Fresh Fig Tart with Rosemary Cornmeal Crust and Lemon Mascarpone Cream

fresh fig tart with rosemary cornmeal crust and lemon mascarpone cream / a thousand threads
Two days before I decided to make this tart, I realized I’d finally need to go out and buy a tart pan with a removable bottom. Why? Because I wanted to take pretty pictures of the rosemary crust, of course… purchases in this house aren’t usually based around logic.

Take our new friend Chuck, for example. In my older age I seem to have developed a love for a certain variety of décor… combine that with my generally (but pretty lax) vegetarian diet and you might find something of a contradiction… but god does Chuck look great on my floor.

That crust was going to look great if I could just find a pan. And that would be easy, right?

fresh fig tart with rosemary cornmeal crust and lemon mascarpone cream / a thousand threads
So the day before I decided to make this tart, Mark and I went out to pick up a pan… but honestly I was surprised to find out how hard it is to track one down. Are tarts and quiches not a thing? Do we not do them here in Frederick? We must stick with the good ol’ ‘merican pie.

On our last try we hit Macy’s, thinking for sure they’d have what we needed. When we didn’t find it, I thought for sure that something must be wrong. “There is no way that Macy’s doesn’t carry a tart pan what the fuck? I’m asking…”

So I asked.
fresh fig tart with rosemary cornmeal crust and lemon mascarpone cream / a thousand threads
“Is there something I can help you with?” Cue the very slight Frederick twang.

“Maybe, we were just searching for a tart pan.”

“A what?!” Shock hits her face… she may not have heard me correctly.

“A Tart pan.”

“OH” She’s relieved… this is a classy establishment, no fart pans here… but she’s still confused. “What is…”

“It’s like a pie pan, but flat with crimped sides and a removable bottom… for a tart or a quiche?”

“Oh,” now she’s laughing at us a little, what the hell were we thinking, “I’ve never heard of it.”

“Have you ever had a tart?”

Well you know how the rest of this went…

fresh fig tart with rosemary cornmeal crust and lemon mascarpone cream / a thousand threads
Eventually we did find a pan… but it wasn’t in Frederick. Apparently we have some kind of anti-tart ordinance within Frederick city limits preventing us from making anything but apple pie.

Who’d have thought? But now you know…

The good news is that I’m pretty sure you should be able to find a tart pan just about anywhere else (although maybe not? am I crazy here?) and when you do, this gorgeous fig tart is more than worth a try. Figs are super super sweet, but don’t be scared off by the abundance of them here… the sweetness is balanced beautifully by a savory crust and creamy filling that you’ll want to curl up with on one of those cool fall nights we’re seeing more and more.

fresh fig tart with rosemary cornmeal crust and lemon mascarpone cream / a thousand threads
Fresh Fig Tart with Rosemary Cornmeal Crust and Lemon Mascarpone Cream
Adapted from Gourmet

For crust
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal (not stone-ground)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
4 to 5 tablespoons ice water

For filling
1/3 cup sour cream
1 cup mascarpone cheese (8 oz)
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons red-currant jelly
1 tablespoon honey
1 1/2 lb fresh figs

Special equipment: an 11 1/4- by 8- by 1-inch rectangular or 10-inch round fluted tart pan (1 inch deep) with a removable bottom

Make crust:
Pulse together flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt in a food processor. Add butter and rosemary and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some small (roughly pea-size) butter lumps. Drizzle evenly with 4 tablespoons ice water and pulse until just incorporated.

Gently squeeze a small handful: If it doesn’t hold together, add more water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition and continuing to test.

Press dough evenly onto bottom and up sides of tart pan with floured fingers. Smooth dough with a small offset metal spatula or back of a spoon (floured if necessary), then roll a rolling pin over top of pan to trim dough flush with rim. Chill crust until firm, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Bake crust in middle of oven until center and edges are golden, 25 to 30 minutes (don’t worry if bottom of crust cracks), then cool in pan on a rack.

Prepare filling and assemble tart:
Whisk together sour cream, mascarpone, sugar, zest, and salt in a bowl.

Heat jelly and honey in a small saucepan over moderately low heat, whisking, until jelly is melted, about 4 minutes, then cool glaze slightly.

Remove side of tart pan and spread mascarpone cream in shell. Cut figs lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices and arrange decoratively over cream. Brush figs with honey glaze.

Crust can be made 1 day ahead and kept, covered, at room temperature.

Mascarpone mixture can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. · Tart can be assembled 1 hour ahead and kept, loosely covered, at room temperature.

14 Comments

  1. Posted September 16, 2013 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    That sounds and looks delicious! Love the pan story too

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      Thank you!! Ha I’m so glad we were finally able to track one down.

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      Thank you!! Glad you like them both. ;)

  2. Posted September 16, 2013 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    This might be the most beautiful tart I’ve ever seen–and so worth the effort to find the right pan!

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      Thank you Lena!!

  3. Posted September 16, 2013 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    I wish we were neighbors so I could sample these delicious treats you whip up!

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

      Aww I wish we were neighbors so I could share them!!

  4. Mom
    Posted September 16, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    OMG so beautiful . I agree with Lena ( most beautiful tart) and Gloria ( wish we were neighbors so I could taste). I absolutely love figs and…figs + Marscapone must equal love…yum!, photos are gorgeous !

  5. Posted September 16, 2013 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

    LOL!! Your story just cracks me up, Laicie! Boy, did you guys have an adventure trying to locate this tell-tale tart pan! But I’m glad it all worked out because this fig tart looks AMAZING!! And oh so beautiful! Thanks for the recipe – I’ll have to try out my baking skills to make this one day :)

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      Haha we definitely did! Thank you so much! You have to try it out, it’s definitely worth it.

  6. Posted September 16, 2013 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    AMAZING!!!! Beautiful!!! When are you opening your bakery? :)

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

      Oh man… now? Please? Actually I have a little post to write on that subject soon. ;) It’s not huge news, but we’re on our way.

  7. Posted September 17, 2013 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Looks heavenly!! I have a tart pan somewhere… (by the way, these two words will never sound the same to me now! ;-))

    • Laicie
      Posted September 17, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      Haha Esther I love it. ;)

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