Bourdaloue Tart with Frangipane (Tarte Bourdaloue à la Frangipane)

This elaborate tart is definitely one for a special occasion. In a simpler version, it is made with a crème d’amande (almond cream), so if you want to take it down a step, skip the frangipane, which basically means you are skipping the crème pâtissiére (pastry cream) altogether and also the macaroons. Double the proportions for the crème d’amande in this case.

But if you want to go the whole 100 miles…




Poached Pears:

  • 4-6 nice Williams pears, not too soft (for a bit of a bite, go for rather hard ones)
  • 1 liter of water
  • 500 grams of sugar
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 teaspoon of anise seeds
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of cardamon capsules
  • 1 shot of Pernod

Pâte sucrée („sugar crust“):

  • 200 grams of flour
  • 20 grams of almond powder (finely ground blanched almond)
  • 110 grams of butter
  • 80 grams of icing sugar
  • 40 grams of egg (approximately one small egg)
  • pinch of salt

Crème pâtissière (pastry cream):

  • 125 ml of whole-fat milk
  • 30 grams of finely granulated sugar
  • 30 grams of egg yolk
  • one vanilla pod
  • 10 grams of Maïzena
  • 10 grams of butter

Crème d’amande (almond cream):

  • 50 grams of soft butter
  • 50 grams of sugar
  • 50 grams of almond powder (finely ground blanched almonds)
  • 50 grams of whole egg (approximately one egg)
  • 10 grams of Maïzena


  • 20 grams of (almond) macaroon powder (macaroon shells or amarettini reduced to powder)

Decoration (optional): Nougatine aux noisettes (hazelnut croquant):

  • 100 grams of cut hazelnut
  • 250 grams of sugar
  • some water


Poached Pears (prepare approximately five days before baking):

  1. Put the water in a large saucepan, add the sugar and the lemon juice. Cut the vanilla pod in halves, remove the seeds with the back of a knife and add both the pod and the seeds to the water. Add the anise seeds. Gently press down the cardamon capsules with the back of the spoon until they burst open and add as well.
  2. Bring to the boil. In the meantime, peel the pears but leave whole, in particular do not cut away the stem.
  3. Add to the hot syrup and let simmer for approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Transfer to an airtight/sealable container previously disinfected with hot water. Let cool down, then remove the cinnamon stick and the cardamon capsules while leaving the anise seeds and the vanilla pod in the syrup. Keep cool until use.

Pâte sucrée (prepare one day before baking):

  1. Beat the butter and the sugar with a spatula until creamy.
  2. Incorporate the egg and the salt.
  3. Add the flour (previously passed through a fine sieve) and the almond powder. Mix with the spatula until you have a smooth dough.
  4. Wrap in cellophane and let rest in the fridge for at least 1 hour, ideally overnight.

Blind-baking of the crust:

  1. Take the dough out of the fridge approximately 20 to 30 minutes before use. It should still be cold but soft enough to handle it.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (fan oven).
  3. Butter a tart pan. Press the dough into the bottom of the pan and up the sides.
  4. Cover with a sheet of baking paper and weigh down with baking weights.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes, then take out of the oven and remove the weights and the baking paper. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 160 degrees Celsius.

Crème pâtissière (pastry cream):

  1. Beat the egg yolk with the sugar until creamy. Add the Maïzena.
  2. Put the milk into a saucepan. Cut the vanilla pod in halves, remove the seeds with the back of a knife. Add the seeds and the pod of the vanilla to the milk. Bring to the boil. Remove the vanilla pod.
  3. Pour half of the hot milk over the egg and sugar mix while beating energetically. Then pour this mix into the saucepan to the remaining half of the hot milk.
  4. Heat up until boiling while beating vigorously. Let thicken while continuously beating.
  5. Once you arrive at a thick cream, remove from the heat. Pour into a flat bowl or container, cover with cellophane and transfer immediately to the fridge.
  6. Use the cream once cooled down. Beat again energetically before further use.

Crème d’amande (almond cream):

  1. Beat the butter to a pommade (i.e. beat energetically/with an electric mixer, occasionally and briefly holding it over a hot water bath until just starting to melt on the edges and then removing it while continuously beating – the butter must not melt, it should after a while adopt a glossy consistency resembling hair pomade).
  2. Mix the butter and the sugar until creamy.
  3. Add the almond powder, the egg and the Maïzena. Mix with a spatula and make sure not to incorporate too much air. Use immediately of keep in the fridge until used.


  1. Mix the crème pâtissière and the crème d’amande and mix in the macaroon powder as well.

Assembling the tart:

  1. Let the pears drip of well. Keep the syrup – there will be plenty of it and the leftover is excellent and can be used for other purposes (desserts, cocktails…).
  2. Spread the frangipane over the bottom of the crust.
  3. Cut the pears into halves or quarters except one. Remove the core and stems of the pears cut in halves/quarters. Arrange in a circle on top of the cream. Lightly press into the cream. Cut off the bottom (approximately 1 cm) of the remaining whole pear. Cut out the core from the bottom but leave the stem. Place in the middle of the tart so the stem will „stick out“. Also press a little bit into the cream.
  4. Bake for approximately 30 minutes. Let cool down until lukewarm and brush lightly with some of the pear syrup. Best consumed lukewarm!

Decoration (optional): Nougatine aus noisettes (hazelnut croquant):

  1. Make a caramel from the sugar and the water: Place the sugar in a very clean saucepan. Slowly add water until the sugar just soaks through.
  2. Heat up to 165 degrees Celsius (until browning).
  3. Take off the heat and pour onto a permanent baking mat or a baking sheet (careful: very hot – make sure the surface under the mat can take the heat and do not burn yourself!).
  4. Immediately sprinkle the hazelnuts onto the caramel.
  5. Let cool down and then break into bits for decoration.
  6. (If you are more ambitious, you can also form, e.g. a ring with a cut out middle by using heat-resistant tools, which can be place on top of the tart).

After all that labour – do not forget to truly enjoy!!!

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