Recipe Source: Ferber, Christine. Mes Tartes. Michigan State University Press, East Lansing, 2003 pp. 177 - 8
I just calculated out the cost per serving of this tart. Do you know how much raspberries cost this time of year? It's by far the most expensive item in this recipe. I really should have come up with something else to use in their place. Pomegranate seeds, maybe. I wonder if they'd have been any cheaper. I guess that's what I get for using an ingredient that is so dreadfully out of season. It's listed as a fall recipe, but I don't generally think of raspberries and quinces as being in season at the same time. Maybe the varieties of both available in Alsace are different. I don't know, I've never been there and the chances of my ever getting there are slim to none.
At any rate, I really enjoyed this tart. It gave me an opportunity to use quinces - hooray! It also gave me an opportunity to prove to some friends not only that quinces exist but that they are a delicious and wonderful treat, not merely a medieval projectile. I got to show off my Quince Stash, which still takes up a large part of my refrigerator (and as of this writing still has its intoxicating, blooming aroma.) I cannot describe it as an unalloyed success however. Something - I'm not sure if I should blame the custard, the raspberries or the crust - was excessively soggy and made this more of a scooping-pie, maybe a crumble or a grunt, than a proper tart. Also, somehow the bottom of my tart pan has become lost. I was forced to use the bottom from a springform cake pan that is not actually the same size as the tart pan. This "worked" for a given value of worked, but it still made me plenty cranky.
People really liked this dish, and one of the things they liked about this dessert was that it wasn't overly sweet. There was just enough sweetness to cut the excesses of the quince without killing the natural flavor of my favorite fruit. I did make a few changes. I kind of made up the poaching part as I went - that part of the original recipe was a little confusing to me. I used my family crust recipe and made it whole wheat - you can use whatever you want, but I'm really bad with pastry and decided that I would just go with what I'm comfortable with. I didn't have Kirsch, but I did have Cointreau. They are not the same. I did not care. I used raw sugar for the crust as a matter of course and I added a bit of cardamom to the custard because I like cardamom.
Quince and Raspberry Tart (serves 10; approx. $2.53/serving)
1 pie crust
1 pound 2 ounces raspberries
4 quinces, washed, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
4 ounces whipping cream
3 ounces 2% milk
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup raw sugar, divided
2 tablespoons Cointreau
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
Juice of one lemon
- Mixing bowl
- Tart pan
- Combine 1/4 cup sugar with the lemon juice and 1/4 cup water in the saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Add the quince slices. Reduce heat to a simmer and allow to sit for a few moments. Remove them with a slotted spoon or a strainer or whatever. Note: If you want to do this ahead of time, as I did, transfer them to a resealable container and refrigerate in their poaching liquid.
- Preheat your oven to 350︒
- Line your pan with the crust. Because I had to kind of MacGyver the tart pan I wound up using more crust than I would probably have used otherwise - almost as much as I would have used for a double crust pie. You probably will use less, because you're using the right equipment. right?
- Blind bake your crust for 15 minutes. Let cool.
- Combine the remaining sugar with the cream, milk, egg yolks, cardamom and Cointreau. Whisk with a fork or a whisk or whatever you have and set aside.
- Layer the bottom of your tart with raspberries.
- Pour the cream mixture over the raspberries.
- Layer the quince slices over the raspberries. There were instructions as to concentric circles and I couldn't quite get that to work, but my artistic talents don't quite lend themselves to such things. Yours might.
- Bake 40 minutes.
- Cool and serve.