This week’s Monday Food Extravaganza* recipe was for a Nectarine & Raspberry Tart. Feeling contrary, I made a Peach and Blueberry Tart. Not like I couldn’t get my hands on the appropriate fruits, but I’m learning to embrace the act of messing with a recipe. Wild! That’s me!

The ingredients assemble themselves. Pretty simple, really. Blueberries (from you know where), butter, peaches (from California), puff pastry (from the freezer), eggs, sugar, raw milk, cornstarch. At this point the vanilla bean and milk were heating, so the bean was absent from the photo. It was, I might add, my first ever vanilla bean. Not shockingly expensive, but more than I care to spend on a regular basis.

There was plenty of whisking action (very Library Girl). Adding of egg yolks, sugar, and cornstarch mixture (the recipe instructed me to beat until “very white and light” – self respecting egg yolks will never be part of a white batter, do you hear me? NEVER.) More whisking. Melting of butter. More whisking.

Slicing of fruit. More whisking.

Finally, the vanilla cream was set to rest and cool in an ice water bath. The oven was preheated. Some coffee was drunk. Needless to say, the vanilla cream was taste-tested at this point as well.

Finally, the layering began, with a one inch border left to puff.

I thought the ruler from my sewing box would make a nice photo opportunity. Peaches were added. Brown sugar was sprinkled.

It went in the oven. Since I didn’t use as much puff pastry as the recipe called for (about 9 oz instead of 13 – it was either the whole box or half) I had extra everything, so I had a snack while I waited.

Emerged, the tart was sprinkled with blueberries, and I used my patented tea-ball sieve to dust it with powdered sugar.

It requires vigorous tapping but does the job.

If I were feeling really brave, I would’ve attempted my own puff pastry. I’m not. I’m lazy, and there was some in the freezer. Thanks, Kate.

The rest of the photos are, as always, on flickr.

I might make another one for the Independence Day festivities, or I might get an early start on next week’s recipe. Either way it will involve blueberries.

*”The Ice Capades are an extravaganza, Jason.”

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