Peach tart with vanilla pastry

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This peach tart with vanilla pastry would work equally well with nectarines, apricots, fresh figs.  The peaches should be ripe enough to be juicy but not collapsing.  With the little tarts I found the best way to get a crispy bottom was to put them in the oven at a slightly higher temperature and turn oven down halfway through baking preventing the peaches from burning.

Make the pastry, chill it before rolling out, step-by-step instructions   here

Remember to add the lovely vanilla paste, just look at those little black specks of seeds in the pastry.

Roll out the pastry thinly.  Decide if you’re making large tarts or individual ones.

If making larger ones use the tin as a cutter.

Press down really hard to make sure the pastry is cut through.  For the individual ones use a super large cookie cutter or look around the house for a little bowl with the right circumference.  Feel free to cut a square shape.

Use a spatula to lift the pastry gently.

Start taking away the pastry around the circles.

If you find the markings are not cut all the way through, the best way to deal with it is by pulling away the outside pastry…

Use the spatula to gently loosen the pastry from the surface.

Gently place it on a baking sheet lined with baking paper (not greaseproof paper).

Put in the fridge while preparing the fruit.

Cut the peach into 8 segments.  Some peaches will easily release the segments without a fuss by a little jiggle with the knife.

To remove the skin if they’re ripe it will peel off easily…

Now you need to cut each segment into half.

Brush the edges of the pastry with a beaten egg, it will give the pastry a nice colour.  Arrange the slices on the pastry.  Halfway through baking, turn the tart around in the oven to bake evenly.

Glaze to give a shine.  A classic way is to brush with a little diluted sieved warmed jam such as apricot flavour because it will not colour the fruit and over-power the flavour peaches.  You might have the matching jam to the tart which empathises the flavour.

If you don’t have jam, here’s a good way to give the tart a pretty finish.

While the tart is warm using a mini sieve dust some icing sugar over the tart, use blow torch, you can burn the edges slightly…in an artistic sort of way, here and there.

If you’re making the small individual tarts and they’re so cute, only bake 4 at a time in the oven otherwise they produce too much steam and won’t let the pastry crisp up.

When no one is looking…eat one while warm.  I don’t even need a plate for them.

 

Peach tart with vanilla pastry
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Large 2 tarts x 20 cm (8 inches) each, need 2 peaches per tart. Makes 8 small tarts x 10 cm (4 inches) with ½ peach per tart. Pre-heat the oven to 190˚C Fan / 390˚F / gas 6.
Ingredients
Vanilla pastry
  • 250g plain flour
  • 125g salted butter, cut into small cubes (if unsalted add large pinch salt)
  • 25g or 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1½ teaspoon of vanilla paste or 1 teaspoon of vanilla pure extract
  • 3 – 4 tablespoons of milk or water
Tarts
  • 4 ripe peaches
  • 1 whole egg, beaten
  • icing sugar for dusting
Instructions
Vanilla Pastry
  1. Make the pastry and rest it. See How to make shortcrust pastry on the site for details. Roll pastry out thinly and cut it to the tart sizes desired. Put the tarts on top of baking sheets that have been lined with baking paper (not greaseproof) and put them in the fridge again while preparing the peaches.
Tarts
  1. Cut the peaches as above. Brush the edges of the pastry with the egg, and arrange the peaches overlapping on top of the pastries.
  2. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 10 minutes.
  3. After 10 minutes turn the tart around to bake evenly, and turn the oven temperature down to 160˚C Fan / 350˚F / gas 4 and bake for another 10-15 minutes.
  4. While the pastries are warm sieve the icing sugar over the tarts using a mini sieve over a good height.