Pumpkin Spice White Chocolate Mousse Hazelnut Mini Cakes

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That’s right, I use pumpkin (pie) spice year–round. It’s one of the best spice blends ever created in my opinion and I think it would be a shame to restrict it to fall season, I love it any time of the year. It’s definitely a winner in these hazelnut mini cakes.

Pumpkin Spice White Chocolate Mousse Hazelnut Mini Cakes Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

A few months ago I posted my recipe for pumpkin spice white chocolate mousse and I knew that it would be a smasher as a frosting on a cake but it took me a while to find the perfect cake for it. This here is it. It’s a hazelnut butter cake (hazelnut and pumpkin spice are a beautiful combination) and I adapted the cake batter recipe from Bon Appetit.

I started with a full-size cake but that didn’t work for the frosting. The mousse is not as firm as, say, a buttercream and just wasn’t able to stand up to all that cake. But mini cakes were a completely different story. I baked them in 4-ounce ramekins, topped them with a few dollops of the mousse and that worked out beautifully. The mousse is similar to whipped cream in texture, complements the cake wonderfully and the proportions are absolutely perfect.

Pumpkin Spice White Chocolate Mousse Hazelnut Mini Cakes
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 8
Ingredients:
For the frosting:
  • 4 ounces white chocolate (I recommend Baker's Premium White Chocolate Baking Chocolate Bar)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin spice
For the cakes:
  • ½ cup raw hazelnuts (more for garnish)
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
Instructions:
For the frosting:
  1. Cut the chocolate into small chunks, then put it in a saucepan along with the cream and the pumpkin spice.
  2. Turn on the heat and slowly dissolve the chocolate. Don't let the cream get too hot, it shouldn't simmer, it should just be hot enough to melt the chocolate.
  3. Transfer the mix into a bowl and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
  4. Beat the mix with an electric mixer until firm.
For the cakes:
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease eight 4-ounce ramekins and dust with flour.
  3. Process hazelnuts and granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground.
  4. Whisk the ground nuts with the flour, spice, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
  5. Beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy, 2-3 minutes.
  6. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until well incorporated.
  7. Beat in the dry ingredients.
  8. Fill batter into the ramekins and bake until a toothpick comes out clean (20 to 25 minutes).
  9. Let cool, then turn out.
  10. Pipe the frosting onto the cakes and sprinkle with chopped hazelnuts.
Notes:
The cake batter recipe is adapted from Bon Appetit.

Food Photography and Styling: I vaguely remembered having these hazelnut-shaped and -colored dried flowers around in a rarely–opened drawer (I got them from Michael’s or Hobby Lobby years ago) and thought they would go well with the actual hazelnuts here. The “tablecloth” is a large linen napkin and the backdrop is the backside of a white marble tile and I think it fit perfectly here. I paid close attention to the rule of thirds and placed the cake topping and the flowers in the little vase on intersection points. The fork was very attention-grabbing when it was closer to the cake so I ended up partially hiding it behind it.

For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

Chai-Spiced Custard Pear Tart with Toasted Almonds and Salted Caramel

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Custard Pear Tart with Salted Caramel

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

I was sipping a chai latte while wandering through the produce section at the grocery store a few weeks ago and the idea for this tart popped into my head when I walked past the pears. Ah, pears. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with them actually. They look beautiful and taste fantastic when they are ripe but have you ever found a ripe pear in the store? Me neither. They are always hard as a rock and give me no indication whatsoever as to how long they might take to become edible. These pears here took nearly two weeks but I admit it was worth the wait, the tart turned out really wonderful.

Here’s how it goes: you start with a regular pie crust and while that’s pre-baking you infuse a cream/milk/sugar mix with my standard chai spices: fresh ginger, cardamom, cloves, a cinnamon stick and black peppercorns. Once that’s done you turn it into a custard by mixing in a few eggs, pour it into the tart shell and then simply lay the sliced pears into it. Slide the tart back in the oven and whip up a caramel sauce to drizzle over it. Chill the tart, then add a few toasted sliced almonds for a bit of crunch and a sprinkle of fleur de sel and voila, that’s it!

