A sliver of fresh apricot tart with a glass of Sauternes strikes me as one of the world's great food and wine marriages. At the farmers' market, look for apricots that are ripe but firm.
- FOR THE CRUST:
- 1 CUP UNBLEACHED ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR
- 1 TABLESPOON SUGAR
- 1/4 TEASPOON SALT
- 1/2 CUP UNSALTED BUTTER,
- CHILLED, IN SMALL PIECES
- 1 1/2 TABLESPOONS ICE WATER
- FOR THE FILLING:
- ICE WATER
- 1 1/2 POUNDS RIPE APRICOTS
- 1/3 CUP SUGAR
- 1/3 CUP STRAINED APRICOT JAM (SEE NOTE)
To make the crust: In a food processor, combine flour, sugar and salt. Pulse three or four times to blend. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle water over mixture and pulse until it just starts to come together. It will be crumbly; do not overwork. Transfer to a sheet of plastic wrap and top with another sheet. Pat and press dough into a flattened square, always pressing with the wrap so that your warm hands don't touch the dough. Wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Unwrap dough and put it on a work surface between two fresh sheets of plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, flatten dough into an evenly thick circle large enough to cover the bottom and sides of a 9-inch tart tin with a removable bottom. Transfer to the tart tin, removing the bottom piece of plastic wrap. With the top sheet of plastic wrap still in place to keep your hand from touching the dough, press the dough into the tart tin. Remove the plastic. Patch any thin spots with extra dough, then trim dough even with the pan rim. Chill dough 30 minutes. Prick with a fork in several places, then bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Cool on a rack.
Reduce oven heat to 350 degrees F.
To make the filling: Bring a saucepan full of water to a boil over high heat. Have ready a bowl of ice water. Add apricots a few at a time to the boiling water and blanch 15 seconds, then transfer to the ice water to stop the cooking. When cool, lift out and peel the apricots-the skins should slip off easily-halve them and discard pits. Cut each half lengthwise into thirds, or, if quite small, cut in two. Arrange the pieces tightly packed in the tart shell, rounded sides down. Sprinkle with sugar.
Bake until apricots are soft, about 45 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with strained jam. Serve warm.
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