Prune and Almond Tart

One of the more successful recipes from Rick Stein’s French Odyssey.


serves: 8
preparation time: 1 hr
cooking time: 1 hr


  • 225g plain flour, sifted
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 130g butter, chilled and diced
  • 1½ – 2 tbs cold water
  • 55g caster sugar
  • 300g mi-cuit (semi-dried) Agen prunes, stoned
  • 4 tbs Armagnac
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 35g ground almonds
  • 55g caster sugar
  • 200ml crème fraîche
  • icing sugar (for dusting)
  • additional crème fraîche (for serving)


First make the pastry. Put the flour and salt in a food processor or mixing bowl. Add the butter and work together to the fine breadcrumb stage. Stir in the water with a round-bladed knife until it comes together into a ball. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead briefly until smooth. Rest the pastry in a fridge for about 30 minutes before using.

Put the prunes into a bowl with the Armagnac and leave to soak for one hour, turning them occasionally to help them absorb the alcohol.

Roll out the pastry and use it to line a greased loose-bottomed flan tin (2½ cm deep, 24cm diameter). Prick the base all over and chill for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. Blind bake the case for 15 minutes then remove the blind baking gubbins and bake the case for a further 5 minutes. Set the case aside and reduce the oven temperature to 190°C/gas 5.

Drain the prunes over a bowl to reserve the remaining Armagnac. Add the ground almonds, egg, sugar and crème fraîche to the Armagnac then beat together until smooth. Distribute the prunes over the base of the pastry case and pour over the almond mixture. Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer comes away clean.

Cool the tart before dusting with a little icing sugar. Serve with additional crème fraîche.

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