I love the idea of this cake. ‘Tourteau’ is rock crab in French, and this is exactly what the cake looks like when it’s done. For a dramatic dessert, try this recipe, classic French and recently re-popularized by Dorie Greenspan. The French version was done in 3 small casserole bowls holding 12oz each. This is what one looked like after baking (see the crab’s shell?). Or you can bake as Dorie recommends, in one large springform pan, and it will look like the second picture.
Preheat oven to 530’F, or at the maximum temp of your oven. Yes. HOT! Very HOT!
For the pastry, use a simple butter short crust.
- 100 gr butter (1/2 stick)- unsalted
- 200 gr flour (1 cup)- all purpose unbleached
- Salt- pinch
- 1 egg
- Water- as needed
Cut butter into flour and salt with fingertips. Add egg and water. Gather pastry crust into ball. Divide into three. Roll out each third, place into deep rounded molds. Trim. Prick.
- 250 gr (8 ounces) fresh goats cheese (after draining)
- 175 gr (11 ounces) white sugar
- 50 ml milk (about a tablespoon)
- 6 eggs, separated
- 60 gr flour
- Splash of vanilla/rum/Armagnac
- Pass goat cheese through a food mill or ricer.
- Beat in 2/3 of the sugar, all of the milk and flour. (I used a whisk.)
- Whisk egg whites with the remaining sugar until stiff peaks.
- Fold in a large spoonful of whites into the cheese/yolk mixture. Stir well.
- Fold remaining whites into cheese/yolk batter.
- Pour into unbaked pastry shells.
- Place into HOT oven (530’F) for 10 minutes. The tops will puff up round and start to brown and blacken immediately. Don’t panic!
- Then turn oven down to 425′F for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
You can serve sliced/sugared fresh strawberries or plain raspberries on the side.
Thanks to Kate Hill at the Kitchen at Camont for her recipe and the dark, small torteau photo above. Thanks to Dorie Greenspan for the springform cake photo above.