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QUINCE AND CRANBERRY TART

 

Ingredients for 8 to 12 slices:

Pate sucrée crust:

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla extract or gel

1/2 cup sifted confectioners' sugar

2 large egg yolks

pinch sea salt

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unbleached flour

Filling:

2 cups Riesling wine

2 cups sugar, divided

2 fresh quinces, peeled cored and thinly sliced

4 cups fresh cranberries

1 package gelatin dissolved in 1/4 cup cool water

 

Directions:

Crust:  Process the butter, vanilla and sugar together in the work bowl of a food processor.  Scrape down the sides, add the yolks and process to blend.  Add the salt and 1 cup of flour.  Pulse until the dough is a granular consistency.  If it is softer than that, add the additional 2 tablespoons of flour and pulse.  Empty the dough onto a floured work surface and press into a flattened rectangle.  Wrap tightly, and refrigerate at least 1 hour or as long as 24 hours.

 

Butter a 9" springform pan.  Roll out the chilled dough between sheets of wax paper or plastic until it exceeds the circumference of the pan by 1".  Remove the top sheet and turn the dough into the prepared mold.    Press the dough into the edges of the mold and remove the second sheet of paper.  Trim the dough along the vertical sides.  Prick the dough in several places on the  bottom.   Wrap the dough tightly with plastic wrap, and chill at least 30 minutes.

 

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Remove the chilled pastry crust, unwrap it, and place on a bake sheet.  Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the crust is set and the vertical edges have begun to brown.  Cool on a rack.

 

Filling:  Bring the wine and 1 1/2 cups wine to a simmer in a deep 9" skillet.  Cook slowly for 5 minutes.  Add the thinly sliced quince slices, and cook at a low simmer until the fruit is tender, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Skim off the fruit pieces and reserve.  Add the remaining 1/2 cup sugar to the skillet and return the syrup to a simmer.   Add the cranberries after having rinsed and picked over them.  Cover the pan and cook until they begin to pop.  Uncover and cook another 5 minutes.  Take off the heat.

 

Dissolve the gelatin in the cool water.  Stir 1/4 cup of the cranberry cooking juices until the gelatin dissolves.  Return this liquid to the cranberries and stir to blend.  Reserve.

 

Assembly: Spread 1/2 of the quince slices over the bottom of the cooled tart shell, using the less perfect ones first.  Spread the cranberry mixture over this layer, and top with a spiral arrangement of the remaining quince slices.  Cover tightly with plastic and chill thoroughly.  Serve chilled.