Plum Tart with Brown Sugar Mascarpone Cream and Walnuts

Plum Tart

While everyone around the country seems to be shouting FALL from the rooftops, I’m trying as hard as I can toΒ  hang onto summer. Our warm season starts a month later than everyone else so I’m less eager to see it go. I’m OK with a bit cooler temps, sure, but not fall; not yet. We’re just now getting the best of summers crop of tomatoes, corn, peaches and plums and I’m not about to go into harvest mode. I want the simplest dishes; fresh tomatoes dressed only with salt, olive oil and maybe a bit of basil, corn from the grill slathered with the most amazing chile butter (coming soon!), peaches often eaten just standing over the sink and plums, gorgeous little orbs that I like fine from my hand but I have learned to LOVE cooked into a tart or pie.

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Last Sunday I went to a local farmers market and I happened to time it just right. Later than I would have liked, it turned out to be perfect as the stand I went up to first was handing out bags with the offer of $10 to fill them up. No problem. I did just that! Poblano peppers,eggplant, zucchini and patty pan squash, tomatoes and potatoes, pears and pluots. I was looking for plums but these pluots were perfect. Firm but ripe and a bit less sweet than a plum, I thought they would be perfect for a tart I wanted to make using up the rest of the puff pastry I had in the fridge.

What is a pluot you say? Well, many think they are half plum and half apricot but that combination is actually called a plumcot. Pluots are the result of a fellow named Zaiger crossbreeding plumcots with plums; resulting in a fruit that is generally 60-75% plum and the remainder apricot. As the Zaigers began backcrossing plumcots with plums to create more complex hybrids (with varying ratios of plum to apricot), they wanted to market them with a different nameβ€”one that wouldn’t be tarnished by the notoriety of plumcots. Thus they trademarked the name pluot (pronounced plew-ott) in 1990. (They renewed the trademark in 2007.)

Plum Tart with Brown Sugar Mascarpone Cream and Walnuts | Creative-Culinary.com

They were sweet but not TOO sweet and had a beautiful color; just perfect, well, except for one thing. As long as someone is going to invest time in breeding fruit, why on earth they don’t make them cling-free is beyond me. The first half pulled off the pit relatively easily but I had to do surgery with a small paring knife to remove it from the second half of the fruit. I’m certain there was a GRR or two said during that process. Still, not a biggy and I soon had my fruit pitted and quartered. I like doing very little to fruit that is this fresh in the summer, so a short maceration in some orange liqueur and orange zest and we were good to go.

I normally use mascarpone cheese when I want to seal a crust that I’m going to fill with fresh fruit but this time around it was baked for just a bit with the pluots. Just enough of a filling element to hold the pluots in place without being so much that it masked their fantastic flavor. I did have one little hiccup. I decided to blind bake the puff pastry as I didn’t want to cook the fruit or cheese for the time it would take to bake. Um, hello big domed thing in my oven (doggone that’s what I should have gotten a photo of!). SO glad I looked before it had become too crispy. Doing the same thing? I had to remove it from the oven three times and prick it with a fork to let the air escape. Now if I could find a dessert to make with that big dome; I will tellΒ  you it was pretty spectacular looking! I think you could use any stone fruit for this tart or a combination even. Just make sure it’s ready and ripe; there is not a lot of cooking; it’s all about the fruit being fresh, ripe and fabulous!

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tart-panI’ve included a photo of my ‘fix’ because I didn’t have a tart pan; just folded some foil a couple of times to create a new edge; folded the dough too so it would be sturdy enough to stand up and it seems to work fine. The tart pan is easier, I can not deny. πŸ™‚

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36 Comments

  1. Oh my goodness, this tart is simply gorgeous! I love fall weather and food, but I can’t feel the fall mood yet, because it is so stinkin’ hot where I am still. We get our hottest weather in September and October, so I know it’ll be awhile before it really feels like fall to me. But at least I can console myself with this tart!

    1. I love it but not when it’s still summer…we’ve had a couple of glorious late summer days and I just want to enjoy them and the gorgeous fruits that come with them. I get nowhere near as excited about pumpkin. πŸ™‚

  2. Hi Barb!! Ooooh…. does that look good! I LOVE fruit tarts during the summer and I LOVE Pluots – I think they just might be my favorite fruit!!! Was so fun hanging out with you last weekend!!!

    1. I had never happened on a pluot before and now that they’re in my radar…boy did I love them! Fun hanging with you too; now we have ‘our’ joint for next time!

