Classic Almond Pithivier with Cherries
Almond frangipane and sweet cherries baked in puff pastry.
We went out to dinner Friday night with some friends and after dinner the waiter gave us complimentary Amaretto liquor. When I smelled the Amaretto, it suddenly reminded me of frangipane, and I could not stop thinking about it….All day Saturday I kept thinking about frangipane. No matter what I did, there it was in my mind.
I got inspired when I went to the market and saw all the sweet cherries. Frangipane is the main focus of this dessert. It is so easy to make. It just takes a few ingredients, a few minutes and your trusty food processor.
1 heaping C sliced blanched almonds
1/2 C sugar
1 stick softened room temp butter
1-1/2 Tablespoons flour
1 egg yolk
1 whole egg
1 Tablespoon + 1 tsp. Kirsch (cherry flavored liquor)
1 tsp. almond extract
1 C sweet cherries; washed, dried, pitted and cut in half
Store bought Puff pastry;thawed [I like Dufour if you can find it] (enough for 2 nine to 10 inch rounds)
Egg wash (one egg yolk mixed with 1 T half/half or heavy cream)
Sugar glaze (1 T corn syrup mixed with 1-1/2 tsp. water)
1. Cut out 2 rounds of puff pastry; cut one 9 round. Cut another round only slightly bigger than the first; this will be the top portion. Set both aside in the refrigerator to chill.
2. Prepare the Frangipane:
In a food processor place the sliced almonds, sugar and process until finely ground. Add the butter and process until smooth. Add the flour and pulse/process. Don’t over process or you will form gluten. Add the egg, egg yolk and pulse again until smooth. Add the flavorings pulse/process until smooth. Remove the frangipane to a bowl and carefully fold in the cherries. Chill the frangipane until ready.
3. Prepare a 1/2 sheet pan with a piece of parchment paper. Set the smaller round of puff pastry on the parchment lined pan and spread the frangipane in the center of the puff round so that the filling is about an inch thick but leaving about 1 to 1 -1/2 inch border. Egg wash around the border lightly; being careful not to get the edge of the pastry too wet. This will ensure the top pastry can seal in the filling when placed. Place the top pastry circle over the filling and carefully press out any air pockets and seal up the filling. With the tip of a sharp knife score decorative marks on the top circle in an arc pattern being careful not to go all the way in with the knife. [See the picture below as a guide]. Take the back of the knife and use it to tuck in all around the edge around the pastry. Chill the prepared pithivier pastry for one hour.
4. After an hour brush the pithivier with egg wash being careful not to let the wash run down the side of the puff or it will not rise correctly.
5. Bake for 15 minutes at 425º . Reduce the heat to 350º and bake for 20 minutes. Brush the puff with the glaze and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Let the puff cool on a wire rack and serve while still warm.