That luscious, oh “nothing could taste better than this” moment happens daily during the summer. And it cannot just be to me.
Summer is the season of edible riches. Peaches, so many, they roll of the table at the Farmer’s market but you don’t mind because they’re just perfect. Blueberries are lined up in their paper cartons, you can’t help but pick one up to try. So tart, so sweet, they are poetic in their own sort of way. You leave the market with bags full of culinary gems, your head swirling with ideas. What can I do with all of this?
I made this recipe at the beginning of the summer, but it only felt natural to post only recently since stone fruit is at its peak right now. This comes from David Tanis’ cookbook (or labor of love) Heart of the Artichoke: and other kitchen journeys. This cookbook has provided me with countless amounts of inspiration and the dishes are so simple. Tanis takes an idea and lets it become a meal that is satisfying in an earthy and unpretentious way.
But of course I had to change the recipe up a little bit by making individual tarts in their own ramekins. If you want to make the recipe like I did, just split the dough up between four to six ramekins and make until the pastry is browned and the apricots are warm and cooked down a bit. Otherwise, I do not want to rewrite Tanis’ words so below is what is in his cookbook.
Make this because his recipes, and the apricots, are that good.
[From David Tanis, Heart of the Artichoke]
- 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for sprinkling
- About ½ cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
- Pinch of salt
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold butter, cut into very small pieces
- ¼ cup ice water
- 1 pound firm but ripe apricots
- ¼ cup water
1. Put the flour, ½ teaspoon of the sugar, and the salt into a mixing bowl, and work in 4 tablespoons of the butter with your fingers until it is well incorporated. Add the remaining butter, leaving it in little chunks. Stir in the ice water.
2. Gather the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and then squash it into a disk. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into a circle approximately 14 inches in diameter. Transfer to a large baking sheet lined with parchment and refrigerate while you prepare the apricots and make the glaze.
4. With a sharp paring knife, cut the apricots in half to remove the pits, then cut into quarters. Roughly chop ½ cup of the apricots for the glaze. In a small saucepan, bring the chopped apricots, ½ cup sugar, and the ¼ cup water to a brisk simmer and cook for about 20 minutes; strain and cool.
5. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Sprinkle the circle of dough with about a tablespoon of flour, to keep it from getting soggy. Leaving a 2-inch border, arrange the apricot quarters skin side down in concentric circles until you’ve covered the entire surface of the pastry. Trim an inch from the edge of the pastry and gently fold up the remaining edge over the fruit. Sprinkle the fruit and the overlapping pastry generously with sugar.
6. Bake the tart for 35 to 40 minutes, until the pastry is nicely browned and the edges of the apricots are slightly caramelized.
7. Carefully slide the tart, still on its parchment, onto a cooling rack. While the tart is still warm, paint the apricots with the glaze. Serve at room temperature.