Originally I thought I needed a tart pan to make a tart. But good heavens, how could I say no to what these little heart shaped pans could produce? I love how adorable they turned out - the taste was equally as wonderful. (Thanks Sariah for running over so quickly with these cute little pans!)
While searching for apricot recipes this week, I was able to further explore such a wonderful website: Pastry Studio. I'm convinced this lady is the apricot queen. She has so many amazing recipes, and each one I've tried has been a complete success. This one included :)
I loved how the tarts included cornmeal - giving them that familiar cornbread taste. It was met perfectly with the sunset-colored apricot center - gooey, but not gummy. They weren't very sweet, and I knew this would be the case. So in the middle of the recipe where you're supposed to drain the apricot compote, I saved the drippings, and made a sweet glaze to drizzle over the tarts after they popped out of the oven. It really hit the spot, and was a perfect compliment to the overall crumbly texture and light taste of the tarts.
Apricot Cornmeal Crumb Tarts with Apricot Compote Glaze
8 fresh ripe apricots (I used about 20 mini-apricots)
1/4 C water
1/4 C + 2 T sugar
1/2 vanilla bean (I used a little under a tablespoon of extract)
1/2 t cinnamon
2 C flour
1/2 C + 2 T fine cornmeal
3/4 C sugar
1/4 t + 1/8 t salt
1 1/2 sticks cold butter, cut into small cubes
3 egg yolks
1/4 C + 2 T sour cream
Apricot Compote Glaze:
1 C powdered sugar
drippings from apricot preserves (see directions below)
Clean apricots, remove pits (watch out for little bugs if you picked apricots fresh!), and cut apricots in half - set aside. Combine water and sugar together and bring to a simmer. Add vanilla to syrup and stir. Add in apricots and cinnamon. Lower heat and simmer until apricots start to look jammy, but hold their shape. take off heat and pour through a strainer placed over a bowl to drain. Save the drained juices for your glaze!
Preheat oven to 350
Whisk together dry ingredients - flour, cornmeal, sugar and salt in a food processor. Toss in butter pieces and pulse until butter breaks up (don't overmix). In a separate small bowl, mix together yolks and sour cream. Don't overmix, but mix until it's combining together, but still looks pretty crumbly. Pour into a large bowl and toss gently with your clean hands.
Pour about 2/3 of the dough crumbles into a 9'' tart pan (I used 4 heart-shaped mini cake pans, and 4 shallow white ramekins). Gently crumble and even layer to the edges of pan(s) and press lightly without smashing down. If using a tart pan, cover the bottom of the pan completely so there's no holes for leaking. Layer on the apricots in the center, but leave room around the edges. Sprinkle the remaining dough crumble over the top of the apricots, spreading some to the edges to form a border.
Place tart(s) on a cookie sheet and bake for about 35 minutes (I cooked mine in 2 batches of 4 ramekins/pans each, and they were done in about 20-25 minutes). Cool completely before removing from pans to serve.
While baking, prepare glaze. Whisk powdered sugar vigorously with the apricot compote/syrup drippings. Drizzle over tarts before serving.
recipe source: Pastry Studio