Sunday, 4 May 2014

Rhubarb Frangipane Tart

One of the nicest things about Spring is harvesting our home grown rhubarb, but this doesn't seem to be a good year; I think it's because it was a relatively mild winter, with no prolonged cold periods. Rhubarb definitely benefits from being cold during it's dormant period. Our apple trees have suffered from the strange spring weather too - only one had a good quantity of blossom, and one hasn't had any at all. Who says Britain has a reliable climate?

This recipe was devised mainly as a way of making a small amount of rhubarb go a long way, but also as my entry to this month's Tea Time Treats challenge, which is for open top tarts, pies and quiches.

I managed to take about 400g of rhubarb from our plants, without completely denuding any of them. Hopefully there will be more to harvest in the future, but the crowns aren't producing as many new leaves as in other years. I cooked the chopped rhubarb with 100g of sugar until most of the liquid had been driven off and it was reduced to a thick jam-like purée. This was spread into the base of a deep 20cm(8") diameter tart dish lined with shortcrust pastry - no need to blind-bake the pastry case for this recipe.

The frangipane topping was made from 100g each of ground almonds, slightly salted butter (softened) and golden caster sugar, 2 large eggs, half a teaspoon baking powder and a few drops of almond extract. These ingredients were just beaten together until light and fluffy, then spread carefully on top of the rhubarb, making sure to seal the mixture around the edge where it joined the pastry.  A few flaked almonds were scattered over the surface, then the tart was baked at 200C for 15 minutes. The oven temperature was then lowered to 180C and baking continued until the frangipane was golden and firm - the total baking time was about 40 minutes.

This is a dessert best eaten at room temperature. The rhubarb and almond flavours complimented each other well and the frangipane had a good chewy texture, contrasting with the crisp pastry and sticky rhubarb purée.

Tea Time Treats
Tea Time Treats is a baking challenge co-hosted by Karen from Lavender and Lovage and  Jane from The Hedgecombers. Each month we are invited to produce something suitable for a tea time spread, following the theme set by that month's host. This month's theme of open tarts, pies and quiches was set by Jane, who will post a round up of entries at the end of the month.

10 comments:

Alicia Foodycat said...

Looks very nice! We've also had hardly any apple or pear blossom.

belleau kitchen said...

oh yes please!... I do love anything frangipane and as I look out the cottage window I can see my neighbours rhubarb is just ripe for the stealing... ;0)

Kate@whatkatebaked said...

My parents garden (which I raid each year for all sorts of yummy seasonal goodies!) seemed to have quite a crop of rhubarb this year but they do live on the cold, wet West coast of Wales!! Lovely combination of almond and rhubarb

figjamandlimecordial.com said...

Suelle, I think you've managed to explain why both apples and rhubarb doesn't seem to want to grow in our garden. We never get frosts. Our rhubarb crowns made an effort for the first couple of years, then just died off. And even though we bought a red variety, it only ever grew green. I'm sure making a delicious tart like this from homegrown rhubarb would be incredibly satisfying! :)

Katie said...

That looks fabulous! A new take on bakewell tart. Love almond with anything.

snowy said...

What a great way of using rhubarb. It looks delicious. Ours isn't doing very well this year either, so haven't picked any yet.

Phil in the Kitchen said...

I love frangipane tarts and rhubarb is an excellent addition. All my recent efforts to grow rhubarb have been disastrous so I'm envious of any crop at all. Sad to hear about the lack of apple blossom, especially after such a good crop last year for most people.

silvermoonnz said...

I live in NZ and our Rhubarb produces 12 months a year, must be a slightly different breed!

Suelle said...

That's interesting to know, silvermoonnz, particularly as Celia (figjamandlimecordial) can't grow any in Australia. I'm surprised the plants don't need a rest period to regenerate.

Jane Sarchet said...

I didn't think our rhubarb was kicking out as much as usual this year, although I do seem to be robbing it on a frequent basis :)
Lovely looking tart, thank you so much for finding the time to enter it in this months Tea Time Treats!
Janie x