Plum Crostata

March 20th, 2008 / American Brasserie, Recipes

Under the name of tarte aux quetsches, plum tart is a favorite dessert all over Alsace, especially in the fall when the purply-blue quetsch (pronounced kwetch) plums come into season. A heavenly eau-de-vie is also made from the ripe fruits, which we know as Italian prune plums. This crostata is easier to make than any tart, since no custard is required: just sound fruit and good jam. The recipe can be doubled; it can also be made in any shape you like, and with any soft fruits: peaches and berries are especially good.

Ingredients
Makes 1 14” tart or 2 smaller ones 

For the dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
Finely chopped zest of 1 lemon
2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk, whisked together

For the filling:
2 tablespoons raspberry jam
6 to 8 ripe but firm plums, pitted and cut in wedges
1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons whole milk
1 tablespoon coarse, turbinado, or “raw” sugar

Instructions

1. Make the dough: In the bowl of a mixer, blend the flour, sugar, and lemon zest at low speed. Add the butter and continue blending at low speed until the mixture is coarse and sandy-looking. Add the egg mixture and blend just until the mixture comes together. Form into a ball, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
3. On a floured surface, roll the dough out to a rough circle, about 14 inches in diameter. Transfer it to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. All around the edge of the crust, fold in the outer half-inch to form a rough, “rustic” edge to the tart.
4. Using a rubber spatula, gently spread the jam over the bottom of the tart. Then arrange the plum wedges in concentric circles over the jam, skin side up. Dot with the raspberries and drizzle the honey over.
5. With a pastry brush, brush the tart edge with milk. Sprinkle it with coarse sugar.
6. Bake until fruit is tender and the underside of the tart is browned, about 25-30 minutes.

Belgian white beer, with its orangey flavors, would drink well with this bright fruity dessert. Match with an exotic Black Muscat from California or Australia.

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