Daring Bakers’ March Challenge- Orange Tian

I think this is the best-tasting thing I have ever made! At first when I read the recipe I thought it sounded a bit boring, but it’s not at all. You get to make the marmalade or jam and do up the orange segments. There’s room for plenty of creativity with the shape or using different jam flavors, types of citrus used, etc. Oh, and I finally learned how to easily stabilize whipped cream.

The taste was superior. It’s everything I want in a dessert- light and fluffy but also with a layer of crunch, citrus, and a tad sweet but not too sweet. It really was just prefect and normally I’m not even a fan of whipped cream so imagine how delighted my extended family will be when I make it again for them- they are whipped cream fanatics!

Of all the recipes I’ve made with the Daring Bakers, this one is going on the top of my Save and Make Often list!

The 2010 March Daring Baker’s challenge was hosted by Jennifer of Chocolate Shavings. She chose Orange Tian as the challenge for this month, a dessert based on a recipe from Alain Ducasse’s Cooking School in Paris.

I’m not quite sure how to pronounce this, but I have been saying TEE-ANN. But it might actually rhyme with “Ian”. Or maybe it’s TIE-ANN. . . Maybe somebody who reads this will clarify in the comments below. . .

I used a mix of blood oranges and tangerines. I also learned that tangerines are the same thing as mandarin oranges! I didn’t know this- I always thought tangerines were bigger for some reason. Maybe I got them confused with tangelos. Anyway, out of all the citrus I bought the weekend I put this together, the tangerines tasted the best. I used the blood oranges mostly for color but found them to be lacking in juice. They are stunningly beautiful to look at though and it made for a very pretty marmalade.

From this:

To this:

I also was excited to use this amazing zester my neighbor gave me. Talk about an awesome gift! I love this thing!

I could probably just stare at different types of oranges all day.

Make this now and make this often!

For the Pate Sablee:

Ingredients U.S. Imperial Metric Instructions for Ingredients

  • 2 medium-sized egg yolks at room temperature
  • granulated sugar 6 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon; 2.8 oz; 80 grams
  • vanilla extract ½ teaspoon
  • Unsalted butter ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons; 3.5 oz; 100 grams ice cold, cubed
  • Salt 1/3 teaspoon; 2 grams
  • All-purpose flour 1.5 cup + 2 tablespoons; 7 oz; 200 grams
  • baking powder 1 teaspoon ; 4 grams


  • Put the flour, baking powder, ice cold cubed butter and salt in a food processor fitted with a steel blade.
  • In a separate bowl, add the eggs yolks, vanilla extract and sugar and beat with a whisk until the mixture is pale. Pour the egg mixture in the food processor.
  • Process until the dough just comes together. If you find that the dough is still a little too crumbly to come together, add a couple drops of water and process again to form a homogenous ball of dough. Form into a disc, cover with plastic wrap and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit.
  • Roll out the dough onto a lightly floured surface until you obtain a ¼ inch thick circle.
  • Using your cookie cutter, cut out circles of dough and place on a parchment (or silicone) lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes or until the circles of dough are just golden.

For the Marmalade:

Ingredients U.S. Imperial Metric Instructions for Ingredients

  • Freshly pressed orange juice ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons; 3.5 oz; 100 grams
  • 1 large orange used to make orange slices
  • cold water to cook the orange slices
  • pectin 5 grams
  • granulated sugar: use the same weight as the weight of orange slices once they are cooked
  1. Finely slice the orange. Place the orange slices in a medium-sized pot filled with cold water. Simmer for about 10 minutes, discard the water, re-fill with cold water and blanch the oranges for another 10 minutes.
  2. Blanch the orange slices 3 times. This process removes the bitterness from the orange peel, so it is essential to use a new batch of cold water every time when you blanch the slices.
  3. Once blanched 3 times, drain the slices and let them cool.
  4. Once they are cool enough to handle, finely mince them (using a knife or a food processor).
  5. Weigh the slices and use the same amount of granulated sugar . If you don’t have a scale, you can place the slices in a cup measurer and use the same amount of sugar.
  6. In a pot over medium heat, add the minced orange slices, the sugar you just weighed, the orange juice and the pectin. Cook until the mixture reaches a jam consistency (10-15 minutes).
  7. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and put in the fridge.