    1. Best farmers market I’ve been to; so many here are really boutique markets that finding real produce from real farmers is impossible. But they’ve got bison and fresh goat cheese…which is good but not so much when I want tomatoes! πŸ™‚

    1. It’s not an absolute…just sub some orange juice in a pinch. Just helps to macerate them a bit and should NEVER stop a tart. πŸ™‚

  3. Ha! I totally got a visual of your gigantic domed puff pastry crust πŸ™‚ Too funny! I’ve had that happen before as well. Most recently, when I made that peach blueberry tart. This tart is absolutely stunning! Love the mascapone with the brown sugar, the fresh pluots (and the history lesson! I had no idea) and that crunch from the walnuts. This sounds like something I must make before fall really does arrive. As much as I love autumn, I’m holding onto summer just a bit longer and this will help.

  4. Oh dear, I am starting to read sounds of despair on a number of northern hemisphere blogs… sounds like no one wants to let go of summer! Well, I am ready for some warmth… love your recipe!

    1. You can have warmth; I’m just not quite ready for the season that leads to winter. I love fall too but boy it seems short lived before the snow comes to us here in Colorado.

    1. Thank you Laura…lucky that mascarpone got in there; I could have finished it with a spoon. πŸ™‚

  5. You will be ready for your new kitchen, though I must admit I am amazed at what you turn out now! I love plum tarts and with the mascarpone, who can resist? But I would also love to know which farmer’s market and what was the magical time? πŸ™‚

    1. Parker has one on Sunday that is over at 1:30pm…so I’m thinking around 1ish is when they start to do that to get rid of stuff instead of taking it back with them.

  6. I’ve never tried a pluot and will keep my eyes open for them in the coming weeks. I love puff pastry for desserts like this that come together quickly and can work with many different fruits. Love your addition of the mascarpone cream!

    1. They are a bit less sweet; that’s my take on them but still; the no peeling business for plum desserts is nice. Mascarpone is good with everything isn’t it?

    1. Good one…and exactly how I feel. Cause with fall comes winter and since I’m not a skier I simply suffer through it waiting for our beautiful summer.

  7. I’m lazy, so I prefer cling-free fruit too. I’ve read it’s a bit less sweet than fruit with clingstones, but I’ve never been able to discern much, if any, difference. And who doesn’t eat peaches standing over the kitchen sink? πŸ˜‰ Lovely recipe, and we have some mascarpone in the refrigerator! Great light in your photos, too.

    1. Me either John…except for the annoyance part! Funny about that light. Weary of trekking to daughter’s for my photos I set something on the kitchen table where I’m staying. Too bright so scrambled for fabric, formica (YES) table so had to find something to cover it…OY OY OY…can not WAIT to have my own place back again; this photo business is exhausting! πŸ™‚

    1. There not prolific that’s for sure; I’m not sure I’ve ever seen them in a grocery store but that’s just one reason I just love farmers markets. I did not know of plumcots; I had always thought pluots were a 50-50 combination of plums and apricots but thought I should verify and that’s when I was schooled in the difference.

  8. What a beautiful dessert. The fruit sounds divine. Isn’t it something how many wonderful foods there are for us nowadays. You’ve hit it out of the park with this one. And, by the way, I’d say you get an A+ for creativity in your “fix” for the tart pan. Great thinking!

    1. Thanks Adri; every day is a challenge working in someone else kitchen; particularly a kitchen that is not equipped with the supplies I’m used to. I’m hoping one upshot will be that when I finally get settled in my own home again that everything will seem SUPER easy!

  9. Oh boy do I love this! I adore plum tarts and I love using mascarpone for filling and you did both! And in puff pastry! Gotta do this! I think your rectangle came out just perfect as did all of your finagling with baking times, leaving us with the perfect recipe.
    Plums are just coming out in full force on our market and since I have the mascarpone in the fridge (when don’t I?) all I need to do is make some puff pastry: this is the kind of tart I love the best!

    1. I should have started a new blog for the time I’m living here. ‘How to bake in a non-baking kitchen.’ Finagling R Us!

  10. This looks so good, really wish I had some right now! Love the brown sugar mascarpone on top! I’ve never had either a plumcot or pluot, sadly. Your $10 bag contents were fabulous, what good timing that was!

  11. Thanks for setting me straight about the pluot. Until this morning I thought that it was a plum/apricot mix. It certainly makes sense though, because I have always thought that they looked more plum than apricot. This tart is gorgeous! I wish I had a piece with my morning coffee.

    1. I thought the same so I did some fact checking first; heck I’ve never even heard of a plumcot! I hid some; come on over!

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