Pate Sucree

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Pate Sucree

A traditional pate sucree is a basic sweet dough. But Sebastien is relentless in his pursuit of more flavor and a more refined technique, so he uses powdered sugar rather than granulated or superfine, because it blends into the butter better. He adds most of the sugar to the butter, which has been whipped to peaks, then adds the rest of the sugar with the flour; he uses not only wheat flour but also almond flour, for its rich flavor. For even more flavor, he adds the seeds of a vanilla bean and, for richness and its binding properties, some egg. The result is a wonderful sweet, delicate dough, which he likes to use with less-sweet fillings as in the Lemon Meringue Tarts. He uses pate brisee (separate recipe) with most very sweet fillings.


  • 375 grams all-purpose flour 2⅔ cups
  • 46 grams powdered sugar ¼ cup + 2½ tablespoons
  • 94 grams powdered sugar ¾ cup + 1 tablespoon
  • 47 grams almond flour see Note below
  • 225 grams unsalted butter 8 ounces
  • ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 56 grams eggs 3½ tablespoons


  • Place the all-purpose flour in a medium bowl. Sift the 46 grams powdered sugar and the almond flour into the bowl; break up any lumps of almond flour remaining in the sieve, add them to the bowl. and whisk to combine.
  • Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and cream on medium-low speed, warming the bowl as needed (see Pommade note below), until the butter is the consistency of mayonnaise and holds a peak when the paddle is lifted.
  • Sift in the remaining 94 grams powdered sugar and pulse to begin incorporating the sugar, then increase the speed to medium-low and mix for about 1 minute, until the mixture is fluffy.
  • Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean, add them to the butter mixture, and mix on low speed for about 30 seconds to distribute the seeds evenly.
  • Add the dry ingredients in 2 additions, mixing for 15 to 30 seconds after each, or until just combined.
  • Scrape the bottom of the bowl to incorporate any dry ingredients that have settled there. Add the eggs and mix on low speed until just combined, 15 to 30 seconds.
  • Transfer the dough to the work surface. Use the heel of your hand to smear the dough and work it together (see fraiser explanation on page 128 Bouchon Bakery).
  • Divide the dough in half and form each half into a 4-by-6-inch-retangle, about ¾ inch thick.
  • Wrap each piece in a double layer of plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours, but preferably overnight.


The dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.

NOTE ON NUT FLOURS: Almond and hazelnut flours, or meals, add texture and delicious flavor to pastries, but the nut oils can cause these flours to clump. So it's important to sift them before using, and then to break up any clumps remaining in the sieve and add them to the bowl.

POMMADE: Before we cream butter for some cookie doughs or some tart doughs, we want the butter to be so soft and creamy that it forms soft peaks and has a consistency like mayonnaise. Typically we warm the mixer bowl with the butter in it, by holding the bowl over a burner or using a blowtorch against the outside of the bowl, to encourage the softening.

Follow the "Rolling Out Tart Dough" instructions (page 130) and "To Blind-Bake Tart Shells" (page 131).

This recipe is from Bouchon Bakery page 129.

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