Tart


This weeks’ theme for I Heart Cooking Clubs was Fresh and Fruity.  Which is a great theme for this time of the year.  So many fresh fruits and veggies everywhere.  But here in the south while we have plenty of veggies coming in we don’t really have any fruits.  Watermelon is about all.  Fortunately for me I have some ‘fresh’ fruit that I canned last year so I used that.

For these….

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apple and pear upside-down caramel tarts

They are mini versions of a tarte Tatin and they are easy to put together.  And delicious.

Caramel sauce:
    1 ½ cups sugar
    4 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
    ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 cup whipping cream

Tarts:

    2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, quartered, cored and cut into ½-inch–thick wedges
    2 Anjou pears, peeled, quartered, cored and cut into ½-inch-thick wedges
    1 frozen puff pastry sheet (half of 17.3-ounce package), thawed
  • To make the caramel sauce: Stir the sugar and 1/3 cup water in a medium heavy saucepan over a medium heat until the sugar dissolves and the syrup comes to a simmer, occasionally brushing down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush to remove any sugar that clings to the side.
  • The sugar that clings to the side of the pan has a tendency to crystallize and ruin the silky consistency of the caramel, so wiping the sugar off the sides of the pan will help prevent this from happening.
  • Allow the sugar syrup to boil without stirring, brushing down the sides of the pan and swirling the pan occasionally to ensure it cooks evenly, for about 8 minutes or until it begins to turn golden brown.
  • You will need to watch the syrup closely as it can burn quite easily.
  • Remove the pan from the heat.
  • Add the butter and whisk until the butter melts and the mixture forms a caramel sauce. Stir in the cinnamon.
  • Pour three-fourths of the caramel sauce into four 4-inch-diameter cake pans with at least 1 3/4-inch-high sides, dividing equally.
  • Allow the caramel in pans to cool.
  • Whisk the cream into the remaining caramel sauce to blend and set the caramel sauce aside.
  • To make the tarts: Arrange a layer of the apples and pears decoratively over the caramel in the pans, then stack the remaining apples and pears to fill the pans completely. Unfold the pastry on a work surface and press the seams together if necessary.
  • Cut out four 4-inch rounds.
  • Place the pastry rounds over the apples and pears and tuck the pastry down between the sides of the pans.
  • Prick the pastry 5 to 6 times with a fork or small sharp knife.
  • Cover the tarts with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day to chill the pastry.
  • Preheat the oven to 450° F.
  • Transfer the tarts to a baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and cooked through and the apples are very tender.
  • Let rest at room temperature for 20 minutes to allow the flavors to meld and the juices to cool and thicken slightly.
  • Place a plate over each tart.
  • In a swift movement, invert each tart onto each plate.
  • Remove the pans.
  • Drizzle some of the reserved caramel sauce around the tarts and serve.
  • Reserve any remaining caramel sauce in the refrigerator for another use.
  • These are definitely going into the dessert rotation. I always have puff pastry in the freezer and always have apples and pears on the counter (or in the pantary) so it would be no trouble to put these together – often.

    These are from relaxed cooking with curtis stone (page 358)

    Check wit the other members of I Heart Cooking Club to see what they made with fruit this week.

    I’ve always liked Donna Hay’s books.  Kayte introduced me to her recipes way back in 2012 when I joined Wednesday’s with Donna Hay.  Since then I have added four of her wonderful books to my collection.  Even tho’ I have made a lot of her dishes I still have plenty more marked.  Thank goodness for PotLuck with I Heart Cooking Clubs..

    We needed a dessert in the house.  But we are trying to go sugar free.  But we needed a dessert.  Fortunately there are several with Donna that are easily adaptable using a sugar substitute rather than the real thing.

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    Custard Tart

    I feared that the custard would not thicken if using Splenda with Fiber but my fears were unfounded.  It thickened nicely and made a great dessert for us.

    The recipe calls for using warmed milk with a vanilla bean.  Instead, after warming the two I split the bean and added the seeds to the milk.  I did bring out the vanilla flavor a lot better.  And I hated to waste a whole bean.

