Frangipane sounds fancy, but it's just ground almonds held together with a bit of butter, eggs, and sugar. Classic frangipane calls for blanched almonds which will yield a more lightly colored tart, but I don't mind the rustic look of these guys. In the fall and winter, feel free to sub pears, apples, or quince for the berries. —Yossy Arefi
six 4-inch tartlets or one 10-inch tart
1 1/2 cups
cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
In the bowl of a food processor or with a pastry blender, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the butter is the size of small peas. Add the yolk and pulse until it is evenly distributed. Pulse in the cold water until the dough starts to hold together.
Lightly butter your tart pan or pans and gently press the dough into the pan. Make sure to evenly coat the bottom and sides. You may have a bit of extra dough; save it just in case you have to repair any cracks later on. Freeze the tart shell(s) for 30 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 375° F and bake the tart shell (no need for pie weights) until it is lightly golden. If the shell puffs up while baking, carefully use an offset spatula to gently press them back into the pans. Repair any cracks that may have formed with your leftover dough. Cool the shell on a rack while you prepare the rest of the tart.
In the bowl of the food processor, combine the butter and sugar and pulse until smooth. Add the almonds and blend until well combined. Add the flour and cornstarch followed by the egg and egg white and finally the vanilla extract and salt. Mix until just combined.
To assemble and bake: Preheat the oven to 350º F. Spread the frangipane into the cooled tart shell or shells, it should come up just below the edge. Depending on the height of your tart shells, you may have a couple of spoonfuls of frangipane left over. Decorate the top of each tartlet or tart with a couple of berries or slices of plum arranged in a decorative pattern.
Place the tart or tartlets on a baking sheet and bake until the crust and frangipane are golden and set, 20 to 30 minutes for tartlets and 45 to 50 minutes for a large tart. Cool on a wire rack and dust with confectioner's sugar just before serving.
Yossy Arefi is a photographer and stylist with a passion for food. During her stint working in restaurant kitchens, Yossy started the blog Apt. 2B Baking Co. where, with her trusty Pentax film camera, she photographs and writes about seasonal desserts and preserves. She currently lives in Brooklyn but will always love her native city of Seattle. Follow her work at apt2bbakingco.blogspot.com & yossyarefi.com.