Daily Planets Sunday 9/1/11 And a recipe! Plum Bakewell Tart

Byron Bay Beach...from the pub. Pic by me.

Byron Bay Beach...from the pub. Pic by me.

Anyone else got that urge to space out? Five Foot Nothing just came back from next door with an invite for a pantry mashup BBQ and I can’t even summon the mental strength to decide- chicken or steak? Yep, the Moon is in Pisces and for the rest of the weekend you have permission to do Pisces things.

Blame the Moon when you cry at a labrador pup in a toilet roll commercial. Blame the Moon when that open bottle of wine just disappears. Blame the Moon for not wanting to get out of bed tomorrow morning & loll around reading the Sunday papers. Blame the Moon when you can’t decide even the tiniest little decision point. Blame the Moon when you want to wallow in self pity and be a victim. Blame the Moon when you want to escape to Byron Bay or some other coastal paradise. Or, take advantage of the Moon to dream, create and inspire. Pisces is the most imaginative sign, so while emotions run high and logic runs low those creative juices can flow in some really interesting directions.

Personally I have this need to escape down a black line & will be hitting a pool at some point over the weekend to do some black line meditation ie swim a lot of laps!

In case you feel like escaping into some decadent vanilla scented shortcrust pastry and smooth almondy frangipane, why not try this Bakewell tart. I made it with plums today, although the recipe uses figs. I have also done it with apricots for a great result. the link to the actual recipe (from ABC Delicious Magazine) is here. My variations are below.

Ingredients:

1 packet of shortcrust pastry (I use the Careme vanilla bean shortcrust pastry)…or you can make your own if your are feeling more diva-ish than me.

100g unsalted butter, softened

110g caster sugar

1 egg lightly beaten

seeds scraped from a vanilla bean

1tbsp brandy (I used cointreau today & it was good)

1/2 cup raspberry jam

plums- about 8- halved with the seeds removed (derrrrrrr)

The Method Bit

I use a round tart tin with one of those loose bottoms, but a rectangle one (33cm x 12cm) would be ideal.

Preheat oven to 180C.

Do the usual thing with the pastry: roll it out to fit in the tin, making sure you have pastry overlapping the top so it doesn’t shrink. Stick it in the fridge to chill for 15mins or so & the blind bake it ie fill it with pastry weights or uncooked rice (remembering to pop some baking paper in teh centre first!) & bake for 10mins. Remove the rice/weights & bake for another 5 mins or until golden. Cool it while you do the rest.

Blitz the caster sugar & butter in a food processor until creamy. Add egg, almond meal, vanilla seeds & booze & mix together.

Spread the jam on the base of the pastry shell & top with the almond mix. Arrange the plums cut side up on top of the filling & press them down a little.

Bake for 20-25mins until the filling looks set & is golden. Let it cool a bit.

Serve it with a dollop of cream or ice cream or just on its’ own with coffee.

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