A week or so ago a new friend emailed me. She had tried out Orangette’s recipe for apricot tart. Apparently it was dazzling. My friend’s a wonderful writer and the combination of two good writers and one great recipe made me desperate to make this delicacy for our next supper party.
Even though I don’t tend to make desserts, I have a passion for fresh fruit tarts. I haunted Patisserie Valerie in Old Compton Street in the bad old days. Allowing myself just one visit a week, I’d totter away with a carrier bag that filled the vast fridge at work and lasted barely a couple of days.
Shopping with my mother yesterday, I found a pack of fresh apricots in a severely depleted supermarket shelf (The long Bank Holiday weekend means meagre pickings on the Sunday in the UK).
“Don’t buy those. There may be duff ones in the pack!”
She showed me a vast tray of individual apricots just waiting to be selected and transformed into something delicious.
I hesitated, wondering what sort of apricots I needed for the tart. I don’t buy apricots since the apricot brandy disaster a few years ago.
“I have seen people peeling back the top layer to reveal the fruit underneath.”
She gently pulled back the plastic and unveiled some tempting fruit. I selected eight plump specimens, grazing between the layers.
I was quite excited when I made the tart this afternoon. I played with the recipe a bit, making a 50:50 Stork and butter pastry and adding a teaspoonful of Kirsch to the apricots and sugar. Next time it will be all butter pastry for a bit more crumble. This recipe enhanced the flavour of the fruit moving from OK at the preparation stage to zingy and tangy when cooked.
The tart flirted with us all afternoon. Sitting on the side, under a fly proof umbrella, looking so pretty in a glazed apricoty way. It was so quick and easy to make and tasted sublime this evening. Why did I divide the tart equally between the six of us? I could have been nibbling some as I wrote this post.
Thank you, Orangette.
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