Life at Toast Blog

Together we stay Toasty: A recipe for Gateau Basque


Gillian O.
Sr. UX Researcher

Gillian is a Senior UX Researcher on the TPX Insights team at Toast. She’s a self-taught gluten-free baker, and started a Gluten Free Kitchen, leading gluten-free cooking classes throughout the greater Boston area. Her daughter, Shannon, has mastered gluten free baking and can adapt almost any traditional baked good into an amazing gluten-free version. Gillian and Shannon love experimenting in the kitchen together to develop new gluten-free creations.




Chef’s notes:

You know that any dessert with its own museum must be special.  And there is, in fact, a Gateau Basque museum in Sare, France. Gateau Basque is traditionally a double layer of tart dough encasing a layer of either vanilla pastry cream or dark cherry jam. This recipe uses both pastry cream and jam, so you don’t have to choose! Our family first tasted Gateau Basque at our favorite bakery (and Toast customer) A&J King in Salem, MA. My daughter, Shannon, has become an excellent baker and developed this gluten free version so her brother who has Celiac can enjoy it too.


Cup4Cup flour works great for the gluten free version and for the gluten-full version use either All Purpose flour or whole wheat flour for a nutty flavor.  Don’t be put off by the length of the recipe - neither the pastry cream nor the dough are complicated.  And once you’ve made them it’s an easy assemble process and so worth the effort! 

Serves: 8 people

Prep Time: 45 mins + 2 hours chilling

Cook Time: 45 mins

Total time to eating: 5.5 hours

Special supplies:

Electric or Stand Mixer

Parchment Paper


Baker’s bite: Both the pastry cream and dough can be made the day before baking the cake and refrigerated overnight.



2 cups whole milk

6 large egg yolks

½ cup sugar

⅓ cup cornstarch, sifted 

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

3 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature


  1. In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, off heat, whisk together the yolks, sugar, and cornstarch. The mixture will be thick and should look airy and yellow.
  2. Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring occasionally to keep from scalding on the bottom or developing a film on the surface
  3. Once the milk is boiling, drizzle about a ¼ cup of the hot milk into the yolk mixture, whisking without stopping in order to slowly warm up the yolks. While still whisking, add the remainder of the milk in a steady stream.
  4. After all the milk is added and mixed in, put the saucepan over medium heat and continue to whisk vigorously and constantly while bringing the mixture to a boil, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  5. The mixture will start to thicken. Keep whisking for about another 30 to 60 seconds until the thickened mixture reaches a pudding-like consistency. Pull the pan from the heat.
  6. Whisk in the vanilla extract and let the mixture stand for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, whisk in the bits of butter until fully melted and incorporated. The pastry cream should be smooth and silky.
  7. Cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Scrape pastry cream into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic against the surface of the pastry cream to create an airtight seal.
  8. Refrigerate until cold.




9 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup sugar

1 egg

2 egg yolks

1 ⅔ cups Cup4Cup gluten free flour (or wheat flour for gluten-full)

½ cup almond flour (also called almond meal)

2 teaspoons baking powder

¾ teaspoons  salt

Zest of ½ to 1 lemon (optional)


  1. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until soft and fluffy. Add the egg and 2 egg yolks and mix until blended.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, almond flour, baking powder, salt, and if adding, the lemon zest.  With the mixer set on its lowest speed, slowly add the flour mixture and mix until fully incorporated. The dough will be soft.
  3. Transfer the dough to a clean surface. Divide into 2 parts, one slightly larger than the other.  Shape each piece of dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. (Pre-shaping the dough helps to keep it in an even shape when you roll it out later).
  4. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.



Note: If the dough feels too soft to work with as you’re rolling it out, or at any time during the process,  put it back in the fridge for 10-15 minutes to allow it to firm up to help keep its shape once removed from the pan.


⅓ cup cherry jam

1 egg, beaten with option to add 1 tablespoon milk (for egg wash)



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 9-inch cake pan with parchment paper and butter the paper and the sides of the pan.
  3. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a work surface and sprinkle it with a little flour. Working with the larger disk of dough, sprinkle it lightly with flour and cover with a second sheet of parchment. Roll it into an 11-inch round. Remove the top parchment. Holding onto the dough and bottom parchment, flip the dough onto the cake pan. Carefully peel off the parchment and gently press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Trim any excess dough that goes over the edge. If the dough cracks or your dough doesn't align quite right use your fingers to patch it with excess pieces, the dough is very forgiving.
  4. Spread a thin layer of cherry jam on the bottom of the crust. Then, gently dollop and spread out the pastry cream on top of the jam to fill the pan to just below to the top edge, and smooth the top. Refrigerate while you roll out the other section of dough.
  5. Roll out the smaller dough disk between the 2 sheets of floured parchment into a 10-inch round. Remove the top sheet of parchment from the dough and flip it onto the cream. Peel off the parchment.  Gently press together the edges of the top and bottom doughs to seal the edges. Remove any excess dough.
  6. Brush the top with egg wash. Using a fork, draw a cross hatched pattern by dragging the tines across the surface several times in one direction. Then draw the fork on a diagonal to the first set of lines.
  7. Bake in the middle of the oven for about 40 minutes or until the top crust is a deep golden brown. Depending on your oven you may need to bake longer. To prevent the edges of the gateau from burning, you can put tin foil around the edges after about 30 min.
  8. While still warm, run the tip of a small, sharp knife between the pan rim and the crust to loosen the tart. When entirely cooled, flip the gateau out, and then flip right side up onto a serving tray.




How to Enjoy

Best eaten for breakfast, a snack, or dessert. Unsure how long it lasts in the refrigerator, we tend to eat it all within 3 days.



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