Pears

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

Chai Spiced Custard Pear Tart with Toasted Almonds and Salted Caramel
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients:
For the crust:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons shortening
  • 3 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons ice water (more if needed)
For the filling:
  • ¾ cups heavy cream
  • ¼ cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 half-inch piece of ginger, thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper corns
  • 3 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • 2 ripe Bosc pears
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 egg
  • toasted sliced almonds
  • caramel sauce (I have a recipe here, just leave out the pumpkin spice)
  • fleur de sel
Instructions:
For the crust:
  1. Whisk flour and salt together in a bowl.
  2. Add the shortening and the butter and cut them in with a pastry cutter until you have the consistency of a meal.
  3. Sprinkle the water over the fat/flour mix and bring the dough together with your hands. (If the dough doesn't come together, add a little more water, 1 teaspoon at a time).
  4. Form the dough into a disc, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
  5. Roll out the dough and fit into an 8-inch greased tart pan.
  6. Put back in the fridge for 10 minutes.
  7. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Line the dough with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes.
  10. Remove the weights and the foil and bake for another 20 minutes. While the crust bakes, make the custard.
For the custard:
  1. Add cream, milk, sugar and spices to a sauce pan and bring to a boil.
  2. Turn the heat off, cover and let the mix steep for about 30 minutes.
  3. Peel, core and slice the pears. Set aside.
  4. Strain the spices out of the cream mix.
  5. Whisk the egg and the yolks in a bowl, then whisk the cream/spice mix into them.
  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 275 degrees F.
  7. Fill the custard into the pie shell, lay the pear slices into it and bake until the custard is set (50 minutes or more).
  8. Let the tart cool to room temperature, then drizzle with caramel sauce and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
  9. Add the sliced almonds on top and sprinkle with fleur de sel.

Food Photography and Styling: I was actually going for elegant with this tart but it ended up looking a little more, err, rough around the edges so I went with a dark, rustic scene instead. Since the fruit is completely hidden in this tart I set two raw pears in the back to tell the viewer that this is a pear tart (and I posted a still life of pears as well for good measure). The sauce server and the little salt dish fit with the salted caramel topping and the knife implies that someone is there, about to slice a piece.
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

Chai-Spiced Custard Pear Tart with Salted Caramel

Coffee Borgia Mousse

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Coffee Borgia Mousse

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

This dessert was inspired by one of my favorite espresso drinks, the coffee Borgia. A Borgia is like a mocha (espresso, chocolate syrup, steamed milk) but with orange zest mixed in. It’s a wonderful flavor combination that I recreated in this chocolate mousse with melted bittersweet chocolate, a bit of heavy cream, espresso powder and orange zest. The recipe is very easy to make, takes no more than about 15 minutes total and you can easily scale it up and make a fancy dessert for a large crowd.

Coffee Borgia Mousse
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 2
Ingredients:
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (I used a Ghirardelli 60 percent cacao bittersweet chocolate baking bar)
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon very finely grated orange zest (about one orange)
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • two thin orange slices as garnish
Instructions:
  1. Melt the chocolate along with the cream and the espresso powder in a bowl over simmering water. Once the chocolate is melted, take it off the water pot. Stir in the orange zest then set aside.
  2. Whisk the egg yolk with the sugar in a bowl until lighter in color and texture than when you started.
  3. Quickly whisk the chocolate mix into the egg/sugar mix in two to three batches.
  4. With an electric mixer, whip the egg white with the cream of tartar to stiff peaks.
  5. Whisk about half of the whipped egg whites into the chocolate.
  6. Carefully fold the remaining whipped egg white into the chocolate mix (take a half-turn around the bowl with the whisk and then shake the mousse through the tines of the whisk).
  7. As soon as no streaks remain, fill the mousse into individual serving bowls. Work quickly because the mousse will set very fast.
  8. Garnish with the orange slices and serve by itself or with whipped cream.

