SWEET & SOOTHING

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SEPTEMBER 28, 2021

Italian Plum Tart

with Almond Cream

Prep Time:

20 mins

Cooking Time:

30 mins

Servings:

8

This year, feature the best of your garden's plums in this beautiful tart with a delicately sweet homemade shortcrust pastry. Elegant or cozy, this treat is so easy and oh, so satisfying.

Italian Plum Tart

with Almond Cream

Show off your Autumn plum harvest with this beautiful tart of roasted plums set on an almond cream filling sprinkled with roasted pistachios and a dollop of cream. Bursting flavour and colour but not so sweet as to overpower the fruit.

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I'm Kate : )

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Thanks for visiting my Swell Kitchen! My lifelong love affair with cooking is shared here, where I will take you to the water's edge as I cook from my seaside home. Stay awhile and enjoy the view : )

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Plums, the Fall Harvest Rock Stars

At first glance, I think many people may not give plums a second thought. To some not into the soft inside texture, they might stay with a firmer fruit to enjoy. However, I assure you, they are well worth it. Plums are plentiful in September, when the Fall apple harvest comes in. If you get them in season, they are cheap as all heck and their delicate flavour just intensifies when roasted in pies, cakes and tarts. Available in a wide variety of colours, you can make this tart with any kind of plum you can find.

Sweet Shortcrust Pastry, the Easiest of Pastries

I remember watching my Mother make pie crust when I was little. Ensuring the butter was the size of a pea, she mastered the delicate skill of mixing in just enough water, but not too much. Mixing the ingredients just right, but not overworking it. All I could think at the time was "Jinkies! That looks finicky!" A shortcrust pastry has no steps you can mess up on. It comes together easily in a food processor and produces a lovely flakey, velvety smooth pastry crust almost like a shortbread with it's melt in your mouth satisfaction. If you've ever been fearful of messing up a pie crust, give this shortcrust recipe a try.

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Italian Plum Tart

with Almond Cream

This year, feature the best of your garden's plums in this beautiful tart with a delicately sweet homemade shortcrust pastry. Elegant or cozy, this treat is so easy and oh, so satisfying.

INGREDIENTS:


SWEET SHORT CRUST PASTRY


  • 1 1/2 cups (225g) plain flour

  • 1/2 cup (80g) icing sugar which includes 2 tbsp for dusting

  • 125g chilled butter, chopped

  • 2 egg yolks


ALMOND PASTRY CREAM


  • 100g butter, softened

  • 1/2 cup (110g) caster sugar

  • 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk

  • 1 to 2 tbsp ice water

  • 1 cup (120g) find ground almond meal

  • 1/4 cup (35g) plain flour

  • Whipping cream

  • Chopped pistachios


Plus plums to top the tart with. I haven't specified how many because that depends on which variety you choose. For larger plums you will require less than you would if you used these darling little Italian plums. If using them, I used 10.

PREPARATION PLAN


PASTRY


Step 1


Making the pastry is the first task. Add the flour, sugar and butter to a food processor and pulse it just until the butter is the size of small crumbs. Then add the egg and just enough water to get the dough to come together, usually about  to 2 tablespoons. Be careful not to overprocess the dough. Instead, once you've added the water, turn the dough out onto the counter and press it together into a ball with your hands. On a lightly floured surface, form a disc about 3 cm/1 inch thick and then wrap tightly and place in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes. While my dough was chilling, I took that time to find the tart pan I wanted to use, and to butter it lightly. I also selected my fruit and sliced it into thin strips.


Step 2


Preheat oven to 350◦F. After lightly greasing a 30 cm/12 inch fluted tart tin with removable base, line the base with a rectangle of parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to about 3 mm/1/4 inch and line the tart pan, making sure to press the dough neatly into the corners and into the flutes of the pan. Roll a rolling pin off the top to neatly trim the pastry edge. Prick the base with a fork every which way which will vent steam as the pastry bakes. Set the lined tart pan in the fridge for about 15 mins or so to chill.


Step 3


Line pastry with baking paper or tin foil and fill with pastry weights, beans or whatever you have that will add some weight to the shell. Rice is always on hand, so try that. You can save it after you use it as it still cooks up without any damage. Bake for 10 mins, then remove the foil and whatever you used to weight it down. Bake for another 10 mins or until lightly golden brown. Take it out and cool it on the counter.


FILLING


Step 4


Using a stand mixer, a handheld mixer or even just a wooden spoon in a bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until they are pale and oh so creamy. Add the egg and mix well. Then add the almond meal and flour and blend it thoroughly. Take a small palette knife if you have one, but a small spatula will do, and spread the mixture evenly over the base of the cooled pastry tart shell.


Step 5


Arrange your plum slices in any pattern that you like, or no pattern at all if that's your fancy. Throw it in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the filling is set and the plums look nicely roasted. Let cool.


Step 6


Pop the tart out of the shell by pressing up from the bottom. Place it on a pretty serving plate and dust with icing sugar.  Whip up some whipping cream and toss in some chopped pistachios... add a dollop to each plate you serve and enjoy!

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If you're anything like me...

... and you like food photography as much as the recipe, here is the entire collection of the shoot for this dish, right here for you. Better yet, pin it! Enjoy!

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