Thursday, May 13, 2021

Jam Tart For Mother's Day - Mine

I know that many mothers enjoy having food prepared for them on their day...breakfast in bed, or as we did for my mom, a dinner that included Porterhouse steak (a rare treat) and strawberry shortcake for dessert. I guess I'm a bit different because I like to be the one cooking and baking. When Sweetie asked what I wanted for this Mother's Day, I asked that we invite our good friends from down the road and that we cook breakfast. This is a couple with whom we have shared many, many Sunday morning breakfasts over 20+ years. During the pandemic that wasn't possible. We missed them and our ritual breakfast. For a few months since getting vaccinated we have gotten together on our back porch with purchased breakfast take-out, just so that we could be together, although still sitting a bit apart. It seemed like it was time to share food that we cooked ourselves.

Our friends brought orange juice and champagne so we had mimosas! What a great way to start. Sweetie cooked the bacon and some of the best scrambled eggs I can remember having...perhaps the champagne helped?...with onions and mushrooms scrambled in. 

I made an Italian jam tart using a recipe from An Italian In My Kitchen blog. It has a shortbread type crust, and a thin jam filling. I used a jar of amazing sour cherry jam as the filling, with a touch of almond extract added because it brings out the cherry flavor. I also scattered some sliced almonds over the tart just before baking and after brushing the pastry with milk, so the recipe was tweaked a always! The crust has a beautiful golden color because I used farm fresh eggs given to us by neighbors across the road. Those yolks are soooo orange. It will be a fine tart with store bought eggs, too.

This is a wonderful tart, good for breakfast, but great for teatime or afternoon coffee, too. The shortbread is tender and easily made in a food processor, and you can use any jam you like. If your jam is on the tart side, that is the best. This makes 8 servings, but you could cut smaller slices and probably serve 10 tastes. I find it hard to imagine that no one would want two tastes, so, really it serves 4-6, right?

The dough has to chill for 30 minutes, at least, so I made it the night before. That made it possible to finish the recipe, bake it, and let it cool a bit before breakfast. Do try this one if you like pastry and jam.

Italian Jam Tart


1 3/4 cups flour (227 grams), plus 1 tablespoon more (sorry, no grams for that)
1/2 cup sugar (100 grams)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt (my addition)
1 egg, at room temperature
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons butter (131 grams), at room temperature

3/4 cup jam (253 grams)
3-4 drops almond extract (optional)
1 tablespoon sliced almonds (optional)

1 tablespoon milk for glazing the pastry

On the day you bake the Tart, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 8-9"tart pan with a removable bottom. (I used a 9")

Place the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a food processor fitted with the steel knife blade and pulse a few times to combine. Add the room temperature egg, egg yolk and the butter (which has been cut into pieces), also at room temperature. Pulse until the mixture comes together in a ball. Remove from the food processor to a lightly floured work surface and knead a few time to thoroughly combine. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes. Can be refrigerated longer, as long as overnight.

Remove wrapped dough from fridge, unwrap and knead the cold dough a couple of times to soften it. Set aside 1/4 cup.

In a small bowl, stir the jam with a fork and, if desired, add the almond extract and stir it in.

On a lightly floured work surface roll out the large quantity of dough to 1/8" using a floured rolling pin. Place rolled out dough into tart pan, pushing into the ridges gently with your finger and also into the crease at the bottom of the sides. Use the rolling pin, rolled over the edges of the sides, to clean the excess dough from the tart pan. Gather these pieces of dough and add to the reserved 1/4 cup.

Dock the dough in the tart pan by pressing the tines of a fork all over the bottom, about every 1/2 inch or so, making sure that you don't press the fork all the way to the bottom. 

Spread the jam over the docked dough. (I used a small offset spatula to spread the jam.)

In a small bowl combine the reserved 1/4 cup dough, the dough pieces gathered by the pan and the 1 tablespoon of flour and mix together with your clean fingers until the flour is incorporated. (This is an additional step that I took because my dough was too soft to work with to make strips that have to be handled. The extra flour did the trick.)

Turn that dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll out to 1/8 inch thick. Cut into strips and use to make a lattice over the jam layer. Gently push the strip ends down into the tart dough sides. 

Use a pastry brush to brush each lattice strip on the tart with the milk, then scatter the almonds (if using) over.

Bake in the preheated 350 degree F oven for 25-30 minutes until golden. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove the tart sides and put tart on a serving plate. Enjoy! Can be eaten a bit warm or at room temperature.

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