Serious Eats: Recipes
Baking with Dorie: Gourmandise
It's not easy to translate gourmandise from the French. Strictly speaking, I guess it would be a delicacy or a treat, but the word, when applied to food, can also mean greedy. It's a great word—I mean, how many of us haven't been greedy for the treats we love—and it's a great name for this dessert from Pierre Herme.
This gorgeous dessert has three parts; from the bottom up they are: rich coconut-tapioca; spears of fresh pineapple mixed with lime zest and sweet orange marmalade; and thin, thin slices of oven-dried pineapple.
When I wrote the description of this dessert for the first book that I did with Pierre (Desserts by Pierre Herme), I said that it "... falls into that rarely explored realm between refreshing and comforting. The coconut—its consistency like that of a bisque, its floating pearls just right for popping against the roof of your mouth—is mild, milky, soupy and soothing, while the pineapple, glistening with bittersweet marmalade and spiked with lime zest, is all sparkle and zip." More than a decade later, it still seems right to me. More important, the dessert is still exciting.
Each part of the dessert can be made ahead and, really, each part could be served separately, but that wouldn't be very gourmandise-ish, would it?
About the author: Dorie Greenspan is the author of several books on dessert, most recently Baking: From My Home to Yours. Dorie can also be found at DorieGreenspan.com and on the Bon Appétit website, where she is a special correspondent.