Food Photography and Styling: I was going for rustic with a touch of elegance here so I used rough wood planks as a surface (the same ones that I used here) and a fancy cocktail glass to hold the mousse. The thin orange slice on the surface of the mousse wasn’t a strong enough clue that this dessert is quite heavily orange-flavored in my opinion so I added more orange in the back of the frame to reinforce the idea. The set still looked a bit naked so I placed a few chocolate squares here and there. I observed the rule of thirds very closely here and placed the glass along the right vertical dividing line and the orange slice on the mousse on an intersection point.
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

 

Coconut Cardamom Macaroons

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Coconut Cardamom Macaroons Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

I recently discovered macaroons as a fabulous way to use up leftover egg whites (of which I always seem to have tons). My default had long been meringues but I actually like macaroons much better. They are incredibly easy to make (easier than meringues actually), require only pantry ingredients and taste fantastic. Here I used the basic recipe from Baking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America but added my own flavorings (cardamom). So if you find yourself with a bucket of egg whites you don’t know what to do with, this is a great option!

P.S.: One egg white weighs about 30 grams, in case you have a bunch and lost count. 

Coconut Cardamom Macaroons
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 15
Ingredients:
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2½ teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ cups shredded or shaved unsweetened coconut
  • 3 egg whites
Instructions:
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Whisk cardamom, 2 tablespoons sugar and flour together in a bowl. Set aside.
  3. Add remaining sugar, coconut and egg whites to a bowl and set over a pot of simmering water.
  4. Stirring continuously, heat the mixture until it starts to thicken and turns bubbly (about 3 minutes).
  5. Take the mix off the heat and fold in the cardamom/sugar/flour mix.
  6. Using a 1-tablespoon measuring scoop drop the batter into little heaps onto a parchment-lined large cookie sheet.
  7. Bake until the macaroons are golden-brown (15 to 20 minutes).

Food Photography and Styling: I eat these little cookies as an afternoon snack with a glass of milk so I went for an afternoon coffee table atmosphere. As usual I lit the set with my strobe (through the doorframe like I did here). The macaroons sitting directly on the plate looked a little naked so I put a few paper doilies underneath them (I keep a package I bought from Wilton around and find that they can come in handy every now and then). The backdrop is a marble tile that I think worked really well with the fabric I used here.
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

 

Coffee Liqueur Cream Puffs

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Who knew cream puffs were so easy to make? Very pretty to look at and very tasty to boot these little beauties are flavored with coffee liqueur inside and out.

Coffee Liqueur Cream Puffs Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

Netflix suggested the other day that I watch The Great British Bake Off. I don’t always do what Netflix tells me to but I did in this case and I am glad because this baking reality TV show is awesome. For those of you not familiar with the program, a bunch of amateur bakers enter a several week-long baking competition held in a tent in the beautiful British countryside. They are judged by two accomplished bakers and TV personalities with the (actual and awesome) names Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood.

The premise may sound boring but it really isn’t, it’s very entertaining AND educational to boot! Over the course of the season I learned about all kinds of interesting pastries, some that I had vaguely been familiar with and one that I had never ever heard of (hot water crust pastry, which I will come to in a future post).

One of the pastries that caught my attention was pate a choux (pronounced “shoe”), the dough that’s used for eclairs and cream puffs. I had heard of it but never given it enough thought to develop any interest in actually making it until I saw the bake off contestants make mouthwatering eclairs. So I went to my cookbook shelf and dusted off my trusty copy of Baking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America. It’s a great book and I have no idea why I don’t consult it more often.

I followed the CIA’s cream puff choux pastry recipe to the t and unsurprisingly it worked out beautifully. To get ideas for a filling and glaze I simply took a peak into our liqueur cabinet and didn’t have to look further than the coffee liqueur, one of my favorite dessert ingredients. I mixed it with powdered sugar for the glaze and whipped it into heavy cream for the filling. And that’s it! The preparation of everything is easy and fuss-free and the result delicious and pretty!

cookbook

Coffee Liqueur Cream Puffs
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients:
For the pastry:
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup bread flour, sifted
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg white
For the filling:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur (I used Kapali)
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
For the glaze:
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons coffee liqueur (I used Kapali)
Instructions:
For the pastry:
  1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Add milk, butter, sugar and salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Turn the heat down to medium, then add the sifted flour all at once and stir with a wooden spoon.
  5. Cook, continuing to stir, until the dough starts to peel away from the sides of the saucepan.
  6. Transfer the dough to a bowl, then beat on medium speed until it's cooled down to lukewarm.
  7. Add the eggs, one at a time, then add the egg white.
  8. Fill the dough into a large piping bag with a large, round tip and pipe about 20 dollops onto the baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325 degrees F and continue to bake until the puffs are golden-brown, about another 20 minutes.
  10. Let the puffs cool completely, then slice in half horizontally.
For the filling:
  1. Whip all ingredients to stiff peaks.
  2. Fill into a piping bag and fill into the cream puffs.
For the glaze:
  1. Whisk liqueur with powdered sugar and drizzle over the cream puffs.

