After successfully making a fair trade blueberry pie, I decided to try another fair trade dessert, once again using a recipe from my favorite cookbook Simply in Season. The plum tart recipe (on page 157) was in the summer section, and appeared to be relatively easy, so I decided to try making it.
The recipe calls for:
(Optional) 1 tablespoon of tapioca (I did not use any tapioca)
“Small blue plums” (The recipe referred to them simply as “small blue plums;” I assume it refers to damson plums, however, if you know of another variety of plum that fits that description, please share in the comments section.)
3/4 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
For the tart crust, I used the Shortbread Tart Crust recipe (on page 335):
1 cup of flour (up to 1/3 a cup of whole wheat pastry flour can be used; I decided to use 1/2 a cup of flour and 1/2 a cup of whole wheat pastry flour)
1/3 a cup of butter
2 tablespoons of powdered sugar
In order to create a fair trade plum tart, I used fair trade sugar and fair trade powdered sugar. I also used a rather special ground cinnamon; more information about this cinnamon can be found here.
First, the oven needs to be preheated to 350 degrees F. The shortbread tart crust recipe was surprising simple. The 3 ingredients (flour, butter, and powdered sugar) are mixed together in a bowl “…until crumbly, with no pieces bigger than a pea,” (Simply In Season, p. 335). The mixture is than pressed into a 9 inch pie pan.
Once the mixture was pressed into a pan, I started the filling. Although the recipe calls for small blue plums, I was unable to find any damson plums, and when I went to Linvilla I was told that they are not yet in season. Instead, while I was at Linvilla, I purchased Shiro sugar plums and another type of plum. I plan on making the tart again later this month when the damson plums are ripe.
To prepare the plums, the stems need to be removed. Next, the plums need to be cut in half and have their pit removed. Once the plums are prepared, they need to be placed in the tart crust “…cut side up, making slightly overlapping concentric circles starting at the outside,” (Simply In Season, p. 157).
Next, the sugar and cinnamon need to be mixed together, This mixture is then poured over the plums.
The tart can then be placed in the oven to bake for 45 minutes. As tempting as it is to start eating the tart as soon as it comes out of the oven, it really needs to cool a bit before it can be sliced.
I enjoyed the fair trade plum tart (although I preferred the fair trade blueberry pie). I thought the tart crust was excellent, and very simple to make. In my opinion, the Shiro Sugar Plums were more suitable for the tart then the more traditional plums, and next time I would like to try making it using the damson plums called for in the recipe.
Contributed by Fair Trade Intern Megan Draper