1448

Prune and Armagnac tarts

  • makes 12
  • Easy

Rich and indulgent prune tarts with a crisp pastry base and a boozy filling. This is a great grown-up dessert for a smart dinner party and can be made ahead and served at room temperature with a good dollop of cream or creme friache.

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Ingredients

  • ready-to-eat pitted prunes 12 (such as Agen)
  • Armagnac or other brandy 3 tbsp
  • ready-made puff pastr y 500g
  • free-range eggs 2, plus 2 yolks
  • caster sugar 50g
  • vanilla pod ½, split lengthways and seeds scraped out
  • single cream  300 ml pot
  • icing sugar

Method

  • Step 1

    Put the prunes in a bowl and pour over the armagnac. Leave to steep for 2-3 hours.

  • Step 2

    Heat the oven to 220c/fan 200c/gas 7. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry into a rectangle 45 × 35cm. Use a cutter to cut the pastry into 12 × 10cm rounds. Press the rounds firmly into a deep 12-hole cake or muffin tin.

  • Step 3

    Put small pieces of crumpled baking parchment inside each pastry case and fill with ceramic baking beans, making sure each mould is well packed (dried chickpeas also work well). Bake for 22-25 minutes until the edges are puffed up and golden. Remove the baking beans and parchment. Press down any risen centres and set aside without removing from the tins. Reduce the oven temperature to 180c/fan 160c/gas 4.

  • Step 4

    Lightly whisk the eggs, yolks, 50g of the sugar and the vanilla seeds. Stir in the cream and pour into a jug.

  • Step 5

    Drain the prunes. Half fill each tartlet with vanilla cream, add a prune, then pour more vanilla cream around it to fill each pastry case. Return to the oven and cook for 15 minutes or until the custard is set on the outside – it should still wobble in the centre but will continue to cook when removed from the oven. Set aside to cool.

  • Step 6

    Dust with icing sugar before going over with the blowtorch until caramelised.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 297
  • Carbs 31.2g
  • Protein 5.2g
  • Fat 16.7g
  • Salt 0.39g
  • Saturates 7.3g
  • Fibre 1.2g
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