Trips to the market lately have resulted in a fridge full of berries and all manner of fruits: apples, mangoes, oranges - never mind the big bananas in the basket on my kitchen counter. Big piles of cherries, mounds of berries and all manner of freshly-picked delights at the local grocery store are too enticing to pass up, especially since this produce is at such low cost because of its seasonal availability. Dreaming of how I'll use it all up before it begins to spoil got me thinking about yummy summer desserts that involve fruit. Pies and tarts were the first thing that came to mind. Leafing through the June 1998 issue of Martha Stewart Living I discovered a dessert I had not noticed before: a delicious-looking summer tart that looks surprisingly easy to make. I may make it when I have a bit more time to spend in the kitchen but for now I'll share it with you and add it to my to-do list before summer (and all its bounty) expires. I hope you try it! If you do, let me know how it turns out.
6 apricots, about 13 ounces, pitted and cut into eighths
1/2 cup assorted berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries)
8 tablespoons of sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons of unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
1 large egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup whipped cream (optional)
1. Heat oven to 400 and have ready an ungreased, 8-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. In a medium bowl, toss together the apricots, berries and 4 tablespoons of sugar. Set aside
2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, cornmeal, 3 tablespoons sugar, salt, butter, egg yolk and vanilla; pulse until dough begins to come together. Press dough into the tart pan and up the sides. Bake until golden and slightly puffy, about 15 minutes; Remove from oven. Using a spatula, gently flatten the bottom of the crust.
3. Reduce the heat to 350. Meanwhile, arrange the fruit in the crust. Bake for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining tablespoons of sugar. Bake until apricots are juicy and tender, about 15 minutes more. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool. Remove the tart from the tart frame. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.