Monday, February 16, 2015

Cape Gooseberry Tart With Almond Cream

cape gooseberry tart with almond cream
Cape gooseberry tart
Baking with fruit is something that I absolutely love! A tart wasn't what I had intended for my latest post but my husband returned home from Mumbai with these wonderful golden fruits encased in papery husks. He was there for the Mahindra Blues Festival. Although I have tasted them before, that didn't happen where I had a kitchen and an oven!!
The other day at the horticultural show I had photographed one plant that was on display. The flower was so pretty and the fruits looked like tiny lanterns hanging from the plant. It's not commonly seen around here so I was fascinated.
Cape gooseberry plant behind the tree tomato, the flower and fruit.

The plant is a perennial that's about 2-3 ft in height. The berries resemble tomatoes. They are juicy and have many small seeds. It is aptly named in Hindi, rasbhari which stands for juicy.
For the pastry:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup butter, chilled and cut into cubes
1 large egg
( Although some sugar is added to sweet pastry, I usually leave out this part as I love it this way. The sweetness in the filling is good enough for me).
Transfer the flour to a large bowl. Add the butter and rub till the mixture is crumbly. Add the egg and bring the dough together. A little sprinkling of iced water may be necessary at this moment but I left it out as the egg was enough.
Shape the dough into a sausage shape (as that makes it easier to cut according to the quantity needed).
Wrap the dough in clingfilm and chill for at least 40 minutes.
The almond cream:
100 grams almond flour
100 grams soft butter
100 grams fine sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
Blend these ingredients together and chill till ready to use.
The cape gooseberries: I used about 20
Remove the husks. Wash and pat dry with a kitchen towel. Set aside.

Cape gooseberry tart
Cape gooseberry tart with almond cream

Take the dough out of the fridge. Cut half of it and check to see if it can be rolled out.
Skim a fine dusting of flour on your work surface and roll out the dough.
I don't grease my tins every time as there is enough butter in the dough and it doesn't stick at all!
With the help of the rolling pin, place the dough on your tart tin.
Press the sides and trim off any excess dough. Put it back in the fridge as you prepare the other ingredients.
Take it out and transfer the almond cream into the shell. Place the cape gooseberries all across the surface. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 25-30 minutes.
Cool and serve with a dollop of cream.

I thought the baking would make the fruit more acidic but that was not so. The tartness is mild and I realized that this is indeed a great fruit for baking. But if I hadn't checked out images on the internet, this wouldn't have happened. This tart was inspired by a picture from Eat Your Tarte Out. I didn't go through the recipe so it isn't exactly the same. The idea of placing these golden fruits across the top was what I loved! 
Some portions where the fruit had released its juices looked as if the tart could have done some more time in the oven. But as I dug in, I knew no more baking was necessary...
Other tarts that I have posted with almond cream are in these posts:
Prune tart
Prune and rum tarts
Apricot and almond tart
Amandine
Cherry frangipane tart
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