I’ve already gushed to all of you about the wonders of frozen puff pastry dough, and this weekend it came in handy once again when I was asked to bring a dessert to a 4th of July party.
The friend who was hosting the get-together is a great lover of fruit desserts, and I had just been to the farm and picked up black plums, pluots (an apricot/plum hybrid), and fresh-picked blueberries… And conveniently the frozen puff pastry package comes with two sheets, enough for two baking sheet sized rectangular tarts.
I decided to do one all-blueberry tart mixed with sugar, a bit of cinnamon and lemon zest.
And another with the plums and pluots, mixed with just a bit of sugar and dotted with butter. I loved how the colors of the fruit contrasted, the dark purple of the black plum with the orange-white flesh of the pluot. I let the kids layer some of the fruit on the pastry dough to make a pattern: looks like a Mondrian painting, no?
All of that colorful, juicy, densely flavorful fruit makes quite an impact when presented on flaky pastry, and I’m not lying to you when I say it’s super easy. Maybe not every kid will pass up an ice cream sundae for a piece of fruit tart, but at the party there was one boy who instantly sidled up to the blueberry tart and asked his mother for a slice (apparently he’s a major blueberry fan) and demolished it before asking for another. Before he left for home I had wrapped up two more slices to take with him—I love you, Daniel!
Recipe for plum or blueberry (or any stone fruit) tart:
-Defrost frozen puff pastry dough on the counter for about 45 minutes.
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
-Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
-Slice 4-6 plums and/or pluots, about a 1/4 inch per slice, place in a bowl and toss with 1/4 cup of sugar.
-Wash 1 quart of blueberries and toss in a separate bowl with 1/4 cup of sugar, sprinkle of cinnamon and zest of one lemon.
-One at a time take one pastry sheet and roll it out on lightly floured surface until it’s a large rectangle, about a 1/4 inch thick. Place on parchment paper. Repeat with second sheet of puff pastry.
-On first sheet of prepared pastry spread blueberries in an even layer. Dot with 3 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter cut into small cubes.
-On second sheet of prepared pastry make a single layer of sliced plums in a pretty pattern. Dot with 3 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter cut into small cubes.
-Place tarts in the oven, side by side, and bake for approximately 40 minutes or until bubbly and crust is golden brown.