An excellent tart for a bit of spring joy with friends. Serve it with crème fraiche with vanilla bean paste, a tablespoon of sugar and a bit of orange zest stirred through.
The pastry recipe makes twice the amount you’ll need for the tart, but keeps for a week, well-wrapped, in the fridge, or 3 months in the freezer. I know it looks weird to make it directly on the kitchen bench, but it’s much easier than doing it in a bowl.
If you don’t have a tart or flan ring, don’t worry – a normal, springform cake tin works just as well.
250g plain flour
200g butter, cut into small pieces and slightly softened
100g icing sugar
Pinch of salt
2 egg yolks
Heap the flour on the work surface and make a well. Put in the butter, icing sugar and salt. With your fingers, rub together the butter with the sugar and salt, then add the egg yolks and work them in too.
Gradually start incorporating the rest of the flour and gently bring everything together until it is smooth. Using the palm of your hand, knead the dough 3 or 4 times and roll into a ball and wrap it up til ready to use it.
115g butter, softened
1/3 cup honey
100g ground almonds
1 tspn almond essence (optional)
¼ cup double cream
10-12 plums, halved and pitted.
Beat the butter, honey, almonds, eggs and almond essence together until smooth. Stir in the cream with a spatula (don’t beat it in, or it will rise in the oven).
Line the tart tin with half of the pastry made (keep the rest for another one). This is actually easier if you put the ball of dough in the tin and push it out with your fingertips so it covers the tin.
Bake the case blind at 175C for 15 minutes.
At this point you can brush the pastry case with a little egg white so that it as it dries, the case stays crispy once the filling is poured in.
Pour the frangipane into the pastry case, making sure that it covers the whole base of the tart. Arrange the plums in rings in the case.
You can fill in any gaps with quarters. Bake it at 180C for 30-35 minutes, or until the frangipane has risen up around the plums and golden.