a rustic plum tart
When it's plum season I normally make a plum cake to bring into work. Last year I decided to make a plum tart instead. The images were shot for my September Delicious Bites column on decor8 but the column was cancelled before I had time to post the recipe.
My workmates loved the tart so I put the images in a folder waiting for plum season to arrive here in Sydney. I was invited to a BBQ last weekend and as plums have recently appeared in the shops I decided it was time to remake the tart.
The pastry recipe is my own but the filling comes from Belinda Jeffrey's Plum Crostata recipe from Mix and Bake. Belinda made her crostata on a pizza tray but I decided to make mine in a pie tin.
As a pie tin is much smaller than a pizza tray but much deeper, you'll need to layer the fruit, which means the cooking time is close to double the 40 minutes mentioned in the original recipe. It's pretty easy to put together as it's really only half a pie and you don't have to fiddle around making a lid. If making pastry gives you the heebie jeebies, you could always buy some good quality shortcrust pastry and use that instead.
Here's the recipe for you -
A Rustic Plum Tart (filling adapted from Belinda Jeffery’s Plum Crostata recipe in ‘Mix & Bake’)
Hazelnut shortcrust pastry
1⅓ cup plain flour
¼ cup hazelnut meal
¼ cup icing sugar
110g/4 oz unsalted butter, coarsely chopped
1 egg yolk mixed with 2 tablespoons of iced water
Place flour, hazelnut meal, icing sugar and butter in the bowl of a food processor and blitz until it resembles breadcrumbs. With the processor still running, gradually pour in enough of the egg mixture until the pastry starts to form a ball. Stop the processor, tip out the dough and form it into a disc. Wrap in plastic and pop in the fridge to rest for 40 minutes.
1 kg/2 lbs just ripe plums
¼ cup caster sugar
2 x 20 ml tbs roasted hazelnuts, finely chopped
¼ cup caster sugar
2 x 20 tbs plain flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
raw caster sugar for sprinkling
whipped or double cream
Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F.
Halve the plums, remove the seeds and thinly slice. Place the sliced plums with ¼ cup sugar in a large bowl. Set to one side.
In a small bowl mix together the hazelnuts, sugar, flour and cinnamon.
Grease a 9 inch pie plate. Unwrap the pastry and roll out on a lightly floured bench to form a thin circle a few inches larger than the pie tin. Place the circle in the pie tin being careful not to trim the overhang as that will form the lid.
Spread half the hazelnut mixture over the base of the pie plate. Arrange half the plum slices, overlapping in concentric circles and liberally sprinkle with remaining hazelnut mixture. Arrange the remaining plums in a second layer and reserve any leftover juice.
Fold the border gently over the plums and brush the edge of the pastry with milk. Sprinkle the raw sugar over the plums and a little on the pastry. Place the plum tart on a baking tray to catch any drips while it’s baking.
Place the tray in the oven and bake the tart for about 1 hour or until the plums have collapsed a little and the pastry turns golden brown. If the plums are still uncooked when tested, cover the edges of the pastry with foil and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes.
Place the leftover plum juice in a saucepan and cook over a medium heat until it forms a syrup. Gently glaze the plums with the mixture. The pie can be served warm or at room temperature. The flour really helps the filling to set so you should be able to cut a clean slice once the pie cools.
Serve with whipped cream or double cream.
I bought a bucket of plums from the fruit shop to make the tart but unbeknownst to me, the top layer was close to ripe but the rest were a little unripe. When I served the pie, I found that unripe plums sure make for a zingy filling.
Like most pies, it tastes even better served with a dollop of cream.
For all my Northern Hemisphere readers, I hope you get the chance to try this recipe when it's your plum season.
See you all again soon,