There was a piece in Sunset magazine from writer Anne Lamott awhile back, and I was redirected to it recently from Orangette. Anne Lamott is a great writer, I have read a couple of her books, and appreciate how she makes points with both humility and humor. The line that struck me the most was "Time is not free - that's why it is so precious and worth fighting for". I make plans with my sister-in-law months in advance, or start discussing a date for a dinner with friends weeks before it's a reality, but isn't that how time goes? We fill it up in trying to get the most out of it, and then end up a bit drained. I just think you should read the article, it will mean something.

I've been envisioning this tart for awhile now, after seeing the posts from the two ladies mentioned below. Hugh shakes his head when we do a post over something I haven't ever made before (which is actually pretty frequent). It is time consuming, especially at the moment while both of us have pretty full plates, but I took a chance. The crust is great, with a nice crunch of cornmeal, and not so much butter than you feel a bit of guilt with each bite. The plums are sweet, barely tart, with some nice texture from not being cooked much at all. Then there's the filling, which may have turned out a bit gooey on first run (I made changes below, don't fret!), but it tastes quite nice. We started this blog as a creative outlet - a place for both of us to collaborate on things we enjoy, food and pictures. The moment it becomes solely about perfect food and a perfect story and mass traffic, I'll have lost sight of why we started doing this in the first place. I love sharing this space, am grateful for relationships I've started and opportunities that have come from it, but every now and then, the tart turns out a little gooey, alright? We ate it anyway, cause time is precious, and if you're waiting for everything to be perfect... you're going to be doing a lot of waiting. Cheers.

With influence from Not Without Salt and Beyond The Plate

As mentioned, the first time around I used honey and cream to thin out the mascarpone, which was unnecessary once it went back in the oven. Even if you want to play around with the sweetener, just make sure it is a dry one, as things melt during its second trip to the oven.

1/2 Cup Cornmeal
1 Cup White Whole Wheat Flour
1 Tbsp. Natural Cane Sugar
1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
4 Tbsp. Cold Butter or Coconut Oil
2-3 Tbsp. Ice Cold Water

4 Ripe Plums
1 Tbsp. Tequila
Bit of Orange Zest

1/2 Cup Mascarpone, room temperature
2 Tbsp. Muscavado or Brown Sugar

1/4 Cup Walnuts
2 Tbsp. Turbinado Sugar

1. The crust can be done in a processor, or by hand with a pastry cutter. For the processor, put all the dry ingredients in the bowl and give them a quick pulse to combine. Cut the cold butter into cubes, add it to the processor and give it a few more pulses so there are little pea size flecks of butter. Add the cold water, 1 Tbsp. at a time, until the crust just begins to hold together (Alternatively, you can cut the butter into the flour mix with a pastry cutter, and add the water 1 Tbsp. at a time as well). Press the dough in an even layer, into a 11x5 rectangular tart pan and put it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
2. Preheat the oven to 400'. Bake the crust on the middle rack for 20-25 minutes until golden on the edges, remove to cool.
3. While the crust cools, cut the plum into thin slices and gently toss it in the tequila. In another bowl, mix the mascarpone with the honey. Chop up the walnuts pretty fine (you can use the processor, but I hate washing that thing), mix them in a bowl with the turbinado.
4. Set the oven to 475'. On the cool crust, spread the mascarpone cream, drain the plums if needed then layer them nicely on top of the mascarpone. Lastly, sprinkle the walnut turbinado mix across the top. With a rack in the upper third, bake it another 5 minutes just to toast the top. Put it back in the fridge to cool and set the cream. Eat it!

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Reader Comments (50)

Beautiful... I love what you said about time and blogs. It's always a nice reminder to see time correctly-- as precious and not free. Beautiful and inspiring tart, even if a bit gooey! Sounds delicious. And thank you for sharing the thoughts

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Beautiful tart, beautiful words. Life is too short for perfection.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

So much good stuff lies in the imperfection. I revel in it. This tart is super beautiful.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdrianna from A Cozy Kitchen

Gooey tarts have their place at the dining table, right next to grown-up, crispy tarts :) I just read Anne's article as well, a very timely reminder. Lovely pics as always! xx

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

Dang, those images are just stunning. Funny thing is, I've got that Anne Lamott article open in the next tab. Trying to weave together all these ideas of time, value, and taking care of ourselves into my next post. :)

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKimberley

I can totally relate to Hugh. I always want to try a recipe at least 200 times before posting it, even though we never have the time. Luise is much more spontaneous. Whenever we have a free day for shooting she wants to change our plans and try something new. It stresses me out. But I agree that it's much more fun when the blog is a place for experimenting, not being perfect all the time. Let's leave that for the cookbook. With that said. Your tart sure looks picture perfect anyway.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

That is so beautiful I just went blind.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

true dat :).

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterheather @ chiknpastry

It looks perfect! And I agree, with so little time and so many recipes to try, it's worth taking a risk! ;-)

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMaria @ Scandifoodie

Beautiful tart and such lovely words to go along with it. I admire your endeavors in the kitchen and on this blog, and your openness about it all. Perfection is an elusive pursuit, better to appreciate things for what they are. I'm off to read Ms. Lamott's article!

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCookie and Kate

I know exactly what you mean about time and planning. I'm a big planner and I am also very committed to my friends and my family (not to mention my website!) but sometimes I feel like filling up all of my time 'doing stuff' actually makes it go by so much faster. Sometimes I hardly have time to appreciate it. I do love Anne Lamott. I, too, read the piece, trying to remind myself to leave a little time. xoxo

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKasey

What a great quote and reminder about time...I'm heading to the article now!

