Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Honey-Almond Fig Tart

Yesterday, one of the ladies at work was given a huge bag of fresh, ripe  figs by the company's fruit delivery man.  Through some good fortune, I was given the figs to make a fig tart for the people at work.  I was pretty excited, because these figs were large and lovely and ripe, and Lord knows that figs are rather expensive to buy.  However, I also was a little fearful.  What if the tart didn't work out?  What if people didn't like it?

My first hurdle was to choose a tart recipe.  I needed to choose a recipe that used fresh figs in a sweet tart, but given that I was too lazy to go to the shops after work, only used ingredients that I had on hand.  I also needed a recipe that was easily achievable within an evening.  For a while, I considered making Jamie Oliver's Fig Tart for the second time, just leaving out what I didn't have (eg orange rind, fresh thyme).  However, after a quick flick through the index of Dorie Greenspan's Baking - From My Home to Yours, I came across a recipe for a Honey-Almond Fig Tart.  The recipe is on p373 of the book, or can be found online here.

The drawback with this recipe is that no-one had posted online about this tart, and there was no photo.  Accordingly, if I was going to make this, I was on my own making a previously untried recipe using other people's fruit. Yikes!

Luckily, the tart shell was Dorie's Sweet Tart Dough that I have made a zillion times before and is easy peasy, because you don't have to roll it out - you just press it into the pie pan.

The hitch came with the almond cream filling.  Dorie says to only use as much as will fill the tart shell three quarters full.  I didn't want to waste any of the almond cream, so I put it all into the pie shell.  It fitted easily, but after half an hour n the oven, I had almond cream erupting like lava out of the tart. Luckily, I was able to clean it up easily and the tart wasn't affected.

The next hitch with the almond cream was the baking time.  Dorie quotes a baking time of 35 minutes.   However, even though I turned the oven up higher than stated after 35 minutes because the filling was still molten, it took an hour and a half for the filling to set!  I had to tent the outsides, which browned quickly, with alfoil while the middle of the tart continued to bake.

I was terrified that the bottom of the tart had burned because it took so long for the filling to set - luckily, my fears were not realised.

Despite the hitches, the tart turned out well - it was a deep burnished brown with glossy figs glistening on the surface like jewels.  Best of all, it passed the taste test with the punters.

Dorie said that she likes to eat this  tart on its own without any accompaniments - and that is just what we did.  The tart is devinely rich, and a small piece is enough to satisfy even the sweetest tooth.


Gloria said...

Cakelaw what amazing tart, love figs, look yummy gloria

adele said...

Sounds like the people you work with are ridiculously lucky - this tart looks great!

Elaine said...

How lucky you were to get figs to make the tart, but I know how stressful it must have been because you wanted it to turn out perfectly, especially for the person who gave you the tarts. It looks so pretty and with the almond cream filling I can imagine how delicious it was. I am so glad everyone at work liked it!

Johanna GGG said...

wow you are getting orders for baking to take to work - they must love the food you bring in - and the tart looks great - I bought figs just before renovations began and never got the chance to use them as the kitchen went crazy = they would have been great in this

Anonymous said...

OMG, this recipe includes almond pastry cream! Yum, yum, yum! Your tart looks delicious!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

You are so good! I would absconded with the figs and eaten the whole lot greedily and without remorse :P

Conor @ Hold the Beef said...

Ooh I remember your fig frangipane pie! In fact, I've often thought of that since reading that post, as I've been wanting to make it ever since seeing yours but somehow never did, and every time I think of the coming fresh figs I think of your pie :)

Amanda said...

Wow, this looks great. I'm on my way out the back to check out the fig tree to see if the birds have left me any!