Sweet or savory, I love tarts! I love the making and the eating. It’s probably one of the things I make most often when I want to wing it with whatever’s in the kitchen. I was delighted to try a new dessert tart, David Lebovitz’s Apricot Crumble Tart, the selection from My Paris Kitchen for this week’s Cook the Book Fridays.
Starting with the crust, this one hooked me in. I’m a huge fan of Dorie Greenspan’s Sweet Tart Crust, but this one was even better. It came together almost instantly in the stand mixer, then pressed easily into the pan. The high sides of a springform pan provides space for lots of sweet fruit filling.
This tart can also be done in stages. I made and prebaked the crust and prepped the cinnamon crumble topping one day, then prepared the filling and baked it the next.
I’m not sure that apricots are grown locally in New England. I haven’t seen them at the farmer’s market. At the largest produce market around, the apricots were from Washington State. They were also HUGE, almost the same size as a peach or nectarine. I was expecting to buy 15-20 apricots, but just 8 giant apricots weighed in at slightly over two pounds. Rather than quarter the fruit, I cut them in eighths which seemed to approximate the size that quarters of a normal-sized apricot would be.
The fruit filling generously filled the crust. Then the crumble was sprinkled on top before baking.
The visual cue for the tart’s doneness was nicely browned crumbs on top. That took a long time to happen. After the initial 50 minutes, the crumble seemed uncooked and the fruit was still firm. I ended up baking the tart for an additional 50 minutes, and even turned up the oven heat for the last half hour. I recall having a similar issue when we made David’s quiche. I recently calibrated my oven, so it wasn’t that. Hopefully next time I make one of his tarts, I’ll remember to start at 375F instead of 350F to reduce the baking time.
As a whole, this tart was good, but I’m not likely to seek out apricots just to make it again. I will definitely use the crust again, being sure to grease the pan a little more than I did because I experienced some stubbornness when serving slices. The crumble might reappear as well. I’m curious how this would be with the more plentiful peaches or nectarines. That might be worth a try.
A suggested accompaniment to the tart is Apricot Kernel Ice Cream made from the pits of the apricots. I didn’t try that this time around because I didn’t have enough of them. A full recipe calls for 50 apricot kernels. Had I used 15-20 apricots, I would have made a half-batch but I wasn’t going to get very far with just 8. I’ll save that one for another day.
The tart recipe can be found on-line here at Leite’s Culinaria or on page 309 in David Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen. To read about the other Cook the Book Fridays bloggers’ tarts, check out their links here. Happy Friday All!
Fruit tarts are one of my favorite desserts, so I was excited about making the Sable Breton Galette with Berries this week for French Fridays with Dorie. This tart is homemade summer simplicity at its best. A cookie crust is topped with lemon curd and fresh berries. That’s it!
The crust is made from a soft cookie dough. It’s similar to shortbread, but the egg and baking powder made it a little lighter, perfect for eating with a fork. The cookie base is pre-baked so, if you plan ahead, you can assemble this impressive dessert on a moment’s notice. The base is pressed into a flat disk rather than forming edges which made for a fun presentation.
The lemon curd can be homemade or store-bought. I wanted to try making it, but didn’t want lots extra, so I made a half batch which was the perfect amount for topping the tart. You whisk together eggs, sugar, lemon juice and a smidge of corn syrup then melt butter into it, whisking as you go. I was a little nervous that it wouldn’t come out thick or smooth, but after just 3 minutes, I had created a jar of lemony delight. I’ll be making this again.
For berries, you can use whatever you like. Local strawberries have finally arrived in these parts, so I topped my tart with strawberries and blueberries. I loved the color contrast.
When I was previewing this week’s Dorie recipe at home, Howard wasn’t wild about the idea of lemon curd, so I brought this to work to share. I brought the tart into a meeting, and I thought we’d serve it and eat while we met. I admire the self-control of the person this was in front of. The tart sat in the center of the table for over an hour before someone asked when we would be eating it. We cut it into 12 slices, and everyone enjoyed it.
This is definitely one of my favorite recipes in the book so far. I know this will make several appearances on our table this summer. For Howard, I will try spreading a matching berry jam on the cookie instead of lemon curd. I think that will be a delicious variation.