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Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Religieuse

Many stories surround this mysterious looking pastry, but one thing is sure. The curious shape that this pastry holds, with its intricate decorations, will catch everyone's attention. Some say that, the way this pastry is decorated. It would then remind us of a nun's uniform, which gave it the name "Religieuse", meaning a nun.

Today, let's go back to the mid 19th's century for a more formal history. The famous pastry chef Frascati created this pastry aroudn 1855. It had originally created in a square shaped pastry filled with pastry cream and then decorated with whipped cream. Since the invention of piping tips a couple years after, the Religieuse took its current shape of 2 balls stacked one top of each other. Both spheres are filled with a flavored cream and then they are stacked and decorated with a buttercream.

(Thank you to Sébastien Durand for this wonderful information about the Religieuse!)

Let's get them assembled!

Step one:
- Bake off the choux paste which you have piped in circles. One about 2 inches and the other 1 inch. Make sure that you have enough of each to pair them together.

Step two:
-When they have completely cooled, fill them with pastry cream of your desired flavour. (These are chocolate) A 3-5 mm tip can be used to fill the choux balls through the top of the pastry.

Step three:
-Once they have cooled and have been filled, they are ready to dip in fondant.
Let the fondant set on each choux before you assemble them. this will give a cleaner result.

Step four:
-Have a piping bag with "creme mousseline" or buttercream. You may use a "Matfer" size A7 tip which will give you a great finished look for the decoration. For the decoration, it is easier to place the almost finished religieuse on a turn table for decorating.
For decorating, you will want to place a small amount on top of the larger choux.

Then place the smaller one on top.
Starting at the base of the small one, and going all the way up to the top of it, created a string of icing almost like a crown.

To finish her off, a rosette fitting for a queen on top.

And there you have it! :) Before you know it, you'll have an army of Religieuse just waiting to be eaten!
To taste these tasty treats, visit the Frenchway at 612 Academy in Winnipeg, MB.

Eat well, sleep well and till tomorrow!


1 comment:

  1. Can't wait to visit Winnipeg and taste all these pastries at the Frenchway on Academy Road. I love the bits of history you include about the origin of the pastries. It makes you want to taste them.
    Keep up the wonderful work.