Sunday, October 18, 2015

Autumn Tart with Plums and Mascarpone

This is the tart that I make most often. It is easy, delicious and, so far, everyone loved it. Moreover, the crust for it can be made up to two weeks ahead and keeping it refrigerated makes it actually more delicate. I have already shared the recipe for this tart, but recently I have been experimenting with it and, today, I would like to share of the new versions, which I think turned out quite good.

I make this tart with different fruits, toppings, or add extra ingredients to the base. Last weekend, I made it with plums. In Poland, fall is the season when we make many desserts with plums. For baking, the best are those dark blue plums called Hungarian or Italian plums but, if they are not available, any black or dark plums can be used instead.

The base is the same that I always used; however, this time I changed the topping. Since plums can be quite strong in taste and are often sour, to contrast them, instead of cream I used Mascarpone cheese to make a delicate and somewhat richer topping. This tart can be served at room temperature but it tastes even better slightly warm, especially on a cold autumn day.

Tart with Plums and Mascarpone

(For 10" tart form with removable walls)

For the crust:
2 sticks of unsalted butter at room temperature,
1/2 cup confectioners sugar,
2 cups all purpose flour,

For the topping:
1 and 1/2 lb Italian plums (or any other not too juicy dark plums),
17 oz box of mascarpone cheese,
1 large egg,
1/3 cup sugar.

1. To make the crust, put butter, confectioners sugar and flour in a large bowl. Working with your hands make crumbles. Use extra flour to clean your hands.

2. Place the crust in a large ziplock bag, and let it chill in a refrigerator for at least an hour, up to two weeks.
3. Preheat the oven to 350F.
4. Spread the crust on the baking form and press gently into bottom and walls.
5. Remove seeds from the plums and cut them into thick slices. Arrange at the bottom of the form on top of the crust.

6. Bake the crust for about 20 minutes, until set and light gold.
7. In a medium bowl mix sugar with egg and Mascarpone cheese until smooth. Pour over the pre-baked tart.
8. Place the tart in the oven and bake for about 30-40 minutes until the crust is gold and topping set.