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The First Nectarines

Nectarine Tarte Tatin

I get excited when I see the first stone fruits of the season: yellow and white peaches, apricots, plums, nectarines. I am always eyeing those plump juicy Georgia peaches at the market. My mom always has a big fruit bowl around for dessert and the selection is always so great, winter or summer but I especially miss the big juicy melons, "brugnons", apricots and tiny gren/yellow plums.
The other night at the store I found a bin relocated to a dark corner of the produce section full of tiny bright red and incredibly fragrant nectarines, it put a big smile on my face, made my step lighter, my mood giddy and my husband happy…he knew ther would be pie on the menu…
Everybody seemed to go for the big and daring fruits and these were completely left alone. What a shame, they were so juicy and tasty, just about the size of small plums, I claimed about 20 and ran home!

I love to eat and to make Tarte Tatin, but I rarely do it the original way, with apples. I love mango, pear, banana, plum tarte Tatin. I was perousing the latest Cooking Light that evening when I came across the recipe for Nectarine Tarte Tatin, talk about fate!
Here is the recipe, with my variation in italics.

Nectarine Tarte Tatin adapted from Cooking Light
7 medium nectarines
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons butter
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough (such as Pillsbury) I used the other half of the Pate Sucree used the day before.

Preheat oven to 425°. I set mine for 350
Cut 1 nectarine in half. Quarter one nectarine half and the remaining 6 nectarines.
Combine sugar, water, and juice in a 12-inch stainless-steel skillet. Cook for 2 minutes or until sugar is golden (do not stir). Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla. Let stand 3 minutes.

Place nectarine half, cut side down, in center of sugar mixture; arrange nectarine quarters, cut side down, around center.

Return pan to medium heat. Cook for 10 minutes or until sugar mixture is bubbly (do not stir). Remove from heat; let stand 3 minutes.

Roll pie dough into a 12-inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Place dough over nectarine mixture, fitting dough between nectarines and skillet. I used a nine inch cast iron skillet.

Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven, and cool for 10 minutes. Carefully invert tart onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges.
I baked mine at 350 for 30 minutes.

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