    This was just perfect.  Not a big sweet dessert.  Just sweet enough to enjoy after dinner.

    I made 1/2 the recipe and ended up with 4 mini tarts (rather than pies).  I added just a little whipped cream on top.

    The recipe is from Donna’s The New Cook.  (page 181)

    Potluck brings all kinds of good dishes to the table.  Check out the POTLUCK for May at IHCC.

    Gaye’s choice for this week was DESSERT!  We haven’t made dessert with Ellie in a while and that’s a shame because her’s are tasty AND healthy!!

    I chose to make the Rustic Pear Tart.   Mainly because it’s easy but also because The Man does love pears. 

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    This tart is super easy because you make the whole wheat crust and just fill it and fold it up around the pears.  No pie plate.  No trimming.  No patching.

    Ellie suggested 3 medium pears but I had some canned pears from the orchard and chose to use those instead.  I had canned them with very little sugar but I cut down on the brown sugar from 3 Tbl to 2 Tbl just in case.  I had also canned some pears with cinnamon but figured I would use the plain instead.  The filling also has cinnamon, cornstarch, brown sugar and lemon juice. I forgot the lemon juice, but….ah, well!!  The tart is brushed with a mix of honey and water after baking to give it a nice sweet taste.

    The recipe is from Ellie’s Comfort Food Fix  {page 284} but you can also find it HERE!

    Check out more desserts on Divine Desserts at Eating with Ellie.

    Thank goodness for leap year 2016!  It means one more day of February and one more day to add another recipe from Perelman’s Smitten Kitchen cookbook.  I knew I wanted to make one more dish but I was going to be gone all weekend.  As luck would have it I came home a little early and in time to cook again with Deb.

    While I was out of town I visited my fave Vietnamese grocery and found a huge, HUGE, bag of fresh oyster mushrooms.  I always love browsing in  Vinh Phat Market.  So many wonderful flavors and spices and noodles and other foods that I cannot find in Podunk, USA.

    While I had planned to make the eggplant and three cheese calzone these ‘shrooms swayed me toward the tart instead.

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    For the crust:

    • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • ¼ cup yellow cornmeal
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into ½ inch pieces
    • 1 large egg
    For the filling:
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced {I used 1/4 of a medium yellow onion.}
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
    • ½ pound cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
    • 1 pound assorted wild mushrooms (such as shiitake or oyster), torn into small pieces*
    • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
    • freshly ground pepper, to taste
    • ¼ cup mascarpone cheese, room temperature
    • ¼ cup milk
    • 2 large eggs
    • ½ cup freshly grated Provolone cheese  {Gruyere would be good here, too.}
    • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

    Crust:  Put  the flour, cornmeal and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Add in the butter. Pulse until the butter is the size of tiny peas. Add the egg and process until the dough starts to clump together (it will look like wet sand). Dump the dough onto a floured surface and use your hands to bring it together. Roll out the dough to a 12-inch circle Transfer the dough to a 9-inch tart pan and press the dough against the bottom and sides. Remove the excess dough from the top. Place the tart pan on a baking sheet and put in the freezer until firm, about 30 minutes.  By doing this you don’t need to prebake and the crust will not be soggy.

    Filling:  set a large skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and butter. When the butter is melted, add the shallots. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 2 to 3 minutes, until soft. Add in the garlic and thyme and cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Increase the heat to medium high and add in the mushrooms (if the mushrooms won’t all fit in your skillet, add as many as you can and as they cook down you’ll be able to add more to the pan). Cook for about 9 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender and the liquid has evaporated. Stir in ½ teaspoon salt and pepper (to taste). Transfer to a plate to cool.

    In a medium bowl, add the mascarpone. Slowly pour in the milk and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Whisk in the eggs. Add in the Provolone and Parmesan and remaining ½ teaspoon salt. Add in the cooled mushrooms and mix to combine.

    Carefully pour the mixture into the tart shell. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until slightly puffed and lightly golden brown on the top (if you insert the tip of a small knife into the center, it should not release any wet custard). Let the tart cool for at least 10 minutes before removing from the pan to serve. Serve warm or at room temperature.  (Better at room temp rather than just out of the oven.)