Food Photography and Styling: I wanted to create a relaxed afternoon feel in this photo so lit the photo from the side (with my strobe) to make it look like the cream puffs were sitting next a window with afternoon light coming in at a low angle. To contrast the round shapes of the puffs I set them on a rectangular plate and I thought that worked nicely. The background was a bit empty so I set my small (only about 5 inches high) flask in the back and filled it with milk. I did like the big bubble in the cream of the front puff, I thought it gave it character so I didn’t clone it out. :)
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

 

Rum-Spiced Pecan Chocolate Bark

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Rum Spiced Pecan Chocolate Bark Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

I’ve got a spinoff recipe from my recent rum-spiced pecan butter and chocolate cookies today and it’s beautifully easy. You start by making a batch of rum-spiced pecans by cooking the chopped nuts in a rum/sugar/butter/cinnamon/cardamom mix and then let them air dry. After that all you have to do is mix them with coconut oil and bittersweet chocolate, spread the mix on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet and let it harden in the fridge. Makes a terrific snack along with a glass of milk! :)

Rum Spiced Pecan Chocolate Bark
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 6
Ingredients:
For the rum-spiced pecans:
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons rum
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup pecans, finely chopped
For the chocolate bark:
  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 cup rum-spiced pecans
Instructions:
For the rum-spiced pecans:
  1. Mix granulated sugar, cinnamon and cardamom together in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Cover a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper. Set aside.
  3. Add rum, brown sugar and butter to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the pecans, then turn the heat off.
  5. Stir the pecans with a rubber spatula until they are evenly coated and all the liquid has been soaked up by the nuts.
  6. Sprinkle the spice mix over the nuts and stir them around.
  7. Distribute the nuts onto the parchment or wax paper and separate them using a fork.
  8. Let the nuts sit to dry for 3 hours.
For the chocolate bark:
  1. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Set aside.
  2. Add chocolate, coconut oil and rum-spiced pecans to a glass bowl and set over a pot of simmering water.
  3. Once the chocolate starts to melt, stir occasionally until you have a homogeneous mixture.
  4. Pour the chocolate mix onto the aluminum foil and spread into an even layer using a rubber spatula.
  5. Transfer the sheet to the fridge.
  6. Once the bark has hardened completely break it into pieces and serve.

Food Photography and Styling: To me, the edges of the chocolate shards are the most interesting feature of this bark so I wanted to be sure to show them nicely by lighting them dramatically from the side. The bark is sitting on a metal candle plate that I got from the World Market a few years back. I love that plate as a prop because it’s not very reflective and also the perfect size for food photos. I didn’t think the photo needed any additional props because the tower of bark looked quite interesting all by itself. As usual, I used my strobe to light the set.
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

 

Rum-Spiced Pecan Butter and Chocolate Cookies

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Rum Spiced Pecan Chocolate Cookie Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

The holidays are over but at least here in Colorado winter is gonna keep going for a few more months and comforting, buttery cookies that complement Irish coffees sipped after dinner will continue to be in need. Which brings me to today’s recipe. It’s a simple vanilla cookie brushed with a chocolate ganache and sprinkled with chopped pecans that are soaked in a rum/sugar/butter/cinnamon/cardamom mix. The cookies are delicate, buttery and crunchy and provide the perfect canvas for the cinnamon and citrusy cardamom as well as the (subtle) rum flavor in the pecans. Happy snowy and cozy winter evenings!

