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french tart with plums and apricots
(recipe, Sarah Gilbert)
I owe much of my dessert sensibility to Patricia Wells, whose plainly-titled cookbook Bistro Cooking has long been one of my go-to volumes for seasonal, inconvenient cooking. And so when I realized I had a few farmer's market apricots, a few gleaned plums, and a need for a dessert to take to a party, I looked there.
Of course, there were no tarts with apricots and plums. But there were other things. A custard, I thought, and a tart shell. Before long I had this dessert put together; a loose amalgam of several French bistro-style tarts, and thoroughly delicious.
- ½ recipe pie crust
- 2 ripe apricots (or peaches, or nectarines)
- 2 ripe purple plums
- 2 large eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- ½ cup cream (or creme fraiche)
- ½ cup honey (divided)
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- ½ tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Roll out your pie crust and place it in an 8-inch tart pan, pressing it securely up the sides.
- Prick pie crust and bake about 15 minutes, until it begins to get golden brown. Remove and cool.
- Meanwhile, cut apricots and plums into neat wedges, trying to preserve the skin (for looks mostly). These can be any size you like; mine were about ½ inch at the widest part. Place fruit wedges in a bowl with ¼ cup of the honey and the nutmeg. Mix and let macerate.
- Once your pie crust is mostly cool, whisk together eggs, egg yolk, cream, the other ¼ cup honey, and vanilla; pour into crust. Here you may want to place your tart pan on a cookie sheet in the even your custard leaks.
- Arrange macerated fruit evenly in your custard; if you're fancy, you could make a pattern. I wasn't fancy.
- Put back in the oven and bake another 15-20 minutes, until custard is mostly set. Remove and let cool to room temperature before serving.