Sometimes fresh nectarines can be a disappointment. They smell all nectarine-y in the stores so you take them home with great anticipation of that first juicy bite and the inevitably sweetness dripping down your chin. And then the sadness hits. The nectarines are juicy enough, even somewhat sweet, but they just don’t taste as strongly of nectarine as their aroma promised. That, my friends, is when I figure I have a couple of choices: make jam or tarts. Either will use sugar and heat to concentrate the flavors of the fruit and restore your good temper with deliciousness to share.
This is my contribution for this month's Friday Pie Day! Scroll down to the bottom to see what my fellow baker, Heather, is sharing today.
1 frozen puff pastry sheet, 8 3/4 oz or 250g, thawed – preferably all butter
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 nectarines (about 10 1/2 oz or 300g, whole)
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
Generous pinch fine sea salt
2 teaspoons butter
2 tablespoons apricot (or peach or nectarine) jam
To serve: thick cream or vanilla ice cream - optional
Preheat oven to 425°F or 218°C and line your baking tray with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
Unroll your puff pastry onto the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle a circle in the middle with the cornstarch.
Cut your nectarines in half and remove the pits. Slice the halves thinly.
Starting in the middle of the circle, lay your nectarines slices out, overlapping them slightly. Keep going until the entire circle of cornstarch is covered, using all of the nectarine slices.
Fold the sides of the pastry in about 1/2 an inch or 1cm and sprinkle the tops of the nectarines with brown sugar and the generous pinch of salt.
Now fold the pastry over again to cover about one quarter of the fruit, all the way around.
Dot the top with butter.
Bake in your preheated oven for about minutes or until the pastry is puffed up and golden all over.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Loosen the jam by adding a little water to it and warming it gently in the microwave or in a small pot on the stove.
Brush it on the top of the nectarines when the tart has cooled. I used some homemade caramel apricot lime jam but you can use whatever jam you have open in the refrigerator.
Cut into four equal pieces and serve with thick pouring cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Or perhaps a complementary slice of buttermilk pie. (See Heather's link below!)
This month Heather went traditional southern with a creamy buttermilk pie, and it looks delicious!
For more information and recipes, please check out her #FridayPieDay page!