Saturday, January 12, 2008

Apricot Tartlets

This past summer my neighbor knocked on my door and gave me a bag FULL of apricots that she said was from her backyard tree. I thanked her, closed my door and thought, "what the hell am I going to do with all these apricots?" And especially, since I don't even like apricots. But true to form, I started surfing online and came across this recipe. Made it and was a successful hit! BF loved it, and I even made another batch for my folks. I even tasted one and have to admit they were good. ENJOY!

Apricot Tartlets
Adapted from Make Life Sweeter!

2 cups flour3
Tbsp sugar
5 oz cold butter, chopped
2-3 Ttbsp iced water

Process the flour, sugar and butter in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. While the motor is running, add enough iced water to form a smooth dough and process until just combined. Knead the dough lightly, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

1 ¼ cup whole blanched almonds
½ cup butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
2 medium eggs
6 large fresh apricots, halved, stoned, then cut into 10 wedges
4 Tbsp apricot jam
2 tbs water

Preheat the oven to 350*F. Place twelve 2 ½ in-diameter rings onto 2 baking sheets. Divide the dough into 12 pieces. Thinly roll out each piece (between no-stick baking paper) to line the metal rings. Trim the top, prick the bases and chill for 10 minutes. Line each pastry with non-stick baking paper or aluminium foil and fill with baking beans or dried beans. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the paper with the beans. Bake the pastries for a further 5 minutes or until the bases are pale brown and dry.

Lightly toast the almonds in a heavy-based pan for 1-2 minutes until they begin to release their aroma. Cool the nuts slightly, then process them in a food processor until finely ground. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the almonds. Gradually beat in the eggs.

Reduce the oven to 325*F. Spread 3-4 tbs filling into the base of each tartlet. Press apricot wedges into the mixture. Bake the tartlets for 25-30 minutes until the filling is just set and the fruit is starting to caramelize at the tips.

Heat the jam with the water and pass it through a sieve. Allow the tarlets to cool for 1-2 minutes before brushing the glaze on the fruit, filling and pastry edge. Allow to cool before serving.

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