Summer Plum Tart
August 2, 2011 Leave a comment
Some of my sweetest childhood memories at my grandmother’s old house involve consuming endless amounts of dark purple plums. The satisfying tearing of the firm, dusky skin to reveal vibrant, vermilion flesh is a unique fruit-eating experience. My fingers and palms would be stained red from the juices, yet still I reached out for another perfect little plum in the fruit basket. Every summer, this would be a little tradition, until the house became too much for my grandmother to maintain and it was sold to new owners.
As much as I would love to have the plum tree again, my parents’ lack of success with gardening points to the impossibility of that aspiration. Instead, more than ever, I realize how much the past is so crucial to the present and future development of someone’s appreciations and tastes for food. This irregular, unfinished-looking (aka rustic) summer plum tart is a delicious homage to foodie childhoods. The crisp, all-butter crust and richly gooey plum filling make this dessert perfect for warm evenings with someone special. Served with a healthy portion of nostalgia.
I love all the different colors evident in fruit. There’s a frosty blue-ish white, a deep crimson, and even spontaneous flecks of gold… all in an ordinary batch of grocery store plums.
Although these plums are not the exact variety I enjoyed growing up (those had flesh that was a solid red… almost like the soles of Louboutins), I still loved the sunset-like ombre effect they had. Pretty to look at, a pain to cut open and de-pit.
After all the plum slices have been cut, toss them in a mixture of sugar, corn starch, salt, and vanilla extract. The recipe I used also asks for some milk, but I don’t really think that’s necessary, considering how wet the fruit is.
Arrange the sugar coated plum slices in a pie crust-fitted pie pan. As always, I swear by Smitten Kitchen’s guide to pie crusts.
I like to just fold the edges over the center. Nice and cozy.
Before it goes in the oven to bake, I sprinkle the crust with some turbinado sugar.
When the crust is golden brown and the fruit filling is bubbling, it’s time!
The crust turned out beautifully.
I love it when fruit and flaky crust just smears all over the plate when you want to serve it. I think that’s when you know you have a plate of something good. I don’t think I’ve ever had a truly amazing tart or pie that stayed perfectly formed on the plate during consumption.
And this is really, really good plum tart.
P. S. Don’t be unintelligent like me and do remember to either butter the bottom of the pie pan or line it with parchment paper…
Plum Tart (Called plum pie too, but it’s hard for me to think of anything open-faced as a pie… except pumpkin pie.)
Adapted from Baking Bites
- 2 pounds of fresh plums (8-10 approximately)
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/4 cup of corn starch
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extact
- 2 tablespoons of milk (not necessary)
- 3-4 tablespoons of turbinado sugar
- 1 recipe of pie dough for a single crust pie