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSimply Life

I'm currently obsessed with a tart crust (savory) that has cornmeal in it - a blind baked one is cooling on my counter as I type. I should have used whole wheat flour! Doh! Love the look of this, I always overlook plums as I say goodbye to nectarines and hello to apples and pears. I love them out of hand, so why not in a dessert? Doh again. Also, we all come here to read about your creativity and your sweet life and if it was all perfect, I don't think you would have as many fans.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDana

Looks delicious. I was literally just telling a friend the other day that I want to bake something with plums. This just might be the perfect recipe. :)

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline

This I have to try - however, as it is spring here and no plums are even THINKING about growing on the trees (still in blossom stage) would this work if I substitute fresh rhubarb instead? I will give it a whorl and see!

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterblue fruit

Wow, this looks amazing! These are my favourite types of desserts, I just love using fresh fruit.. Thank you for sharing this! :)

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNatashia@foodonpaper


actually no. i will eat the entire thing. with pleasure.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrittany

Crazy gorgeous photos and words. Again. Time is well spent visiting your blog.

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrenee@sweetsugarbean

@Bluefruit - I would not call it a substitute, cause the fruit here is only cooked for 5 minutes, and that wouldn't taste so great with rhubarb. You could cook it down, sweeten it a bit and put it as the fruit layer but, don't directly swap in rhubarb for plum ;)

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSara

Stop waiting, start doing it, even if things turn out to be gooey - cheers indeed, your're absolutely right. A great tart and so ture words...

September 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarlene

This is just what I needed to read this morning. Thanks, S.

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJess

I adore Anne Lamott! I read that article awhile ago, but thanks for reminding me of it. It deserves a re-read!

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterErin

That looks incredible. I can't wait to try it; I'm quite partial to gooey tarts :)

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKaytie @ GardenKitchenHome

Oh, I made a tart with a cornmeal/whole wheat crust the other day and it was amazing! I'm all for a little imperfection :)

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJacqui

damn you. even your pits are pretty.

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Love this post Sara! Beautifully put! There is so much to savor during the process of creating. And time can't go backwards so we need to make the time for things that are important. Funny thing, my sister & I weeks & months in advance too. I've read a bit of the article on Sunset. Going to finish it up and make plans to try this tart! ;) Thanks for sharing!

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYumi

Oh my what a nice tart, I especially like your mold. The Tequila must give it such a unique twist. Great pics!

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHelene

lovely post and lovely tart!

September 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMaria @ Orchard Bloom

this looks amazing!

September 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbeth

How beautiful! I love tartes...

September 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBella

OMG! That looks phenomenal!

September 11, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterzziggysgal

i have a plum tart in the oven (with an oat and maple syrup crust) and when it is ready to eat i am certainly going to have some mascarpone on the side of my plate. thank you for the inspiration!

September 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSasha

it looks delicious! beautiful as well...

September 13, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteremma

Microsoft featured your website on their Windows 8 promo (the new operating system). That's awesome and the reason I know about your site. It's very beautiful.

September 13, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRobert Lewis

wow, what a beautiful and inspirational post! thank you. I made a plum torte earlier this week (using Marian Burros infamous recipe for the NYTimes) and I still have a lot of leftover little Italian Prune Plums and I'd like to put them to good use, ie bake them until bubbly and gooey and delicious. Do you think they would work equally as well as the larger ones that you used? Note to self: buy beautiful rectangular tart pan!

September 14, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertalley

I have been dreaming of plum tarts recently. I've never actually made one. This one looks exquisite, I love the sound of mascarpone and plums! Yum!!

September 15, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKitchen Vignettes

I've been dreaming of plum tarts recently, I've never actually made one. This one looks exquisite, I love the sound of mascarpone and plums together. Yum!!

September 15, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKitchen Vignettes

Now I really regret not having bought plums at the farmer's market on Thursday. Wonder how this tart would taste with peaches (which I'm canning whole and turning into butter today) maybe with brandy instead of tequila and lemon to replace the orange zest...

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterart and lemonsa

[...] Plum Tart with Mascarpone Cream [Sprouted Kitchen] Tequila and orange zest add some extra pizzazz to this gorgeous tart. [...]

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRecipe Roundup: September 16,

Beautiful creations, such a lovely blog.

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarta

Yum. I love turning stone fruit into something special and that looks magnificent. I also share your love of Anne Lamott. I read Imperfect Birds not too long ago and it was so well written and moving.

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKelly

A beautiful, inspired post and recipe, my darling!

September 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrian @ A Thought For Food

I love this - it is just beautiful, I am definitely going to try this! The pictures are beautiful too - I'm drooling!!

September 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSusie

Oooh, plums + mascarpone sound sublime. I'm thinking even a quick stew/macerated bowl of the fruit + rich cream would be pretty fine. Thanks for the idea!

September 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermolly

Plum tart and Mascarpone cream! Life really couldn’t get any better. I’m gonna try this before the last of the plum is snatched up! Thanks for the beautiful post!

September 20, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertracy@chinesefood

Love your tart as well as the reminder that time is precious-- why wait for perfection (it takes too long and it's pretty impossible to attain anyway, right?!).

September 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWinnie

A friend just sent me your blog. Love the pics!

September 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

I love plums. That looks amazing!

September 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLeslie

This looks so incredibly delicious! And you've just reminded me to run out and get a rectangle tart pan. Been meaning to do that. :-) Thanks for sharing this.

September 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHeather @ The Wisch List

This looks delicious. I'll definitely try this weekend but I expect mine will not look quite as elegant!

September 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTarn

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