Thursday 24 November 2016

Pistachio and Blackcurrant slices

This was another one that was along the lines of "using what's in the house", though I had earmarked the bag of pistachio kernels for a frangipane a while ago. I used the same pastry recipe as I used for some tartlets ages ago, as it's very reliable, and handles well. I also wheeled out the long and narrow tart tin, as these were going to be transported, so rectangular slices would be easier to pack and move. The pastry makes more than you need, and I was able to also line a 20cm traditional tart tin with it (which is sitting in the fridge, with a high possibility of being transformed into a lemon meringue pie!)

Generally very happy with how they came out...I did the pastry slightly thicker than I normally do (5mm, as opposed to 3mm), and combined with the high sugar content, this gives it a good snap, which I think works with the softer jam and frangipane also makes them easier to eat, as there is a bit of structural backbone.  I went for 10 generous slices, rather than 12 slightly anaemic ones!

Pistachio and Blackcurrant Slice - Recipe

  • Pre-heat oven to 190'C
  • Get a 36 x 12cm tart tin

Sweetcrust Pastry Ingredients

  • 375g plain flour
  • 140g caster sugar
  • 140g butter, chopped into bits
  • 1 large egg
  • Pinch of salt
  • Chilled water
1) Place the flour, sugar, salt and butter in a food processor

2) Whizz until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs

3) Beat and add the egg, and continue to mix

4) Slowly add the water into the still mixing blender, until a dough starts to form

5) Take the dough out of the processor, and knead a few times until smooth.

6) Flatten into a disc, wrap in cling-film and chill in the fridge for half an hour

7) one chilled, unwrap the dough and place on a slightly floured surface

8) Roll out into a rectangle 5mm thick (I use batons), and larger than the tart tin

9) Line the tart tin, tucking the pastry into the corners,to form a tight fit

10) Using a rolling pin, roll over the top of the tin to trim the pastry to the tin

11) Line with cling-film and baking beans/dry rice

12) Bake in the oven for 13-14 minutes

13) Remove the cling-film and baking beans, and bake for a further 7-8 minutes, until the base is just turning gold

14) Remove from the oven, and reduce the temperature to 170-180'C

While the case is baking, you can prepare the fillings

Filling Ingredients

  • 150g pistachio kernels
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 25g plain flour
  • ¼ jar blackcurrant jam (or make your own!)
  • 25g dark chocolate (to decorate)
1) Put the butter and sugar in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment

2) Beat hard until light and creamy. You will need to scrape the sides down a couple of times

3) Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure the mixture is light and smooth before adding the next one.

4) Put the pistachio kernels in a food processor

5) Whizz until you have fine, even sized bits (but don't go too far, or it will begin to turn into a butter).

6) Add the pistachios and the flour to the stand mixer, and mix hard


1) Spread the base of the tart case with the jam, making sure it is evenly distributed

2) Transfer the pistachio frangipane to a piping bag

3) Chop off the end, and pipe into the tart evenly, covering the jam

4) Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes. You might want to turn it after 15 minutes if your oven is uneven.

5) Remove to a wire rack to cool

6) Once cool, take the chocolate and melt (for small amounts like this, I put it in a piping bag as chunks, and then put the piping bag in a glass of warm/hot water, and massage it occasionally)

7) Drizzle the chocolate over the top of the tart.

8) Cut into slices