I have 3 old files stuffed full of newspaper cuttings, handwritten treasures and torn out magazine pages. Oh how I love these files: from time to time I delve deep into them just to remind myself of what I have.
So delve I did, and what should catch my eye but an old Guardian recipe featuring Apple and Almond Tart by Matt Jones of Flour Power City Bakery in London’s Borough Market which I visited so recently and loved so much.
|look at that: delectable apple and almond tart decorated with little pastry hearts|
|fancy a slice?|
Aha I thought. Not at all Christmassy – I haven’t got there yet – but certainly seasonal with lovely crispy apples covered with a frangipane topping. For some reason ekşi elma literally sour apples ie cooking apples, seem to have disappeared from the markets so we have to use Granny Smiths instead but that’s OK.
|peeling and dicing|
I am always keen on pastry-based desserts because you can make the base in advance. That’s my cooking mantra: get ahead while you can! I have my own pastry recipe but this one is a specifically sweet one and is the star of the show. Follow the amounts carefully, and work it with your fingertips till it reaches a sandlike consistency. It was an exceptionally easy pastry to make and to roll. I didn’t even have to put in the fridge to ‘rest’. I know that pastry can be temperamental and that some people are hesitant to even try but this one most certainly wasn’t.
|so easy to handle..|
|not a problem to roll out …|
I also love tarts with a frangipane or almond-based filling especially since friend Dawn got me a huge bag of ground almonds from Metro for a very reasonable price. It’s the basis of that old classic, a bakewell tart too of course.
120g/50z ground almonds (toz badem)
- Pre-heat oven to 180C/350.
|all the dry ingredients plus the butter and lemon zest|
- Work the mixture with the fingertips until a consistency like sand is achieved.
|like this ….|
- Add an egg and bind the mixture – if you need more, add another egg or a drop of water.
- Form it into a smooth ball, working the pastry as little as possible.
- Flatten the dough on a plate and pop it in the fridge ( I didn’t feel the need to do this – instead I rolled it out and made some heart decorations with the extra + a little rustic-look tart!)
- Peel and dice the apples. Sprinkle with cinnamon, brown sugar and the juice of a lemon.
|like this ….|
- Line a 10in/25cm tart tin with the pastry and prick with a fork. Spread the apples evenly in the base.
|the diced apples fill the base nicely – as they cook, they soften|
- To make the frangipane, cream the butter and sugar in a bowl. Gradually add the eggs. Finally, blend in the ground almonds and flour.
|adding the ground almonds and flour ..|
|nice and sticky frangipane|
- Cover the apples with the frangipane mix and top with the flaked almonds and a little sugar. It’s best to do this when the frangipane has just been made so that it spreads easily.
|spread the frangipane mix over the apples and|
then sprinkle the flaked almonds on top
|add those little hearts,sprinkle with sugar, and there you are:|
ready to bake in the pre-heated oven
- Bake for 45-50 mins until golden brown. Allow to cool and serve with pouring cream.
|a delicious slice of moist apple and almond tart – if you can serve it warm from the|
oven, it’s perfect!