Thursday, July 24, 2008

Baked Fruit Tart

For years now I have been making this kick ass lemon curd tart from the City Cuisine cookbook by Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken. It is a wonderful resource filled with great recipes, tips and techniques, I've seen it recently at the Strand for half off.

Anyway, last night I had some left over dough from a gooseberry tart I had made and so I did it with fresh sour cherries. Wow it was so good and I am exploring making fruit tarts without a top crust or crumble. The fruit roasts instead of steaming and the sugar crystallizes on top.

Pit and rinse 4 cups of sour cherries and put aside.

In a food processor finely chop 3/4 c Pecans (Walnut or Hazelnuts would work just as well).

In a large bowl incorporate the chopped nuts, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 cup butter, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, 1 t salt, and mix with a wooden spoon.

Add 2 3/4 cups unbleached all purpose flour. Knead until it forms a smooth ball, cover and refrigerate for about 4 hours.

When the dough is chilled use either individual tart pans (about 4) or one 11" tart pan and using your hands spread the dough thickly into the pan. You can roll it but it's fragile and fussy and using your hands is so much easier, quicker and more fun. Put back in the fridge and cool for another 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Toss the cherries with 1 1/2 cups of sugar (depending on how sour you like it use less sugar 1 cup gives you a tart, tart), 1 T of kirsch, and 2 T of instant tapioca (www.edwardsandsons.com has an organic version).

Remove the tart crust and fill with the cherry mixture. Bake at 400 for 5 minutes, reduce the heat to 350 and continue to cook another 12-15 minutes or until the crust is brown and the filling is bubbling and sugar has started to caramelize.

Let cool before removing the rim.
Dust with icing sugar and serve with generous amounts of unsweetened whipped cream.

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