Tag Archives: blueberries

Summer Berry Tart

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Summer Berry Tart
Berries are quite possibly THE thing I love the most about summer and the presence of berry desserts signals holiday for me more than anything else. As every Russian child that grew up in the city I loved going away to a “dacha” on weekends and getting lost in the garden picking or, more likely, eating copious amounts of plentiful fruits and berries.

I was quite disappointed when I first moved to the States to find that the “berries” were reduced to strawberries, blueberries and raspberries, and perhaps blackberries if you are lucky. In my world there were so much more! What about gooseberries,  wild strawberries. black, red and white currants?

Summer Berry Tart
Thankfully, due to the resurgence of farmer’s markets and people’s general interest in gardening my little summer heros are popping up all over the place which means lots of desserts for me!

Summer Berry TartSummer Berry Tart
Ingredients:

  • Mixed seasonal berries- 600 gr
  • Meringue nests (broken)-4
  • Double Cream- 250 gr/1 cup
  • Creme Fraiche- 125 gr/1/2 cup
  • Icing Sugar- 1/4 cup
  • Vanilla bean (seeds scraped out)-1
  • Rum (optional)- 1 tbsp.

For the tart:

  • Flour-250 gr plus extra for dusting
  • Icing sugar-50 gr
  • Unsalted butter (cut into small cubes)-125 gr
  • Egg-1 large
  • Milk- a little splash
  • Butter for greasing the tart tin

Summer Berry Tart

Method:

First off, if you can find a great tasting all butter pre-made tart and it’s blazing hot outside, go ahead and purchase one! I am all about shortcuts in the kitchen as long as it doesn’t compromise the taste.

If no such tart available here is what you will do:

Mix the flour and icing sugar in a large bowl, add cubed butter and work it in the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add your egg and a bit of milk just to bring the dough together, form it into a ball.  Wrap it in a plastic wrap and put it in the fridge for 30 min.

Sprinkle your work surface and the rolling pin with some flour, take the dough out of the fridge and roll it out big enough to fit a 9″ loose bottomed tart tin. Grease your tart tin with some butter, drape your dough over the rolling pin and transfer it into the tart tin making sure it comes up the sides, trim off the extra bits and prick it with a fork all over, cover it with a plastic wrap and put it back in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Pre-heat your oven to 180C/350F. Take the tart dough out of the fridge and line it with parchment paper pushing it into the sides, fill the tart with baking beans or rice and bake it “blind” for 10 minutes, take it out, removes the baking beans and parchment paper and bake for 10 minutes longer until firm and golden, cool completely before filling it. (Note: Don’t be tempted to skip the blind baking step, otherwise your tart shell will shrink. I’ve learned the hard way.)

Before serving whip the double cream and creme fraiche with icing sugar, vanilla bean seeds and rum until soft peaks form. Mix it with broken meringue nests and fill your tart with the mixture. Top with mixed berries.

In the last week I’ve made this tart twice!

For this one I used raspberries, blueberries and blackberries.

Summer Berry Tart
Then a few days later I went to a farmer’s market and found red currants. So I had to make another Summer Berry Tart using a generous amount of red currants!

Summer Berry Tart
Dust with a bit of icing sugar for extra drama. 🙂
Summer Berry Tart
Note: This recipe was adapted from Jamie Oliver’s “Jamie Does Sweden”.

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Yellow Plum and Blueberry Galette

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Yellow Plum and Blueberry Galette
What a stunner, isn’t it? It’s hard to believe this galette was made as a desperate attempt to save yellow plums that weren’t moving in my house. They looked so beautiful and so appealing but after a few days in the fruit basket remained hard as a rock and quite sour.Typical problem for winter fruit shipped from who knows where.
Yellow Plums and Bluberries
I love making galettes, they are very easy to throw together and seem to provide a more even pie crust to filling ratio than a traditional pie. I also paired plums with blueberries to liven up the flavours. As I mentioned earlier the plums were not ripe, so the only way to make sure blueberries and plums had the same texture once the galette is done was to pre-cook plums.
Ingredients:

  • Yellow plums- 13-15 small 
  • Blueberries- 1 cup
  • Sugar-1/4 cup plus extra for dusting
  • Vanilla essence- 1 tsp.
  • Water- 1/4 cup
  • Prepared pie crust (your favourite recipe or pre-made)-1
  • Egg (beaten)-1

Method:

Preheat your oven to 400F/200C.

In a saucepan combine plums, split in half and pits removed, sugar, vanilla and water. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes or until the plums are tender. The length of this step will depend on how hard your plums are, if they are ripe feel free to skip this step.

Remove the plums from the pan to a plate and let them cool. Meanwhile dust your work surface with some flour and roll out your pastry 12″ in diameter. Wrap the pastry around the rolling pin and transfer it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Arrange your plums cut side down and blueberries attractively on the the pastry leaving an inch wide border filling free. Fold the border over the fruit while brushing the pleats of pastry with a beaten egg to hold the pastry in place and also to give your galette a beautiful golden colour. Sprinkle the pastry with additional sugar if desired. Bake in the oven for 25-30 min.

Yellow Plum and Blueberry Galette

Such an easy and beautiful treat to enjoy after dinner or on a quiet afternoon with your cup of tea and a friend. Life couldn’t get any better than that!

Yellow Plum and Blueberry Galette
Note: If you have a real sweet tooth you might want to increase the sugar amount but it was perfect for me. Also, you can continue cooking the syrup from the plums until it’s reduced in volume and looks like a jam. Use it as a vanilla flavoured homemade plum spread for your morning toast.