Life Eat & Drink Dish of the day: Cherry and pistachio tart

Dish of the day: Cherry and pistachio tart

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Cherry and pistachio tart

Serves 8-10
You will need a cherry pitter for this special tart that I make in the early summer months. The pastry base can be made in advance. If you need to peel the pistachios, drop them in boiling water for 20 seconds, then drain and peel them.

  • 1 quantity Sweet Pastry (see below)
  • 400 g (14 oz) cherries, pitted
  • 60 g (2 oz) raw peeled pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons walnut or olive oil
  • 115 g (4 oz/1 ∕2 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1∕2 vanilla pod, split lengthwise
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/1∕2 cup) cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon brandy, Kirsch or Drambuie (optional)
  • 70 g (21∕2 oz) smooth apricot jam, warmed

Preheat the oven to 220°C. Grease a 25 cm loose-based flan tin.
Briefly knead the pastry to soften it, then roll it out on a floured surface to a thickness of 3 mm. Gently wrap the pastry around the rolling pin and lay it over the prepared tin. Line the tin with the pastry and trim the edges. Prick the base of the pastry with a fork.
Line the pastry with foil and fill with uncooked rice or dried beans. Bake the pastry for 10 minutes, then carefully remove the foil and its contents and cook for another 2–5 minutes or until the pastry is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and place the flan tin on a baking tray.
Arrange the cherries on top of the pastry.
Using a food processor, blend the pistachios and oil into a rough paste.
Combine the sugar and vanilla pod in a bowl and mix for 1 minute. Stir in the pistachio paste, cream, eggs and brandy, if using, until well combined. Discard the vanilla pod, then pour the mixture over the cherries.
Place the tart in the oven, reduce the heat to 150°C and bake for 25 minutes. Set aside to cool, then brush the top with apricot jam. Remove from the tin and serve warm.

Sweet Pastry
Makes 550 g

  • 125 g (4 oz) sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • seeds of 1 ∕2 vanilla pod
  • 250 g (9 oz/12 ∕3 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 125 g (4 oz) butter, cut into small cubes

Place the sugar, egg and vanilla seeds in a small bowl and
whisk well.
Place the flour in the bowl of an electric beater. Add the cubed butter and beat until crumbly. Beat in the egg mixture until the pastry is well combined.
Alternatively, to make the pastry by hand, place the flour in a bowl and use your fingertips to rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre.
Add the egg mixture and use your fingertips to mix into a soft dough. If the pastry is too dry, add 1 tablespoon water or milk.
Form the pastry into a ball using your hands. Flatten it slightly, wrap in plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before using.

Recipe courtesy of

This recipe first appeared in 100 Best Cakes & Desserts by Gabriel Gate ($39.95).


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