Monday, October 25, 2010

As autumn settles in, the bounty of fruit at the pazars shifts from mounds of fresh figs to piles of dark crimson plums.

The plums are plentiful so I bought 6 perfectly ripe plums the other day. I knew I wanted to make some kind of tart with them.

I’m sure you are bound to find plums at your local farmer’s markets back in the states as well. It’s the perfect time to make a plum cobbler, crisp, tarte tatin, jam or whatever your heart desires.

For my tart, I decided to use hazelnuts and Meyer Lemon juice and zest for extra pizzazz. I made a creamy filling based on these ingredients and topped it with the sliced plums. While baking, the plums sink into the filling a little bit.

It’s a great fall dessert that’s even better to share with friends. I shared mine with a group of ladies I’ve met here because we were celebrating one of the gal’s birthdays. I made one 8-inch tart for the group and a personal sized 4-inch tart for the birthday gal.

Happy Birthday Sema!

Afiyet Olsun!

Sweet Tart Dough
(Adapted from “Dolce Italiano” by Gina DePalma)
Makes one 10-inch tart shell

2 1/3    c.         All-purpose flour
1/3       c.         sugar
½         tsp.      salt
½         tsp.      baking powder
1          ea.        zest of a Meyer Lemon, finely grated
1 ½      sticks or 6 oz. unsalted butter, cold, cut into small cubes
1          lg.        egg
1          lg.        egg yolk
½         tsp.      vanilla extract
¼         c.         or 2 oz. heavy cream

1. Put the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and lemon zest into the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine.
2. Add the butter to the dry ingredients and pulse to process together until it is a sandy consistency.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolk, vanilla and heavy cream. Add these ingredients to the food processor and pulse a few times until the dough comes together.
4. Remove the dough from the food processor and work it together with your hands. Form the dough into a flat disk, wrap in plastic and chill until firm, about 1 to 2 hours.
5. Then, on a floured surface, roll out the tart dough into an 11-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Carefully, roll up the dough onto your rolling pin. Press the dough into the metal tart pan and up the sides. Then trim the top of the tart so it is flush with the top of the pan.
6. Place the tart shell in the freezer to chill while you make the filling.
7. Roll up the dough scraps. Flatten into a disk. Wrap with plastic wrap and freeze. Reserve to make another tart shell.

Hazelnut Creamy Filling
4-6       ea.        plums, sliced about 1/2-inch thick
1          T.         freshly squeezed Meyer Lemon juice
¼         c.         sugar
½         stick or 2 oz. unsalted butter, soft
¼         c.         powdered sugar
1          T.         honey
1          ea.        zest of a Meyer Lemon, finely grated
2          ea.        large egg yolks
½         tsp.      vanilla extract
¼         c. or 1.25 oz. hazelnuts, toasted and finely ground
Garnish            with powdered sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350 F/175 C.
2. Place the sliced plums in a bowl and cover with the sugar and lemon juice, tossing together to coat the plums evenly. Set aside while you make the filling.
3. In the bowl of a food processor, cream together the butter, powdered sugar, honey and zest.
4. Then, slowly add the egg yolks into the bowl, one at a time, pulsing together until combined.
5. Lastly, add the vanilla and hazelnuts, pulsing together until full combined.
6. Remove the tart shell from the freezer. Spread the creamy filling evenly on the bottom of the tart shell using an offset spatula or the back of a large spoon.
7. Arrange the sliced plums on top of the filling in a circular pattern. You may not need all the plums. Just use enough to make the tart look full.
8. Bake the tart for about 30 minutes, or until the top is an even golden brown. The plums will look soft and will sink into the filling a bit.
9. Allow the tart to cool on a wire rack before carefully removing the sides of the tart pan.

The tart can be served at room temperature or slightly warm. If you want to gild the lily, serve a dollop of whipped cream with the tart.

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Unknown said...

that looks so good!