flour on a marble
slab or board and make a well in the center. Add the eggs, salt and
dissolved yeast mixture. Briefly mix the central ingredients then draw
in the flour with both hands, pulling the dough into large crumbs with
the fingertips. Knead the dough for 5 to 10 minutes or until very
smooth and elastic, adding more flour if necessary so that the dough is
not too sticky. pound the butter to soften it thoroughly, then work in
into the dough, slapping the dough on the work surface, just until the
butter is thoroughly incorporated. Transfer the dough to a light oiled
bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let rise until almost doubled in
bulk. Thoroughly butter the pie pan.

Transfer the risen dough to a floured work surface and fold it in
thirds, patting it to knock out the air. flour your hands and flatten
the dough into the base, not the sides of the pan. Let rise for 15
minutes and then spread with soft butter and sprinkle with the brown
sugar. Let rise for 15 minutes and then bake for 15 or 20 minutes in a
400°F oven. Serve at room temperature.

Pain Brioche

After folding the risen dough in thirds on the floured work surface,
shape into a rectangle and set in a buttered 20 x 10 x 6 cm. loaf pan
and leave to rise for about 30 minutes. Brush with an egg glaze and
bake in 400°F oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2007 at 11:52AM
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i just LOVE yeasty doughs and that one looks good enough to make me want to mess with flour one more time, ann. really lovely!

    Bookmark   September 30, 2007 at 6:03PM
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Don't tell your mom, but I made the pie using Pillsbury sugar cookie dough as the crust. It looked gorgeous but I didn't taste it B/C I gave it to a dear friend who lost her mom. Hope to duplicate the recipe soon so that I can taste it.

Thanks again for a "keeper."

    Bookmark   October 1, 2007 at 5:01PM
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AnnT, I don't know how I missed this recipe before, but thank you so much for sharing. I made this today and it was such a lovely recipe! DH will certainly appreciate the new addition to my Friday dinner. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2007 at 12:55PM
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You are welcome Vagardengirl. You can use the dough for other things too. I made a Chocolate Brioch/Babka this week using the same dough.


    Bookmark   October 5, 2007 at 9:42PM
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AnnT, I can see the additional applications with this recipe! Just adding dried fruits and a grating of almond paste would also make a lovely cake. =) It really yields a lovely dough.
It was a hit for breakfast coffee this morning. Thank you again!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2007 at 9:15AM
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Vagardengirl ,
My favorite additions (whatever I'm in the mood for) is adding one of the following to the dough: vanilla extract, orange rind, lemon rind. Other additions have been dried cranberries, raisins & nuts, & chocolate chips hand worked into the dough.


    Bookmark   October 8, 2007 at 5:02PM
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Ann, what is the sugar topping like? Where I grew up, there was bakery (Feddersen's) that made a coffee cake with a plain sugar topping that was to die for. The cake was a sweet, rich dough and this sounds very similar to it. I'd like to give it a try this weekend.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2007 at 10:33PM
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lucyny, nice to meet you! I think your suggestions sound perfect with this rich dough. I plan to make again for Thanksgiving breakfast using orange zest and Mom will love it! =)

    Bookmark   October 9, 2007 at 4:25PM
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Virginia, the sugar/butter topping forms a kind of a sugary carmalized crust. Soooo good.


    Bookmark   October 9, 2007 at 8:01PM
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