Plum & Perimmon Tarts with Sweet Vanilla Crème Fraîche and Lemon Zest
These are, to me, the perfect little pastries. They're delicate and flavorfully interesting, but not all dolled-up and entering the "too-good-to-eat" territory. They're messy and decadent, just like a pastry should be.
(Also, today is my birthday. So happy birthday to me with these tiny pastry birthday cakes.)
5 ripe purple plums
3 ripe persimmons (USE FUYU; DO NOT USE HACHIYA)
½ cup dark brown sugar, plus 1 tbsp. separate
Juice squeezed from one large lemon
2 tsp. vanilla extract, plus 1 tsp. separate
1 tsp. nutmeg, plus 1 tsp. separate
Dash of cinnamon
Zest from one large lemon
1 small container of crème fraiche
1 sheet of Puff Pastry dough
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Dice the plums and persimmons into bite sized pieces. Keep the skin on the plums, remove the skin from the persimmons.
Over medium heat, in a small pot, throw together the plums, persimmons, brown sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and nutmeg. Stir. Let simmer until the fruit is soft and the juice from the plums has taken over most of the pot; about 10 minutes.
Unroll the sheet of unthawed puff pastry dough. (I use Trader Joe’s when in season) Slice into small squares, about 3in x 3in.
In a greased muffin tin, place the squares into the tin while slightly folding up the 4 points of each square. Note: You are not connecting the points together, You are allowing the dough to rise in the center.
Place the muffin tin(s) in the oven and bake for about 5 minutes. When lightly toasted and not yet puffed up, remove from oven. While still hot, place spoonfuls of the plum and persimmon mixture in the center of each slightly risen square.
Place the muffin tin(s) back in the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes. When the dough has finished rising and each pastry is a darker shade of toasty brown, remove from oven. Let cool for 5 minutes to put the final touches onto each pastry.
In a small mixing bowl, add the crème fraiche, the additional brown sugar, vanilla, nutmeg, as well as the cinnamon. Blend until smooth. Put in fridge for 5 minutes.
Remove the tarts from the muffin tin(s) to a serving plate or platter.
When ready, place neat spoonfuls of the sweet crème fraiche overtop of the plum tarts.
After each tart has a dollop of crème fraiche, take a small grinder and shave the lemon over the plate of tarts to add a final dusting of lemon zest. Be sure to rotate the lemon so that you are not shaving the white part of the lemon rind overtop.
Enjoy immediately! Or let stand for up to 3 hours. The puff pastry will lose it’s crunch if stored in the fridge or in an air-tight container, so be wary of their pastry life.