    I made two changes.  After coming home from the store I realized I had forgotten the Mascarpone.  I didn’t really want to drive to the store again so I found a substitute recipe for it (especially since I only needed 1/4 cup).  It worked surprisingly well. I also couldn’t find grated Provolone so I simply lined the tart crust with slices of Provolone.  Still lots of flavor in each bite. And there was melted cheese on the bottom.

    This was SOOO good.  Lots of flavor in the filling.  I think when I make it again I will add some Parmesan to the crust as well.  Or maybe some Asiago.  Or some Romano.  The crust was kind of bland.  But I liked the extra texture the cornmeal added.  I think adding some cheese would simply enhance the flavor of the overall tart.  If you love ‘shrooms you really need to make this!

    I made the whole amount of the recipe and had enough for the rectangular tart and a 4″ mini.

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    Thanks to Cook Book Countdown I have made 4 more of Deb’s recipes.  Now, about the other 15….

    The recipe is from Smitten Kitchen by deb Perelman  (page 95).  I also found the recipe on line at cook nourish bliss.

    I’m linking this post with Cookbook Countdown hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily’s Cooking (Makan2) Foray.

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    If you like a little sweet and a little sour then you will like this little tart. The tartness of the fresh cranberries. The sweetness of the meringue and the strawberry jam. The crunch of the tart crust. What’s not to like?

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    Not the prettiest pics, but ……

    What Dorie has given us is a simple meringue filled with cranberries and baked in a strawberry lined sweet crust. Simple. I only made 1/2 of the recipe and ended up with two 4″ tarts {instead of pie plates I used tarts}which was quite enough for two of us.

    P1050614Definitely a repeat!

    BTW you can find the recipe HERE, but you really need to buy Dorie’s new book and enjoy ALL her wonderful recipes. And this one is on page 135 of Baking Chez Moi

    If you want to join in the Tuesdays with Dorie/Baking Chez Moi – fun just check out The Rules. We bake twice a month. No commitment. Just lots of tasty treats.

    AND if you want to see the other Dorista’s tarts they are HERE.

    I know I haven’t been with the group much, the Baking with Julia group, but somehow life got crazy and I wasn’t baking as much. And then I actually did make this tart and then forgot to post it. So better late than never!

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    I made just one small tart. Just for me. I ate it. It was WONDERFUL! Is there anything better than caramelized onions? Why, yes, there is. Caramelized onions with bacon!!

    This was super simple. A small disk of puff pastry covered in “melted” onions mixed with cream and bacon. Done!!

    You can see the rest of the tarts by clicking over to Baking With Julia. And you should try this. Really!!

    Recipe is on page page 426 of Baking with Julia and was contributed by Michel Richard.

    This week it was my turn again to pick the recipe for the Wednesday with Donna Hay gals. I really wanted to do something different. Something I would never make under ordinary circumstances. Cooking with the other three ladies – Gaye, Chaya, and Sarah – I try to not to pick the ordinary. So this time I went with:

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    Anchovies have never been an item on any of my menus – or Pizzas – so this recipe of Donna Hay really caught my attention. Even if you don’t care much for the salty little fishies you really need to try out this tart. The onions, black olives, and Parm cheese really blend together well and the little fishies add another layer of flavor that adds saltiness but not fishy-ness. The onions are slightly caramelized, mixed with brown sugar and Balsamic vinegar and then piled on some puff pastry and topped with the olives, thyme, and anchovies. The Parm cheese forms a nice foundation.

    I have to tell you – these were GOOD!!! Lots and lots of flavor. No changes to be made. Except—I think next time I would use shredded Parm rather than grated.

    Go visit with

      Chaya,
      Sarah, and
      Gaye and see if they liked my pick this week.

      You can find the recipe on Donna’s website. And on page 170 of Modern Classics: Book 1

      AND…if you would like cook/bake along with us we are using the recipes from Donna’s website and from this cookbook. No pressure. We just cook and bake and blog.

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