Tartine Bakery's fame extends not only within San Francisco but other parts near and far. They received a James Beard Award for Outstanding Pastry Chef in 2008 which is like an Academy Award in the culinary world. So it was extremely gratifying for me when I was able to replicate, at home, one of their most popular cakes.
I had my first taste of the Passion Fruit and Lime Bavarian a few weekends ago with my sister. Yes, there was a line when we got there - as there always is - but in the end waiting for 30 minutes was so worth it. One bite of the moist chiffon cake filled with tart passion fruit bavarian cream, covered with lightly sweetened whipped cream and coconut shavings and I was hooked. I had to try and make it for myself and lucky for me Tartine included the recipe in their eponymous cookbook.
The cake was perfect to bring to a family gathering to celebrate my Mom's birthday. As I've mentioned before my people don't care for overly sweet desserts so I thought this cake was the ideal choice. Boy was I right. My family loved the cake, although one of my brothers said it was too tart - hmmm, there's always one dissenter in any big family...lol. My sister commented that the cake tasted exactly like the one we bought at Tartine, surely confirmation that this recipe was a winner!
While the ingredient list and instructions may seem long the actual creation of this dessert was pretty straight forward. Make the chiffon and passion fruit filling, assemble the layers and frost. I spread the process over several days to make it more manageable. In the recipe you end up with an extra layer of chiffon so I made little parfait versions of the cake in glass Weck canning jars. I'd seen desserts presented like this at my favorite restaurant, ad hoc, and thought it was such a great idea.
Stay tuned to this blog as I'm sure I'll be creating more fabulous treats from Tartine!