My favorite part about summer, aside from a beach and a tall, cool drink, is pie!
I’ll take it in any shape or form, especially if I can have a whole one to myself. These individual tartlets give the essence of pie without the fuss!
These are rustic and casual tarts. Simply thaw some all-butter frozen puff pastry, cut it into squares, and top it with almond filling and peaches. You don’t have to peel the fruit, just set the slices atop the tarts to give them that little something extra-special.
The Best Puff Pastry to Buy
Using frozen puff pastry makes you look like a fancy pastry chef; just don’t tell your secret to anyone!
Seek out all-butter dough for the best results. Dough made without butter will work, but it is a bit on the bland side and doesn’t crisp as nicely as all-butter dough.
Package sizes of dough vary but are usually in the 14- to 16-ounce range. Depending on the original size of the sheet, you will cut it into squares or rectangles. Remember, this is fancy but rustic, so the exact size of the tarts is flexible!
HOW TO WORK WITH PUFF PASTRY
To use frozen puff pastry, thaw it in the refrigerator one day ahead of time. If you are crushed for time, you can thaw it at room temperature for a couple of hours, but keep your eye on it so it does not get too warm or soft. If it starts to soften too much, just pop it in the fridge for 20 minutes or so.
Unfold the thawed, but still cold, dough and lightly roll it on a floured work surface to even out gaps where the folds were. If the dough starts to soften, set it on a baking sheet and pop it in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.
Cut it into squares or rectangles, depending upon the original size of the puff pastry sheet. Refrigerate again until you are ready to fill and bake the tarts.
WHAT IS FRANGIPANE?
In French pastry, frangipane is a traditional almond filling made with ground almonds, butter, and eggs. The heady aroma and sweet almond flavor make it particularly good in tarts with fruit, but it also can be used in other baked goods like cakes and pastries. The almond filling is what makes these tarts exceptional.
If you’re not familiar with frangipane, you’ll be pleased to discover how easy it is to make in the food processor with almond flour.
If you don’t have almond flour, you can also finely grind 1 1/4 cups whole almonds, with or without the skins, roasted or unroasted, in the food processor. Stop and stir often so the almonds grind evenly. They may not be as finely ground as almond flour that you purchase, but that doesn’t affect the recipe—it just gives your filling a little more texture.
HOW TO REMOVE THE STONE FROM PEACHES
Perfectly ripe peaches should feel only slightly soft when you gently press the flesh. If they are still hard, just leave them out at room temperature for a day or two.
To remove the pit from peaches, halve them by cutting all around along the “crease” through to the pit. Twist the halves in opposite directions to release them from the pit, and then remove the pit.
Freestone peaches are the easiest to work with since, as the name implies, the pits (stones) can be removed without much effort. Sometimes local, early-season peaches are not freestone and the label doesn’t indicate that. No worries. Dig out the stone with the edge of a spoon.
MIX IT UP!
Replace the peaches in this recipe with any stone fruit such as plums, cherries, or nectarines. In the fall, you could use apples or pears, too.
MAKE AHEAD TIPS
Once assembled and baked, the tart is really best if eaten on the day it is made (though leftovers are pretty good with coffee the next morning!). Leave at room temperature overnight, covered with foil.
You can, however, make and refrigerate the frangipane filling up to three days ahead of time. You could also cut out the pastry squares and refrigerate them, covered with plastic wrap, up to one day before you bake them. After that, the pastry tends to discolor.
NEED MORE DESSERT IDEAS?
Peach Frangipane Puff Pastry Tarts Recipe
Package sizes of puff pastry vary but are usually in the 14- to 16-ounce range. Depending on the original size of the sheet, you will cut it into squares or rectangles. Remember, this is fancy but rustic, so the exact size of the tarts is flexible!
- 1 sheet all-butter puff pastry (14 to 16 ounces), thawed
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into slices
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon amaretto or 1 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 pounds (about 4 medium) ripe peaches, cut into 1-inch wedges
- 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
- 3 tablespoons apple jelly or apricot jam
- 1 tablespoon water
1 Preheat the oven: Line a baking sheet with parchment and preheat the oven to 375ºF.
2 Prepare the dough: On a lightly floured work surface, unfold the puff pastry. Lightly roll it with a rolling pin to even it out if there are any gaps or wrinkles. Transfer the dough to the parchment-lined baking sheet.
With a pizza cutter or knife, cut the dough into 9 pieces to make four-inch squares or similar size rectangles. The exact size depends upon the original shape of the dough. Spread them apart on the baking sheet. Refrigerate while you make the filling.
3 Make the frangipane: In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, pulse the almond flour, sugar, and salt for a few seconds to mix. Add the butter pieces and pulse until the butter is incorporated with no large visible pieces.
Add the egg, all-purpose flour, amaretto (or almond extract), and vanilla and process until the frangipane is smooth. It should have the consistency of natural almond butter, thick but runny.
4 Assemble the tarts: On each square of pastry, spoon about 1 tablespoon of the frangipane. It will spread out naturally on the pastry, and even further once you add peaches. If some spills over the edges that’s fine. If your frangipane doesn’t spread, feel free to push it around the tart with the back of your spoon. You may have some frangipane left over, depending on the size of your pastry squares.
Set 5 to 6 wedges of fruit on top of each tart—no need to be too fussy about their arrangement. Sprinkle each with the turbinado sugar.
5 Bake the tarts: Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the peaches are soft and the frangipane and pastry are golden.
6 Glaze the tarts: In a small microwave-safe bowl, heat the jelly or jam and water for 30 seconds, or until liquefied. Brush the warm glaze over the peaches. Serve the tarts on the same day that they are made.
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