We're asking writers, chefs, and other people who we admire for the recipe they make when they're not feeling their best (interpret that as you will). This week, we asked Dorie Greenspan, author, most recently, of Dorie's Cookies. (Catch Julia Turshen's feel-better meal here.)
I’ve got such a long list of things I make when I’m feeling yucky—does this mean that I’m not as cheerful as I thought I was? Oh no!
For years, the yucks would send me to the stove to make rice (long grain, cooked in broth, sometimes with a few cardamom pods tossed in), which I’d eat at every temperature and sometimes with raisins and sunflower seeds.
Then there were the roast chicken years. Somehow, knowing that I could roast a chicken made me feel really good—it was more about the romantic idea of chicken-comfort than the chicken itself, although I did love making something I could pick at all week.
These days, I make a tart, the perfect life-will-be-better project. With a tart, the process is as rewarding as the dessert is satisfying. And, since I work at home, I can make the tart in stages—better for the tart, better for me—and stretch out the pleasure.
Also, given the choice before between tart and chicken, I’ll always take tart. (Why did it take me so long to admit this?)
Cherry Crumb Tart
For the streusel:
- 1/3 cup (67 grams) sugar
- Grated zest of 1 orange (optional)
- 3/4 cup (102 grams) all-purpose flour
- Up to 1/4 teaspoons teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
- 3/4 stick (6 tablespoons; 3 ounces; 85 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the filling:
- 3/4 stick (6 tablespoons; 3 ounces; 85 grams) cold unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2/3 cup (132 grams) sugar
- 3/4 cup (75 grams) almond or hazelnut flour
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon kirsch or 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 partially baked 9 to 9 1/2-inch tart crust made with Sweet Tart Dough
- 1 pound (454 grams) cherries, pitted
- Confectioners' sugar, for dusting (optional)
- Crème fraîche, for serving (optional)
Sweet Tart Dough
- 1 1/2 cups (204 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (60 grams) confectioners' sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 9 tablespoons (4 1/2 ounces; 128 grams) very cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 large egg yolk
What's your therapeutic cooking or baking project of choice? Tell us in the comments.