Rum Spiced Pecan Butter and Chocolate Cookies
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 40
Ingredients:
For the spiced pecans:
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons rum
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup pecans, finely chopped
For the cookies:
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • pinch of salt
For the chocolate dip:
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
Instructions:
For the spiced pecans:
  1. Mix granulated sugar, cinnamon and cardamom together in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Cover a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper. Set aside.
  3. Add rum, brown sugar and butter to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the pecans, then turn the heat off.
  5. Stir the pecans with a rubber spatula until they are evenly coated and all the liquid has been soaked up by the nuts.
  6. Sprinkle the spice mix over the nuts and stir them around.
  7. Distribute the nuts onto the parchment or wax paper and separate them using a fork.
  8. Let the nuts sit to dry for 3 hours.
For the cookies:
  1. Beat butter and granulated sugar until well combined and creamy.
  2. Beat in the vanilla extract.
  3. Add the flour and the salt and beat until the dough starts to form clumps.
  4. Gather the dough into a ball with your hands, then flatten into a disc, cut into two pieces, wrap each piece in plastic wrap and put in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  5. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  6. Roll out one of the two disc halves between two sheets of plastic wrap.
  7. Cut out the cookies and bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet until they start to brown (12 to 15 minutes).
  8. While the first batch bakes, roll out the second disc, then bake.
  9. Let the cookies cool completely.
For the chocolate dip:
  1. Add cream and chocolate to a bowl and warm over a pot of simmering water.
  2. Stir until everything is well combined and no chocolate clumps remain.
  3. Brush the chocolate onto the cookies, then sprinkle with the nut mix.

Food Photography and Styling: These winter cookies are meant for after dinner when it’s dark outside so I tried to mimic dinner table light and a general dinner table atmosphere in this photo. I kept everything extremely simple because with any more propping going on in the frame and a less closeup composition the individual components in these cookies were difficult to fully see, they all started to blend together into a mush. As I’m sure you guessed, I used my strobe to light the set.
For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.

 

Tarragon and Caramel Pear Tarts

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Yes, you read that right, these are sweet caramel pear tarts flavored with fresh tarragon! The herb works perfectly with the sweet fruit and caramel sauce.

Tarragon Caramel Pear Tarts

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

Here’s how this recipe came about: I have come across tarragon in dessert dishes a few times now, once in a restaurant (where my friend had a sweet tarragon tart that accompanied a sorbet) and several times in various trendy food magazines but I had never used it in a dessert dish myself. Then the other day I made caramel pear tarts and was really struck by how boring and usual their flavor was. Into my head popped tarragon! Its liquorice-like flavor would really liven up these tarts, I thought to myself, so I made another batch and baked some chopped, fresh tarragon into it. It turned out wonderfully, all the flavors complemented each other perfectly and the tarragon added something new and exciting. Definitely a winner in my book, I hope you like it too! :)

Tarragon and Caramel Pear Tarts
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 6
Ingredients:
For the tarts:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 5 firm Seckel pears, peeled, cored and cut in half (you'll need only 9 halves for this recipe, I suggest you eat the 10th as a snack)
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 puff pastry sheet, thawed
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • caramel sauce (I've got a recipe here)
Instructions:
  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Melt the butter in a pan, then add the pear halves and cook until tender.
  3. Mix cinnamon, sugar and cornstarch in a bowl, then sprinkle over the pears.
  4. Sprinkle 9 small mounds of tarragon onto the the puff pastry sheet, then set the pear halves on top of them.
  5. Cut the puff pastry into 9 squares so that one pear half is sitting in the center of each square.
  6. Bake the tarts until they are golden-brown (20-25 minutes).
  7. Drizzle or brush with caramel sauce.

Food Photography and Styling: Since the tarragon is the special twist in this recipe I wanted to be sure to show it so instead of photographing the whole tarts from an overhead perspective (which looked quite nice) I cut the tarts open and showed one of them from the side with the tarragon filling visible. I had meant for the creamer to be the vessel that held the caramel sauce but the sauce looked very dark in it, so I emptied it and figured it could be filled with milk for the tea instead. The “tablecloth” is a large linen napkin (isn’t it amazing how large some napkins are? This thing could cover my entire upper body!) and I thought its color worked great with the brown of the tarts. I used my strobe to light the set.

For info on what type of camera and lighting equipment I used head on over to my FAQ page.