The idea for this tart evolved at the markets on Saturday morning with my son’s girlfriend. We both love lemon meringue pie; my son is not a fan. He loves passionfruit pannacotta; I’ve made it enough lately. So we decided on passionfruit tart, especially since passionfruit are plentiful at the moment.
This recipe is a combination of a few recipes. The pastry is the easiest ever, a melt and mix recipe from “At Home in Provence” by Patricia Wells. I didn’t add almond essence – I hate the stuff – but feel free to add 1/8 teaspoon if you like. And I used vanilla sugar instead of vanilla extract as I generally have a jar of vanilla sugar on hand, using a recipe of Jamie Oliver’s I saw on a pilot Jamie Oliver television show I saw ages ago. All you do is blend together a split and scraped vanilla bean and about 650g of caster sugar, pour through a fine sieve and store in a jar. Voila!
The filling is based on the lemon tart recipe in Stephanie Alexander’s “The Cook’s Companion” with passionfruit juice replacing the lemon juice and mascarpone replacing the cream. Next time, and there will definitely be a next time, I’ll use more passionfruit juice, so that’s what I’ve specified in the recipe.
Passionfruit Mascarpone Tart
125g unsalted butter, melted
90g sugar (I used vanilla sugar)
1/8 teaspoon vanilla pure vanilla extract (unless using vanilla sugar)
Pinch fine sea salt
180 g plain flour
6 large eggs
150 ml passionfruit juice (approx 11 passionfruit, strained)
Pulp of 1 passionfruit
250 g caster sugar
180 g mascarpone
For the pastry, preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 23 cm fluted tin with removable bottom.
In a large bowl, combine the butter ad sugar and stir to blend with a wooden spoon. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to form a soft biscuit-like dough. Do not overmix or let it form a ball.
Quickly transfer the dough to the centre of the tin. Using the tips of your fingers, evenly press the pastry along the bottom and sides of the tin. The dough will be quite thin.
Place the tin in the centre of the oven and bake until the dough is slightly puffy and set, about 12-15 minutes.
Turn oven down to 160C (320F).
For the filling, whisk all ingredients together and pour into the cooked pastry shell. Put the tart on a tray and place in the oven. Bake for approximately 40-50 minutes, until almost set.
Cool in the tin for at least 30 minutes. When cool, dust with icing sugar.