It’s become fashionable or a mark of pride to eschew recipes. You’ll hear many cooks boasting of how they never use a recipe, or they just use techniques they know on whatever they have in the pantry. While there is some virtue to this, if you’re say, stranded on a desert island with a fully equipped kitchen but no cookbooks or internet — but I feel pretty strongly that there is a place for recipes in our collective culinary repertoire.
For the beginning cook, a recipe is an instruction that leads them step by step into the dangerous waters of cooking. A recipe will hold your hand, reassure you that you’re doing the right thing. For more advanced cooks, recipes are inspirational – for what is a recipe, really, other than a collection of ideas? – and communal. A conversation you’re having with whoever gave you the recipe — “Have you ever thought of adding this? What if I did it this way?” That’s why food and blogging go so naturally hand in hand — the internet has made the natural conversation about food larger, easier to navigate.
But in the end, a recipe has to come from somewhere, and this recipe for Apricot tarts is coming from me. It’s a start to the conversation, a diving board. It’s not revolutionary — after all, every patisserie in Paris of note has some variation of this tart, but it came, not from a recipe, but from my kitchen, some extra ingredients, and a flash of inspiration.
Of course, by writing it down, and sharing it with you all, it becomes a recipe, and I hope as such it guides you, or inspires you, and I hope you come back and tell me how you made it differently.
- Frangipane (I just used what I had left over from the Bakewell Tarts - it made 4 apricot tarts.)
- 4 squares frozen puff pastry
- 4 apricots, sliced thickly, pits removed
- raw or Demerara sugar
- Let pastry squares thaw enough that you can fold up the edges of the squares to make a rim. Divide Frangipane among the pastry. Arrange apricots atop the frangipane, and top with a generous sprinkle of sugar. Bake at 400 degrees 20-25 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden.
I lurve apricots! What is the recipe exactly? (time to cook, what you do to the fruit before adding to the pastry, etc) I’m not able to figure it out just by the ingredient list 🙂
Yummy! I love puff pastry because it is so handy for quick and beautiful savory or sweet tarts. I have never made frangipane, and I was so intrigued by it in your previous post. It sounds absolutely delicious. Beautiful photographs, too.