How to layer pastry cream on top of a curd


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I want to make a tart in which the bottom layer is a fruit curd. On top of that I want to place a layer of pastry cream. How can I apply the pastry cream without disturbing the fruit curd?

Going further, how could I then apply a layer of chocolate ganache on top of the pastry cream without disturbing that?

Thanks.
 
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Chill the curd completely and use the pastry cream when it is thoroughly and freshly whipped.

Same story with the ganache. Completely chill (min 3 hours in the fridge, preferably 8 hours or overnight) the curd+pastry cream then add the freshly made and smooth consistency ganache.

What is the precise recipe and method you are using? Can you provide a link?
 
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Thanks for your suggestions. There is no single recipe. My concept is to make a tart reminiscent of a chocolate eclair with a tropical fruit (mango) enhancement.

The tart shell and mango curd are from:
https://zoebakes.com/2018/06/07/mango-curd-tart/
although any standard crust recipe would do.

For the pastry cream and the chocolate ganache I typically use joyofbaking.com:
Pastry Cream is part of her fruit tart recipe:
https://www.joyofbaking.com/FruitTart.html

Chocolate Ganache is here:
https://www.joyofbaking.com/ganache.html

I realize the pastry cream and chocolate ganache yields might be more than I need, but of course having leftovers of those is not a problem.

Even with chilling, I was worried that attempting to spread the pastry cream would interfere with the mango curd and the same for the chocolate ganache layer. I was wondering whether I should consider piping each to minimize the "disturbance" of the layer underneath. I don't have much experience with piping, but this would not require the same level of skill as fancy piping on a cake.
 
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You are building an entremet.

Chilling and use of gelatin make this easier. You also need good spreading skills with a proper metal flexible pastry spatula and technique. Watch Bruno Albouze's videos on YouTube. I wouldn't pipe this but it's your call. You could use a pastry bag with a good size hole cut in it to get the product roughly where it needs to be. Then finish with an pastry spatula.

Make the curd with a sheet of gelatin. Then chill it. It will set up nicely.

Pastry cream when freshly whipped is smooth and spreadable. Make it with a sheet of gelatin when warm, chill, then whip, then spread onto the curd, then chill again.

Use the ganache at the earliest time possible when it is still a bit warm. It will be spreadable and maybe pourable if you adjust the ratio more toward cream. Add it to the chilled lower layers, then chill. A sheet of gelatin in the ganache when blending the warm ingredients will also help.

What you are describing is possible. It takes time and tuning the ingredients so they behave they way you want them to.

If you try to make this item in one go, without hours of chilling between layers, you will not be successful.
 
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I would recommend Pierre Hermes' technique when making a curd.



Zoe's method is the old way of doing things in which the butter is cooked with the mixture. this separates the butter and produces a greasy final product.





Pierre Hermes cooks the sugar, fruit juice, and eggs first, then emulsifies the butter into the mixture after cooking and cooling some.



This produces a smooth and creamy bright filling that is far superior to the cooked butter curds and fillings.



Artificially thickened curds (cornstarch or gelatin) have a terrible texture. Since they are gooey and thick they have a very unpleasant mouth-feel.



Bon Appétit did a version of Pierre Hermes’ curd with mangoes. Smitten Kitchen blog posted a version of the Bon Appétit version. She hand whips the butter into the mixture. But it is normally done with a food processor.



I wrote a post on lemon curd using Hermès’ recipe and technique. And there are other explanations of the technique online.



The key is cooking the mixture to the correct temperature. The technique produces such a superior filling it's pretty much the standard among pastry chefs.



Regarding ganache…
Two important aspects of ganache:

1. Using Heavy cream, 35% milkfat. Regular cream does not have enough milkfat at around 30%.

2. The ratio of couverture chocolate to heavy cream. Yes, the chocolate should be couverture.




Ganache ratios

Glaze: pourable 1:2
  • Chocolate 100%
  • Heavy cream 200%


Ganache for Filling: 1:1
  • Chocolate 100%
  • Heavy cream 100%


Whipped ganache (truffles, fillings, etc) 2:1
  • Chocolate 100%
  • Heavy cream 50%


When layering fillings in a shell use a pastry bag fitted with a piping tip no more than 1/2”. Even layers create a pleasant aesthetic when sliced and plated, and more importantly, an even surface is necessary when glazing. Just be beware with pastry cream under a glaze you’re not going to have the best-looking results.



Chill the bottom layer completely before piping on the next layer of filling.

You’ll need to place plastic wrap on the surface of the curd and pastry cream when chilling otherwise it will form a skin.

For pastry cream recipe see pastry chef Eddy Van Damn. I wouldn’t use gelatin to set a pastry cream as it will create a glue like texture.



If you want to make a chocolate glaze using cocoa powder


Chocolate Glaze:

6g gelatin (in sheet form)

40g water

120g sugar

40g unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

80g whipping cream (min 35% fat)

Instructions:

Put gelatin into large bowl of cold water.

Over medium heat, stir sugar and water until dissolved then bring to boil.

Pour it over cocoa powder and stir until combined.

Put cream into saucepan over heat. As soon as comes to a simmer, remove from heat, squeeze excess water out of gelatin and add into cream. Stir until dissolves completely.

Pour cream over chocolate mixture and stir until combined.

Mix with electric hand blender.

Strain through sieve.

Cover with clingfilm and refrigerate 2 hrs (or can make up to 4 days in advance and store in fridge).

Remove from fridge, stir, smooth out any lumps then leave to sit at room temp. (or if made more than 2 hours in advance and the gelatin has set, warm in a pan over low heat until just melted then leave to come to room temperature).
 
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I want to make a tart in which the bottom layer is a fruit curd. On top of that I want to place a layer of pastry cream. How can I apply the pastry cream without disturbing the fruit curd?

Going further, how could I then apply a layer of chocolate ganache on top of the pastry cream without disturbing that?

Thanks.

Chill the curd and use a pastry bag to deposit the custard on the curd.
It won't be a problem.
 
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