Time really is a luxury these days. It’s rich to even notice when I’m too busy and to be able to contrast it with my more free-wheeling moments, but damned if I ain’t truly swamped. When my folks came out to visit a few weeks ago, my dad set about installing a set of gorgeous shelves in our sweet little kitchen. I thought I’d fill them up right quick with kitchen paraphernalia, but they’re stocked with nary a thing as I’ve hardly stepped foot in that bad boy since moving to Baltimore. Well, unless you count traversing the kitchen on the way to the back porch for too many 4:00 a.m.-beers and Spray Tan cocktails.*
This tart, then, is sort of a time suck miracle, borne primarily of the guilt of buying way too damn much produce at the farmers market that I found en route to Woodberry. These yellow egg plums—firm, fleshy, and sweet—sat sad on the counter next to a few wilting white peaches before I eventually mustered the stomach to be in My Kitchen on a rare day off from The Kitchen. And so I took a page from Yossy’s book, and cobbled the thing together as quickly as possible—press-in shortbread crust, no macerating, no chilling, a few ground hazelnuts because they’re the best—and there you have it. A surprisingly quick, easy, and downright good summer dessert: the barely sweetened fruit sings above the hazelnuts, and the corn flour tart shell is like one big salty-sweet cookie. Get busy or don’t, but definitely make this when you’re looking for an easy way to showcase that summer stone fruit.
*Ahem: coined by my sister in honor of my fantastic roommate, the Spray Tan is tequila, lime, and pompelmo, usually accompanied by a watermelon snack. Get it.
Stone Fruit Tart
Adapted from Apt. 2B Baking Co.
For the crust
4 ounces corn flour (or very fine cornmeal)
4 ounces all purpose flour
1.75 ounces sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 ounces butter, melted and cooled
1 egg yolk
1. In a medium bowl, stir the flours, sugar, salt and lime zest. Make a well in the center of the mixture and add in the olive oil, butter and egg yolk. Stir gently to combine.
2. Turn the dough out into a 10-inch removable bottom tart pan and pat it evenly on the bottom and up the sides. Pop into the fridge while you prepare the filling.
For the Filling
2.5 pounds plums or stone fruit of your choosing
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Scant 1/4 cup toasted hazelnuts
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons demerara sugar, divided
1 tablespoon butter, cut into small pieces
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast hazelnuts on a baking sheet for eight to ten minutes until the skins are darkened. Wrap them with a clean kitchen towel, let steam for a couple of minutes, then rub together to remove the skins. Add the nuts and 1/4-cup sugar to your food processor, and pulse until nuts are very finely ground. Set aside.
2. Turn oven up to 450 degrees F, and quarter your pit fruit while you wait for the oven to heat. Spread the ground nuts evenly over the bottom of your corn flour crust, and arrange plums and peaches evenly on top, in three, tight rings. Top the fruit with remaining two tablespoons of sugar and dot with the butter. Slide tart onto a cookie sheet, and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until crust is deep golden and fruit is baked and bubbling. This tart is best if eaten within a day or two.