If you’ve already browsed through the Pâtisserie section of my website, you already know that I have a weakness for chestnuts, especially when it comes to the Clément Faugier chestnut spread. [Warning: be prepared if you click on that link, their website looks terrible!] Today, I’m making use of it in the famous Mont Blanc recipe.
The Mont Blanc, also known as “torche aux marrons”, is a famous French pastry. Made with french meringue, whipped cream and chestnut-butter cream, it lays on an optional base of sweet crust pastry. Here, I prefer to warn you, it is very sweet and “chestnutty”: you’ll either love it or hate it (like the Marmite)!
If you are heading to Paris and want to decide which side you’re on, here is my TOP 3:
They all are to die for, send me your pictures when you’ll try them!
My recipe is very similar to the Pâtisserie Stohrer one. I also cover the sweet crust pastry with a fine layer of blueberry preserves to bring a sour note. I would love to top my Mont Blanc with candied chestnuts (marrons glacés). Unfortunately, they are very difficult to find in the US and very expensive. I’ll probably try to candied my own next season. Have you already tried to do that by yourself?
Before heading to the recipe, a last word about the Clément Faugier chestnut spread. As I already told you while baking the chestnut mousse, you can purchase this paste on Amazon or ask somebody who visits France to bring it to you. Don’t ask my mother otherwise you’ll end up with 4 lbs of it!
Ingredients for 6 individual Mont Blanc
Sweet Crust Pastry (Optional)
- 1/4 cup (70g) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup (50g) icing sugar
- 2 tbsp (15g) almond flour
- 1/2 egg (25g) at room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 cup (125g) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tsp fresh squizzed lemon juice
- 3/4 cup (140g) caster sugar
- Half pint (230g) cold Heavy Whipping Cream with no additive
- 1/2 cup (100g) cold Mascarpone Cheese
- 10 oz (300g) Clément Faugier chestnut spread
- 2 1/2 tbsp (35g) softened unsalted butter
- 1 tsp rhum
- Blueberry preserves – about 6 tsp
- 6 blueberries to top the Mont Blanc
- 6 baby meringues
OK, I hear you! Those are a lot of different preparations. Don’t worry, the good news is that you can bake the meringue a few days before and the sweet crust pastry a day earlier.
Start with the meringues…
- Pre-heat the oven to 300°F (150°C). In the mixing bowl of an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites and lemon juice until stiff. Add the sugar a little at a time in at least 4 times until fully incorporated – about 7 minutes on high speed. The meringue should be very stiff and glossy.
- Cover a baking tray with parchment paper. With a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip, pipe the meringue into 6 discs slightly smaller than your tart moulds. Don’t forget to pipe the 6 baby meringues for the topping. I prefer using a fluted tip, more decorative, but it’s up to you.
- Lower down your oven temperature to 210°F (100°C) and bake the meringues for 1 hour. Then, turn off your oven and let them sit there for an extra hour with the door ajar.
…Keep going on with the sweet crust pastry…
Note: Be very careful with the flour you will be working with. The sweet crust pastry can easily turn into your worst nightmare with an inappropriate flour.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix with a spatula the butter, icing sugar, almond flour, half an egg, salt and vanilla. Once the mixture is homogenous, pour the flour all at once and mix with the hook of your stand mixer until the flour is fully incorporated.
- On a lightly floured surface, gather the dough into 6 balls and flatten into a disc. Wrap each one in plastic film and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
- On a floured surface, roll out the pastry into a circle large enough to line a 90 mm (3 1/2 inches) tart mould. Line all 6 moulds and place them on a baking tray. Prick the bottom of the case all over with a fork. Chill for 30 minutes.
- Pre-heat your oven to 325°F (170°C). Bake the pie case for 20 minutes. Take them out of the oven when they’re golden and smell delicious. Put aside.
… and now, the chantilly…
Tips: Place the bowl of your stand mixer and the whip in the fridge for a few minutes before beating the cream.
- Place the mascarpone cheese and the heavy whipped cream in the bowl of your stand mixer. Whisk at medium speed for two to three minutes until the chantilly is stiff. Do not overbeat it or it will turn into butter.
- Set aside in a pastry bag with a plain tip.
… to finish with the chestnut cream.
- Place the chestnut cream, the softened butter and the rhum in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix with the whip on high speed for two minutes.
- Pour this mixture into a pastry bag with a narrow plain tip.
Let the magic happen!
It’s finally time to combine your preparations all together.
- Spread 1 tsp of blueberry preserves evenly on each one of the pie case. Fill them to the edge with a layer of chantilly. Place a disc of meringue and cover it with another layer of chantilly. Use a spatula to make even domes.
- Cover each pie with chestnut cream. You can decide of the pattern you most like. Top each cake with a blueberry and a baby meringue.
Mont Blanc are now ready! You can enjoy them with an espresso to contrast their sweetness. This dessert will keep in the fridge for three days. Actually, they’re even better the second day because the meringue is a little bit softened by the chantilly!