Crostata di Albicocche

Apricot Tart

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • 6–8

    people

Appears in

Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

By Alastair Little

Published 1996

  • About

Choose ripe apricots – for me this is the best of the myriad fruit tarts served at La Cacciata. Good-quality dried apricots plumped in a little sweetened warm water then soused with a little brandy make a very acceptable substitute.

This apricot tart represents the master recipe. I detail the various preparations needed to substitute other fruits hereafter.

Ingredients

  • 1 Pastry Shell, frozen
  • 1 recipe Frangipane
  • 1 kg ripe apricots
  • 4 tbsp caster sugar
  • 50 g flaked almonds
  • icing sugar to dust

Method

Cut the apricots in half along their rather anatomical seam, twist and separate, then dig out the stone. Lay them in a tray and sprinkle with the sugar, massage them a little and leave to macerate for an hour.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Place the frangipane mix in the still frozen pastry shell, then drain the apricots and insert them: stack them on their sides, standing almost vertically, so that they prop each other up. They shrink rather a lot during cooking so use plenty and pack the case tightly, pressing them into the frangipane.

Bake for a half an hour, then scatter with flaked almonds, and dust generously with icing sugar. Return to the oven turned down to 150°C/300°F/Gas 2 for 45 minutes more.

If the tart is getting excessively brown but is not yet fully cooked in the interior, loosely cover with foil and proceed as before.

It is not a good idea to eat the tart hot, as the fruit has a high sugar content and gets very hot. This pastry is best served warm or at room temperature. Never, never let it near a fridge.

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