03 June 2011

Besting Wegman's

I haven't posted anything delicious in a good while and since  my original intent was to combine design and living and food, I have clearly been remiss.

Random berry tart, not mine or Wegman's
Recently, I sampled a triple berry almond tart at Wegman's grocery and was sorely disappointed.
For those of you unfamiliar with the store, it is a food lover's fantasy but not in an overpriced, gourmet store way. The prices on everyday things are good and the eating areas and variety make it a marvelous place to shop. Most things there are very good as far as grocery bakeries go.
My oldest daughter requested the chocolate dome for her birthday and I had my doubts but it was fantastic so I had high hopes for the tart.
The tart was doughy (is that a word?!) and bland so I vowed to do one better.

I started with the James Beard version of a Pate Sucre (sweet dough) using his food processor method.
8 Tblsp. or 1 stick butter FROZEN cut in small pieces.
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups flour
1 Tblsp. lemon juice
1 egg
2 Tblsp. sugar

Put butter, salt, sugar, and flour in the food processor and pulse 8 - 10 times until mixture is in even, pea- size pieces. Add egg and lemon juice and blend again briefly.
Turn out onto a large sheet of waxed paper or plastic wrap and gather the dough into a ball. Wrap it and chill it for about 10 minutes, until cold but still malleable.
This recipe is enough for two crusts. It can be frozen for up to 4 weeks.
Divide dough in half and  and roll out to fit a tart or pie plate. I made one and froze the other dough ball for later.
Prick the bottom all over with a fork and bake unfilled ( called blind baking) for 14-16 minutes at 425 degrees.

This is where I decided to make things up as I went along.
I used an 8 ounce can of almond paste and rolled it out to about  a quarter of an inch thick. No easy feat. The purpose was to cover the bottom of the crust with a layer of almond paste. I ended up doing a few patch jobs around the edge to get an even layer. This can be done directly after the blind bake or can wait a little while, but who wants to wait?

In a bowl, mix 1/4 cup sugar, 3 Tblsp. flour and a 16 ounce bag of frozen mixed berries. I also added 2 teaspoons of rosewater but it can be left out altogether if you don't have it.
Put the berry mixture on top of the almond paste layer and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Mine had a bad case of ugly but it was a winner at my house.

1 comment:

  1. Kerry yum and what an artful presentation. Maybe you should sell these Berry tarts at Wegman's!

    Art by Karena

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