Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry TartA couple of times a year a four of us meet up at one of London’s food markets to browse the stalls, refreshments in hand, to decide on a menu for that evening, depending on what is available.

Broadway Market, East London

Broadway Market, East London

Broadway Market, East London

Broadway Market, East London

Bread cubes, sometimes dipped in olive oil, are nibbled, cheese is greedily sampled, vegetables are gently prodded, seafood is admired and appraised, meat is pondered and sometimes a little matchmaking is attempted. But that is another story!

Over more refreshments, the menu is finalised, purchases are made, wine is bought and we repair to one of our homes, usually M & B’s, to spend the rest of the afternoon prepping and cooking to produce a tasting menu of 6 – 8 dishes. One of my favourites is a seared scallop on small disc of crispy black pudding with a mustard and creme fraiche sauce. I think that N has made this every time now – it’s a regular on our “menu”.  We all have some idea of what we would like to cook before we get to the market and I usually bring something pre-made with me. Once I made pasta dough and brought my pasta roller because I wanted to make a ravioli – medley of mushroom as it turned out and once I made a mustard and rhubarb relish which I wanted to serve with mackerel but there were none to be had in the market that day. Sometimes we invite friends who arrive in the evening together with our family members and it is always a warm, convivial day finishing late into the night.

We never make a pudding as we would all much rather have a cheese course but once (3 years ago according to my notes), I made this Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart to have just incase anyone felt like a sliver of something sweet and I have been making it ever since.

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

It takes minutes to blitz the pastry base and slice the plums and then it spends 3/4′s of an hour or so in the oven, with an irresistible smell wafting out of the kitchen for the duration.

Blitz until mixture resembles damp sand

Blitz until mixture resembles damp sand

Tip into baking tin

Tip into baking tin

Pat very gently to form an even layer

Pat very gently and lightly to form an even layer

Plum carnage

Plum carnage…

Sliced plums laid on the base

Sliced plums laid on the base

Scattering of blueberries

Scattering of blueberries

Cooling on a rack

Cooling on a rack

For this tart to work, it is desirable to have a contrast of sweet biscuit-like pastry base and the sour plums – Victoria plums (the oval purplish ones) won’t work. Because the pastry base has a higher sugar content, it will colour to a gorgeous golden brown. I am battling with a really horrible oven – though not for much longer – which scorches everything so the fruit does look a little singed but this contrasts beautifully with the tart jammy interior of the fruit and the crumbly, nutty biscuit like base.  In the past I have added a few drops of almond extract to the base to boost the flavour and I have also added cinnamon to it. Once I didn’t have enough ground almonds and added flaked ones to bolster up the quantity. All were successful additions. There are lots of plums around at the moment so this is the perfect time to try this easy recipe.

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

  • Servings: 8 slices
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

adapted slightly from the wonderful blog, Orangette by Molly Wizenberg

INGREDIENTS

  • 150g flour
  • 150g golden caster sugar
  • 85g ground almonds
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg, lightly whisked
  • 45g cool butter, cubed
  • 4-6 juicy slightly tart, juicy plums
  • 100g of blueberries (a handful really)

You will also need a 22 cm loose bottomed  or springform tin, the bottom lined with a parchment circle.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 190C/170C fan/375F
  2. Using a food processor; Place the flour, sugar, ground almonds, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to blend. Pour in the egg and butter cubes and process until it looks like damp sand. It takes about one minute!
  3. If you are making it by hand, place the  flour, sugar, ground almonds, baking powder and salt in a bowl and mix well to combine. Add the egg and butter and using a pastry blender, two knives or a fork, cut the mixture together until it starts to clump and there is no flour showing.
  4. Tip the mixture into the baking tin and gently pat down to even out into one layer – you mustn’t compact it and nor should you pat it up the sides. it should just be one even layer.
  5. De-stone 4 of the plums by cutting in half and twisting. Depending on the size of the plums, slice each half into 3 or 4 slices and lay in two circles on top of the pastry. Leave a little margin of pastry between the edge of the tin and the fruit.  If you need more fruit then use the additional plums.  Scatter over the blueberries.
  6. Bake for 50-55 minutes, checking after 40 minutes.
  7. The tart is ready when the pastry has puffed up a little around the fruit and has taken on a golden hue with a deeper colour to the edges.
  8. Cool in the tin, on a rack for 10 minutes and then remove the sides to finish cooling.
  9. Can be served warm or cold with a spoonful of creme fraiche or a scoop of ice-cream.

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

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13 thoughts on “Rustic Plum and Blueberry Tart

    • We have such fun and we cook such wonderful food but I couldn’t have done this when my son was little. The markets are just so busy that when I did take him on my own, I had to watch him like a hawk.

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    • Hello Fae…the base is supposed to puff up slightly around the fruit and the baking powder helps this process and the salt helps to activate it with the egg. This is why it is essential not to pack the base and compact it down but to pat it gently into place. It usually puffs up much more that it did this time – a new pot of baking powder is on my shopping list…

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  1. This looks lovely. If I can find plums at this time of year (they’re more of a summer fruit in the U.S.), I hope to attempt this. Plums are rather under-appreciated here, but this recipe might cause a revival.

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    • Thank you Adrianne – we seem to love plums here in the UK – there are so many recipes – sweet, savoury, jams, chutneys…I think that sometimes plums can be too sour or a little mealy and this can put people off. If there are any nectarines still hanging about, try the recipe with them – the nectarines would have to be fairly ripe though…though do try it with plums if you can.

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    • Shanna, I do hope you will let me know what you think if you make it. The almonds give the base a lovely flavour and texture which you can accentuate with a drop of almond extract (not too much as it is really strong) if you like :) thank you so much for stopping by x

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      • Hi, Selma-
        I am looking forward to making this during the autumn/winter season. I would like to use fresh plums – though I may need to use frozen blueberries (they are hard to find in the winter)! Do you think this would work? I am on the lookout for a tart pan (while I shop for your suggested props!) this weekend. I love your blog and will continue to visit with joy! Be well. Shanna

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I would so love to hear from you - please do leave a comment! (Your email address will not be visible.) Selma

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