Tart shows cook's skills

August 16, 1998|By Annette Gooch | Annette Gooch,UNIVERSAL PRESS SYNDICATE

An exquisite fresh-fruit tart reflects culinary craftsmanship as much as artistry. The challenge lies in crafting a pastry shell that can hold several pints of fresh fruit without turning soggy.

Cole Publishing Group

Raspberry-Almond Tart

Serves 6 to 8

SWEET TART PASTRY:

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup sugar

2 extra-large egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter

1 1/4 cups flour

ALMOND FILLING:

7 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 1/4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar

1 1/4 cups finely ground blanched almonds

1 small egg, lightly beaten

1 cup red currant or red raspberry jelly

1 tablespoon raspberry-flavored liqueur or kirsch

2 to 3 cups fresh raspberries, washed and well-drained

To prepare tart shell, place all ingredients except flour in food processor; process with 4 one-second pulses. Add flour and process with 6 to 8 one-second pulses, or until dough begins to clump (but doesn't form a ball). Gather into rough mound. Work small portions of the dough against work surface with heel of hand. When dough is pliable enough to peel away from work surface in one piece, press into ball. Wrap well and refrigerate until firm.

Allow dough to warm slightly. Place on lightly floured surface; sprinkle flour over dough. Roll out from center toward edge to form rough circle 1/8-inch thick and 1 1/2 inches larger than diameter of tart pan, reflouring surfaces as necessary to prevent sticking. Use cupped hands to shape edges of dough. If tears occur, patch with small pieces of dough moistened with water. Avoid rerolling.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Carefully transfer dough to 9 1/2-inch tart pan with removable bottom, molding dough to bottom and sides of pan. Trim dough even with top of tart band. Line dough with foil and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Partially bake until golden (5 to 10 minutes). Remove beans and foil. Cool pastry.

Reduce oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Stir in ground almonds. Add egg and mix well. Spread almond mixture over bottom of cooled tart shell. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, then cool.

Melt jelly over low heat until bubbly. Remove from heat and stir in liqueur. Brush almond filling and inner sides of pastry shell with thin layer of jelly mixture.

Arrange raspberries in circles over filling. Reheat remaining jelly and brush over berries. Remove tart band and serve.

Pub Date: 8/16/98

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