For the Orange Segments:

For this step you will need 8 oranges.

Cut the oranges into segments over a shallow bowl and make sure to keep the juice. Add the segments to the bowl with the juice.

For the Caramel:

Ingredients U.S. Metric Imperial Instructions for Ingredients
granulated sugar 1 cup; 7 oz; 200 grams
orange juice 1.5 cups + 2 tablespoons; 14 oz; 400 grams

Place the sugar in a pan on medium heat and begin heating it.

Once the sugar starts to bubble and foam, slowly add the orange juice. As soon as the mixture starts boiling, remove from the heat and pour half of the mixture over the orange segments.

Reserve the other half of the caramel mixture in a small bowl — you will use this later to spoon over the finished dessert. When the dessert is assembled and setting in the freezer, heat the kept caramel sauce in a small saucepan over low heat until it thickens and just coats the back of a spoon (about 10 minutes). You can then spoon it over the orange tians.

[Tip: Be very careful when making the caramel — if you have never made caramel before, I would suggest making this step while you don’t have to worry about anything else. Bubbling sugar is extremely, extremely hot, so make sure you have a bowl of ice cold water in the kitchen in case anyone gets burnt!]

For the Whipped Cream:

Ingredients U.S. Metric Imperial Instructions for Ingredients

  • heavy whipping cream 1 cup; 7 oz; 200 grams
  • 3 tablespoons of hot water
  • 1 tsp Gelatine
  • 1 tablespoon of confectioner’s sugar
  • orange marmalade (see recipe above) 1 tablespoon

In a small bowl, add the gelatine and hot water, stirring well until the gelatine dissolves. Let the gelatine cool to room temperature while you make the whipped cream. Combine the cream in a chilled mixing bowl. Whip the cream using a hand mixer on low speed until the cream starts to thicken for about one minute. Add the confectioner sugar. Increase the speed to medium-high. Whip the cream until the beaters leave visible (but not lasting) trails in the cream, then add the cooled gelatine slowly while beating continuously. Continue whipping until the cream is light and fluffy and forms soft peaks. Transfer the whipped cream to a bowl and fold in the orange marmalade.

[Tip: Use an ice cold bowl to make the whipped cream in. You can do this by putting your mixing bowl, cream and beater in the fridge for 20 minutes prior to whipping the cream.]

Assembling the Dessert:

Make sure you have some room in your freezer. Ideally, you should be able to fit a small baking sheet or tray of desserts to set in the freezer.

Line a small tray or baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone sheet. Lay out 6 cookie cutters onto the parchment paper/silicone.

Drain the orange segments on a kitchen towel.

Have the marmalade, whipped cream and baked circles of dough ready to use.

Arrange the orange segments at the bottom of each cookie cutter. Make sure the segments all touch either and that there are no gaps. Make sure they fit snuggly and look pretty as they will end up being the top of the dessert. Arrange them as you would sliced apples when making an apple tart.

Once you have neatly arranged one layer of orange segments at the bottom of each cookie cutter, add a couple spoonfuls of whipped cream and gently spread it so that it fills the cookie cutter in an even layer. Leave about 1/4 inch at the top so there is room for dough circle.

Using a butter knife or small spoon, spread a small even layer of orange marmalade on each circle of dough.

Carefully place a circle of dough over each ring (the side of dough covered in marmalade should be the side touching the whipping cream). Gently press on the circle of dough to make sure the dessert is compact.

Place the desserts to set in the freezer to set for 10 minutes.

Using a small knife, gently go around the edges of the cookie cutter to make sure the dessert will be easy to unmold. Gently place your serving plate on top of a dessert (on top of the circle of dough) and turn the plate over. Gently remove the cookie cutter, add a spoonful of caramel sauce and serve immediately.


