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Elegant Rhubarb Puff Square

Thursday, May 24, 2001

Slick as opening a box of frozen puff pastry dough, this tart is as delicious as it is elegant. Top with softly whipped cream. Mrs. Beeton would have lined her tart with crumbled ladyfingers, but we will use almonds.

1 box puff pastry (in freezer case)
1/4 cup blanched almonds
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons flour
4 cups or 1 1/4 pounds rhubarb sliced across the stalk 1/4 inch thick
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup apricot jam
To glaze pastry:
1 egg

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Allow pastry to come to room temperature, 1 hour.

Gently unfold one sheet. Roll it to a square about 12 inches by 12 inches. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Dip your fingers in water and moisten 1 inch around the edges. Fold 1/2 inch toward center. Press "hem" to seal with tines of fork.

Grind almonds with flour and sugar in processor until fairly fine. With this mixture, cover bottom of tart. Roll one-third of the remaining pastry sheet an inch larger on each side. Refreeze remainder for another use. With 2-inch cookie cutter or sharp knife, cut 12 to 15 shapes. Leaves are easily cut with a knife. Moisten edges of square with water and press shapes on. Arrange rhubarb, cut side up, touching, in rows, overlapping slightly. Shake 1/4 cup sugar over slices. Paint beaten egg lightly over pastry border and decorations. Chill tart 20 minutes.

Bake 35 to 45 minutes. Cover edges with foil if browning too much. Slide pastry onto a rack to cool. Heat jam and push through strainer. Spoon lightly over rhubarb to glaze. Serves 6.

Adapted from Mrs. Beeton and Gourmet

Thursday, May 24, 2001

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