plum and almond tart

i was struck by a thought recently, as i reached for yet another almond, is there an excess of nut-related, specifically almond-related, material on this site? i was worried that perhaps the repetition, other than getting boring, might indicate a lack of imagination. but according to nietzsches aphorism, ‘if one has character one also has ones typical experience which recurs again and again’; mine therefore, is the almond. and this tart has nothing to do with the mundane. this tart, in all its simplicity is truly world shattering. and i know because everyone who laid teeth to it has said as much. its the tart that makes love and makes friends. its the best advice you can get, in any situation. it will truly blow your hair back.


500g plums (preferably dark skinned but whatever you can get in your ill-seasoned hemisphere)

300g butter

300g sugar

300g ground almonds

3 large organic eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 quantity shortcrust pastry

preheat the oven to 150 degrees. then prepare your plums. cut in half and remove the stones…(they dont go down well…especially if you intend on offloading this tart to an old dithering man – it will cause all kinds of unnecessary hassles)

then in a bowl beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

then add the ground almonds and mix to combine. and finally add the eggs one at a time and beat.

pour the almond filling into the pre-baked tart shell and smooth over. (the mixture this recipe makes is too much for the tart. i realise i should have adjusted the quantities accordingly but a low self estimation makes me wary about doing such things and makes me think the excess was the fault of some mistake i made…but i can tell you with absolute confidence that if it seems like you have too much, dont try fit it all on. you will only end up with an buttery-sugary explosion inside your oven. or, if you are, like myself, wracked with self-doubt and persist in using it all because, after all, “why would the recipe lie”, then at least put a tray at the bottom of the oven onto which mess can safely fall.)

finally, arrange your plums, cut-side up however you wish.

put this into an oven for 45 minutes. (or up to two hours if it all goes plum shaped). remove and cool on a wire rack. there arent many guarantees here. you have to hope and pray it all goes according to the river cafe’s divine plan. but when it does there will be euphoria on the palate, people will flip their beaks…there may even be a few tears of elation. so try it…i urge you.


5 Responses to “plum and almond tart”

  1. 1 Matthieu April 21, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    — spoiler alert —
    or as the chef says, widget alert, this tart was fantastics, even the plums, those things what grow on trees, tasted divine. i do believe we be making some other plum type pastry fancy next.

  2. 2 jo April 22, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    hi everybody i’m so sorry for my incommunique.

    i’m sure you’ll all be happy to know i’m home- gma you already know this.

    please excuse me while i run to the store to pick up some almonds to make this.

    also- i know you made the lemon tartlets snow- i was wondering if you could please let me in on your quintessential lemon tart recipe?

    M- thank you for the spoiler- you’ve whet my palatte in the most platonic way.

    i love you everyone!

  3. 3 schlepseleh April 23, 2010 at 12:32 am

    thank you m for that endorsement. im not sure i just spelt your name correctly. that would be a bit embarrassing. snow, thats an excellent question and im glad you asked it. the river cafe says butter. a few other reputable sources say cream. the river cafe is always right. but i prefer cream. and everytime i stop to think about this perennial question, the internal conflict makes me feel sick. or maybe that ache is just the product of raw cookie dough. so, as they say in paris, bref: i dont know. theres only so much i know snow, im just one man.

  4. 4 Matthieu April 23, 2010 at 12:43 am

    ‘m’, as you say, is the correct spelling – well done. (this comment was bought to you by punctuation though this bracketed sentence was not which is a shame cos it could probably do with a bit here and there but then why add that when theres no capitalisation on letters)

  5. 5 schlepseleh April 23, 2010 at 1:09 am

    letter decapitalisation is an aesthetic decision on the part of the auteur and her editorial design team. the same people who brought you such posts as tarte tatin (view from above) and who designed chestnuts, mushrooms and thyme – an autumnal odyssey. if you have any further comments can you please redirect them to the appropriate editorial body, and if you have nice eyes can you please do likewise.

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