Wednesday, 29 February 2012
Crumbly pastry filled with a rich, dense fruit filling. Sound familiar? Its a sort of mince pie to eat year round instead of only at Christmas. A traditional Scottish Borders tart, Ecclefechan Tart comes from a wee village near Dumfries (not far from England) and this recipe appears to be its major export.
Variations abound depending on which baker you speak to and whose family recipe you manage to scrounge. Orange or lemon zest, cinnamon, walnuts, bright red glace cherries all appear in one version or another, occasionally a little ground almonds appear in the crust but research suggests that this instantly stops being an Ecclefechan Tart and transforms into a Borders Tart... oh the politics to be found in a dessert.
My version has walnuts for crunch, cherries for much needed colour, a weeny bit of orange zest for zestiness and absolutely no almonds in the crust.
for the pastry:
225g plain flour
2 tbsp ice cold water
Place the flour and butter in the bowl of a food processor and blitz for a few seconds until you have a crumbly texture. Add water a teaspoon at a time until the mixture comes together in a ball.
Wrap in cling film and put in the fridge to chill. Roll out and use to line a 23cm tart tin. Line the base with foil and fill with baking beans and bake for 10 mins. Remove the foil then bake another 5 mins then remove from the oven.
for the filling:
175g dark soft brown sugar
2tsp red wine vinegar
25g glace cherries
100g walnuts, chopped
zest of one orange
Melt the butter and beat together with the sugar, eggs and vinegar. Add the fruit and nuts and zest. Pour the mixture into the pre-baked pastry case and bake at 180C for 25-35 minutes. Cover the tart with foil for the last ten minutes to prevent the topping from burning.
Posted by Marie at 10:14