I bought a punnet of fresh apricots the other day in a moment of weakness; ever since, they have been staring at me on the kitchen table while turning from rock hard to a rather tired state.
It occurred to me a tart was the way to redeem myself so here is how I went about it.
The Sweet Pastry.
80g of unsalted butter (cold from the fridge)
140g of plain flour
25g of icing sugar
1 egg yolk
a pinch of salt
enough chilled water to form a dough.
Rub the butter into the flour, salt and sugar until it forms a breadcrumb consistency, add the egg yolk and a little chilled water and bring together to form a dough. Adding too much water results in a rather tough pastry so add only a little at a time until enough is added to form a cohesive dough. Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes then roll out and line a 25centimeter loose bottom tart tin. Pop the tart tin back in the fridge while the oven heats up to 200 degrees.
I bake my pastry tarts blind which involves placing a piece of baking parchment paper on top of the pastry and pouring in some baking beans, these can be any pulse kept just for this job. Bake the tart case for 20 minutes taking the paper and baking beans away after 15 minutes.
Meanwhile make the frangipan.
200g of room temperature unsalted butter
200g ground almonds
200g of icing sugar
2 tablespoons of SR flour
1 dessertspoon of Almond liqueur,(optional)
pinch of salt.
Cream the butter and sugar, beat in the eggs and almond liqueur is using, add the flour, ground almonds, icing sugar and salt.
Take 8 rather tired looking apricots, slice them in half and remove the stone. cut the two halves into 4 so that each apricot gives you 8 slim segments.
Buying a punnet of fruit that hasn't been grown locally really isn't something I do and this tart would work very well with locally grown plums, apples or pears. If using plums, place the cut side up rather than bury the pieces in the frangipan since plums produce a lot of juice whilst cooking and make the whole things soggy, keeping the cut side upright allows for some of the excess moisture to burn off in the oven.