Black Plum Tartes Tatin

Tarte tatin

the fruit

(This picture will be changed soon as the kids say
it looks like meat, and not at all appetizing!)

This fall dessert is doing the rounds in so many blogs, I just could not help drooling. Ten (Sorry 13!!) years back such images would make me rush to Merwans in Andheri or Gaylord's in Churchgate to satisfy my tastebuds, but since the time I discovered the joy of cooking there has been no looking back. Before that - forget baking, I was a lousy cook - all I knew was making rice that too only in a pressure cooker, and mashed potatoes!

Even as I am furiously punching the keyboard there is a fight going on in the hall.
H - The older one, my daughter.
P - The younger one, my son.

H feels P has no manners. ["Mummy, he is banging the ladle on his plate."],
P feels H is dominating ["Mummy, she is acting as though she is my Mummy."],
I scream to make myself heard ["DON'T TALK. JUST EAT, and H, I am still here to correct him."]
H feels Mummy is partial to P ["Mummy, he is rude and he gets away. If I did that you would have scolded me."]
and Mummy only wants a few moments of peace till she finishes this post.

I am sure this bit must have made my Mummy happy. You won't believe the number of curses she inflicted on me when I was a teen. The most powerful curse was - "May you grow up, get married and have at least two children exactly like you." If I bawled or argued I would get a triumphant look that meant - "Aha! So you too do not want to have someone like you." I can almost see her dream and my nightmare coming true.

I hear some sparks now - P makes some vomiting noises, H says 'chee chee' - before it flares, here we go for the recipe in a jiffy and some photographs to snap shut this post:)

I used Helen's (Of that Magic Land called Tartlette) recipe from the persimmons chai tartes tatin except for a few changes to suit me. I used black plums thinking I was smart and that I would have something nice for FIC-Purple but the plums were bewitched - they turned blood red!! Look!

The fruit that goes under:
4 black plums, cleaned, cored and cut into thin wedges or chopped
4 tbsp. vegan butter spread
I did not measure but added a little sugar to just sweeten the plums
Updated:I made the fruit filling in two batches (2 plums at a time), and I upped the sugar in the second batch - I didn't like the very sweet version but then no one in our family is a totally 'sweets' person.
1 tsp. - spice mix (I have ready spice mix for most pies made of cardamom, dry ginger, nutmeg and a little pepper that I use anywhere)


Puff pastry (Another Tartlette recipe) - I made the entire quantity the previous evening and stored it overnight, but had to use only half the dough for these six tarte tatins and some mini croissants and danish pastry with the left over tit bits. I have not compromised on the fat this time. Since we in India have access to any APF and no other versions of refined flour, I had to make do with it. The process of making a puff pastry is laborious but the flaky crust makes up for everything!

Updated: If you would like a low in fat recipe check up Vaishali's version.

The dough
Melt the butter. Add sugar and simmer. Add sliced or chopped plums and spice mix and cook till soft and caramelized.

Divide the fruit in the tart shells and reserve the liquid.

Tarts filled with topping that goes under

Note: The original recipe tells you to divide the fruit slices and reserve the liquid. I somehow missed this line and divided the caramalised syrup along with the liquid evenly in six tart shells.

Musings for future reference: Because of the little carelessness two of the tarts ended up with extra syrup and they became soggy. The ones we ate, the one I gave especially for the little girl next door and the one I took to office were all crisp and tasty but the ones I left out on the table for the kids when they returned from school, and they said it was too sweet and soggy.

Lesson: I learned that these should be served fresh and are not for keeping for hours before you eat.

Roll out the puff pastry dough and cut circles of the same circumference as your tart shells. Again the thickness of the pastry layer was not specified. I rolled to about 0.5cm thick. Lay one piece over each tart shell and bake till the crust is crisp and brown.

Note: The original recipe says 350F for 15 minutes. I had to bake at 220 deg. C. for 25 minutes. I guess that is alright, as my OTG always takes double the time specified even otherwise. The fact that puffs were layered, flaky and crisp was enough to let me know it was done perfectly.

Remove from the oven and let cool a few minutes before inverting onto your plates.

one batch done

Spoon any remaining juices from the pan over the fruits.

A slice

I would suggest that you eat soon. Do not muse, sing, clean, dust and then sit.

Before I forget to put in P's contribution. He squeezed this mug of sweet lime as I was rolling the dough:)

the juice

I know the pictures are not great but that is how my morning pictures are on weekdays! Who has the time to breathe when you have kids, and a clock that seems to move time forward ten times faster!

After cutting out the rounds all sorts of shapes were left over and I turned them into croissant shapes. As soon as they were out of the oven, I packed them for shortbreak and sent them with the kids. All I have is the dough pictures:)

mini croissants

I will make this again and savor the post too! Now P is hissing, H is bellowing and when I screamed, "What is that noise?", P hissed more, I shouted more, P said "See! I am speaking in parseltongue." How potty can one get over Potter?

Hisssssssssss......... (That means 'have a good sleep or a happy day' in parseltongue!)

Updated: The verdict
All the adults loved it, and all the kids (the little one next door too) did not want a second serving. P and I hogged what was left in the evening when I returned home from work. That was when I found that the crust was not as crisp as it had been in the morning, and the part that was in contact with the fruit had become soft as if it had absorbed the juice - no wonder the poor things didn't like.

They loved the mini croissants like anything which meant the puff pastry was a hit! I wonder what I am gong to make with the left over puff pastry dough!

Lesson: Cook 'n Eat. Do not reserve!!

I found a link which I think is very useful for baking. Just putting it down for my reference:

Puff paste - Part 3


Relished and featured in Tongue Ticklers......

Mango Cream Shortcake

Mango Banana Frangipane Tart

Labels: , , , ,