  1. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    Wow, great post! I’ll ask Isabelle later when she gets up how to pronounce Tian.

  2. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Gorgeous marmalade! And the plating looks so pretty with the flowers on top.

  3. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    Looks great! It’s hyacinth on top, right? Gorgeous.

    So glad you liked it so much, that’s awesome.

  4. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    Yes, hyacinth. I’m ready for Spring!!

  5. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Your tians are stunning there is nothing like blood oranges to add vibrant color and flavor.

  6. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much! I loved the blood oranges for color but the tangerines were tastiest!!

  7. Posted March 27, 2010 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Beautiful photos–especially that first one. I loved this challenge too! Your marmalade is gorgeous and I want that blue plate!

  8. Posted March 27, 2010 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Thanks! If you have a Target in your area that is where I found the blue plate.

  9. Posted March 27, 2010 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    How awesome is the Daring Kitchen that this is now a favorite of yours?? 🙂 It came out beautifully – the color from the blood oranges is stunning. Great job on the challenge!

  10. Posted March 27, 2010 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    I know, I can never say enough about how much I love the Daring Kitchen/Daring Bakers. Life-changing for me!

  11. Posted March 27, 2010 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    Your Tian is really beautiful and so are all of your photos of the process. I love the picture of all the oranges – so bright. I also love your blue plate. 🙂

  12. Posted March 27, 2010 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    My oh my, that colour of the blood oranges is so seductive!

  13. Posted March 27, 2010 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    Your tian looks wonderful! Great job on the challenge!

  14. Posted March 27, 2010 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    Wow! Your tian looks amazing. Love the colours and the flower detail on top.

  15. squeaky mouse
    Posted March 27, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    WOW, this looks AMAZING!!!!! beautiful colours!

  16. Y
    Posted March 27, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    I’m definitely no expert when it comes to pronouncing French words, but I’ve been calling it Tee-ahn. Love that mix of blood oranges and tangerines – such beautiful colours (and flavours!).

  17. Amanda Lee
    Posted March 27, 2010 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    YUMMY!!! I don’t know how you do it : )

  18. Posted March 27, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    You can do it too! Let me know if you want to learn- we can make one together. Actually, we better make two . . .

  19. Posted March 27, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    Hmm, I suppose the word is French, so maybe the pronounciation is something like “Tee-Ang”? Maybe some French native speaker can clarify this… Anyway, good job on the challenge.

  20. Posted March 27, 2010 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

    Amazingly vibrant colors! Those photos are beautiful. Great job!

  21. Posted March 27, 2010 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    Love your photos and your dessert!

  22. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Gorgeous, just gorgeous. Your photos make me want to jump through the screen and take a bite.

  23. Posted March 27, 2010 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    I was looking for yours- saw you were making marmalade yesterday!

  24. Posted March 27, 2010 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Great job! I love the combination of the blood oranges and the tangerines! It looks absolutely lovely!

  25. Posted March 28, 2010 at 5:31 am | Permalink

    I just love the colours of your Tian!! Great Job!

  26. Posted March 28, 2010 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Gorgeous dessert and gorgeous photography to show it off. 🙂

  27. Posted March 28, 2010 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful! The colors of the blood oranges are gorgeous! Glad you enjoyed the dessert.

  28. Posted March 29, 2010 at 3:51 am | Permalink

    Your Tian looks lovely. I’ve never seen blood oranges as we don’t get them here.
    I’ve been saying “tee-ahn”, but haven’t a clue! “)

  29. Posted March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Your pictures are gorgeous! You made the blood oranges look especially nice. I’m not sure how to pronounce it either but you did a great job.

  30. Posted April 1, 2010 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Well now I wish I had made it this month. Maybe I’ll make it later anyway when I’m more in the mood.

  31. Posted April 9, 2010 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Beautiful!! What a lovely presentation.