The Easter meal with our family this year was nothing less than what I expected. Lots of rich foods, a bit of overindulgence, and the irresistible sleepiness that comes after a meal of such epic proportions. I nearly nodded off during one of Grandma’s down-on-the-farm stories, and let me tell you, I live for those stories. I began to regret that I had eaten the strawberry cupcake and the shoofly pie and the ricotta tart.
With such an indulgent meal behind us, I’m focusing on a fruity dessert that will leave you feeling unencumbered, and maybe even a little sprightly!
There are so many things I love about this recipe. For one, if you don’t like plums you can substitute peaches or apricots. And I love that the filling is little more than sliced fruit! The fruit seems to magically bake down into intensely sweet flavors that are more complex than the sum of it’s parts. I mean, it’s just sliced fruit topped with a little jam, and what is essentially pie crust scraps and turbinado sugar.
The crust is whole wheat, which I like very much. It has a nutty flavor and goes very well with the sweetness of the baked fruit. Of course, if you don’t care for whole wheat pie crust then you can substitute your favorite recipe in place of the one provided. It just won’t be as healthy. And if you’d prefer that, I’ll totally understand.
As I mentioned earlier, the crumble that goes on top is a mixture of the leftover crust you have trimmed away from the tart pan and 1/4 cup turbinado sugar. There’s a little wheat germ tossed in for added health benefit. I have a theory. In life, you must eat real butter. Why? Because it’s good! Also, in the name of balance, you must eat wheat germ. Why? Because it’s good too! A different good, but still…
The topping really makes this dish. The turbinado sugar melts with the pie crust crumble and makes a delicious crunchy topping. I think I’m on a turbinado sugar kick! I used it in a recent recipe for the same crunch effect.
While waiting for the oven timer to tick down, you get the added bonus of your home being filled with the (hunger pang inducing) smell of baking plum tart.
Mama’s flowers and seedlings in the greenhouse.
This was not only good, but (comparatively) good for us! If you’d like a more indulgent treat, then using a regular pie crust and serving it with a big scoop of ice cream would hit the mark. I may just have to do that… a little later.
Red Plum Tart
Yields 8 servings
2/3 cup whole wheat flour, preferably whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 pinch of salt
1 to 3 tablespoons ice cold water
1/4 cup turbinado sugar (can use plain granulated)
1 tablespoon wheat germ
5-6 red plums, or other plums pitted and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons seedless all fruit raspberry jam or preserves
In a food processor, combine the flours, oil, butter, granulated sugar and salt. Pulse until the mixture looks like wet sand. Add the ice water a little at a time and pulse until the dough begins to form a rough mass. Gently shape the dough into a 4 inch disk on a sheet of plastic wrap. Cover with a second sheet. Roll out into a 10″ round, the dough will be very thin. Place dough in freezer for 5 minutes.
Remove dough from freezer. Peel off 1 plastic sheet and let dough stand until pliable, about 1 or 2 minutes.
Place an 8 inch round tart pan with a removable bottom on a non-stick baking sheet. Carefully fit the dough around the pan. Trim edges and reserve scraps for later use.
In a food processor combine the dough scraps, turbinado sugar and wheat germ. Pulse to blend. Spread half the mixture in the bottom of the tart shell.
Arrange the plum slices in the tart shell in a circular fashion starting at the outer edge and working your way inward. The slices should overlap slightly.
In a small microwave-safe dish, microwave preserves until melted, about 30-45 seconds. Brush plums with preserves. Sprinkle the remaining wheat germ mixture over the plums.
Bake until the fruit is tender and bubbling and the topping is lightly browned, 45-50 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack and cut into 8 wedges. Serve.
Per serving: 162 calories 6 grams of fat 2 grams protein 2 grams fiber 27 carbs