Savory Plum Tart Recipe on Food52 (2024)

Serves a Crowd

by: JackieK



3 Ratings

  • Serves 9-inch tart

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Author Notes

A rustic flaky, buttery crust topped with a thin layer of rich and tangy mascarpone cheese, sweet onions and tart plums make for an incredible sweet-savory bite. And the small drizzles of honey and balsamic vinegar with just a bit of fresh basil round out the combination perfectly. This tart is delightful as an appetizer or as dessert. Included is a basic recipe for pâte brisée, a savory pastry dough, that was adapted from Julia Child's "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." However, the plum topping definitely adds a new and contemporary twist. —JackieK

Test Kitchen Notes

One mark of a great recipe is when each component is terrific in its own right. The pastry for this tart is beautiful and lovely to work with (as long as it’s chilled). The caramelized onions are delicious. And the way the plums are cooked – quickly sautéed with sugar added during the last moments – is a great technique for sautéing fruit. The edges brown, the fruit warms through without falling apart, and the tiny sprinkling of sugar forms a light glaze. JackieK's tart would make an impressive hors d’oeuvre – one whose components can be made in advance, then assembled just before guests arrive – or a last course for people who aren’t big dessert eaters. - A&M —The Editors

  • Test Kitchen-Approved
  • Your Best Fruit Tart Contest Winner

What You'll Need

  • Tart
  • 1 tablespoonextra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • Pinchsalt
  • 1 tablespoonunsalted butter
  • 2 firm plums, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoonsugar
  • 1 cooked tart shell (recipe below or use store-bought)
  • 1 tablespoonmascarpone cheese
  • 1 teaspoonhoney
  • 1 teaspoonbalsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoonthinly sliced fresh basil
  • Tart Shell (basic Pâte Brisée)
  • 1 cupall-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoonsalt
  • 8 tablespoonsunsalted butter, chilled and cubed
  • 1/4 cupice water
  • 1 egg
  1. To make the tart shell, begin by combining the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Add the cubed butter and pulse for about 5 seconds until well-combined. Pour in the ice water and pulse just until the dough forms a ball. Note: this can also be done by hand; use your finger tips to blend in the butter but be sure to work quickly so it doesn’t melt.
  2. Form the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic. Freeze 1 hour or refrigerate overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Roll out the dough onto a floured work surface to create a circle 1/8-inch thick. Invert a 9-inch plate over the dough to measure the size of the tart and cut out a circle. Set the dough onto a silicone baking sheet or a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Crimp the edges of the dough to make a decorative edge. Don’t worry if the tart doesn’t look perfect, it’s supposed to be rustic.
  4. Set a piece of foil over the dough and fill with dried beans. Leave the edges exposed. In a small bowl whisk together the egg and water. Use a pastry brush to lightly coat the edges with egg wash.
  5. Bake the tart dough for 8 minutes. Remove the foil with the dried beans and use a fork to dock the bottom of the tart. Return the tart to the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until cooked through and lightly browned. Cool to room temperature.
  6. To make the filling, heat the olive oil in a large saute pan set over medium heat. Add the sliced onions and cook stirring often until soft and caramelized, about 15 to 18 minutes. Remove the onions from the pan.
  7. Melt the butter in the pan then add the plums. Cook stirring often until lightly roasted, about 5 minutes. Stir in the sugar and cook 2 minutes longer, then remove from the pan and cool to room temperature.
  8. To assemble the tart begin by spreading the mascarpone cheese in a thin layer over the shell. Top with a layer of caramelized onions then arrange the plum slices in a fan shape. Drizzle the honey and balsamic vinegar over the top and garnish with thinly sliced basil. Serve at room temperature.


  • Pie
  • Tart
  • American
  • Honey
  • Plum
  • Vinegar
  • Fruit
  • Serves a Crowd
  • Fall
  • Summer
  • Vegetarian
  • Appetizer
Contest Entries
  • Your Best Fruit Tart

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Rupa

  • krikri

  • Ziggy

  • Meatballs&Milkshakes

  • MrsWheelbarrow

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31 Reviews

Rupa July 20, 2020

Definitely a special recipe! It took a little work, but it was well worth it. We added quite a bit more mascarpone than the recipe advised - buying a whole 8oz container and only using 1 tbsp seemed silly (and the picture definitely looks like more than 1 tbsp) - but with this combo of ingredients you can't go wrong, really.

krikri August 15, 2017

Mine tasted good! But was it even the same recipe? Store-bought pastry crust, peaches not plums, yogurt not mascarpone, and we didn't have basil. Never mind, I liked it! I'll make it again with fewer variations.

Ziggy March 13, 2014

This looks wonderful. Just wondering how long it might keep once it has been assembled?

Ceege March 24, 2013

Looking forward to trying this come summer when we get plums in season here in Ohio. What does "dock" mean? Perhaps it is what we call "prick"? Also, is this considered a dessert or an appetizer? Thanks for any advice.

missmegan1521 July 22, 2013

Yes, it does (as long as you're meaning to prick the tart base with a fork).
I'd consider this more of an appetizer/light main than an appetizer.

Green R. July 25, 2012

This is a lovely offering for a hot summer evening! We served this as an appetizer for a few friends last night and everyone enjoyed it tremendously. Although I love eating Santa Rosa plums with their rosy red skin, I think that the firm darker skinned Ebony plum works much better in this recipe. It was perfect!

Bushra August 14, 2011

This is making my mouth water. What's worse is that I'm fasting *sigh*

August 11, 2011

I keep seeing this picture on the Food52 home page and it's starting to make me drool! I have to try this over the weekend!

VeggieQueen June 14, 2011

I made this at the weekend and it went down very well indeed. Think I probably used more onions and mascarpone than the recipe called for but either way this combination of ingredients is heavenly!

criindel June 8, 2011

made this w/ peaches, in a premade crust. still works great! maybe some parmesan next time? and a filo crust maybe...though the thick premade crust did well in terms of sopping up the balsamic and marscapone.

MrsWheelbarrow July 17, 2010

I've been dreaming of this tart since last summer when I think I made it 10 times during plum season. Plums are not quite in the markets, yet, so this week I made the tart with apricots. YUM. It's a brilliant recipe and I expect I'll make it at least 10 more times this year. Thanks again for such a wonderful savory tart.

QueenOfGreen July 5, 2010

Wow! This was amazing. Yes, past tense. Alas, it's gone already.

mtrelaun April 2, 2010

I've made this 3 times, and love it to buttery crumbly pieces. I've tried different toppings and mortar combos, all delicious. The dough is a cinch to make without a food processor, by the way. I used my KitchenAid and got fantastic results. Also? Dough scraps make fab jam turnovers.

melissav December 3, 2009

Made this for a Thanksgiving app, using asian pears instead of the plums since it isn't plum season. It was a hit. Can't wait to try it with the plums once they come back in season!

DJT October 5, 2009

This tart has it all: savory, tart, tangy, sweet, buttery, salty, creamy, crispy & green herbaceousness!! Made one last night for a few of my foodie friends (including a chef) & it met with RAVE reviews!! So I'm taking one to an Italian wine tasting tonight.

October 1, 2009

I used the small Italian prune plums in this and it was perfection.

Aliwaks September 27, 2009

Trying it right now with a few modifications due to pantry: apples in place of plums, melting some gruyere on the tart shell in the second round in the oven and replacing basil with thyme... wish me luck!

Amanda H. September 27, 2009

Let us know how it turns out.

JackieK September 29, 2009

That sounds delicious! Great idea for changing it up with the seasons.

veronique September 24, 2009

Putting this in my recipe box to try. Looks superb. Might also work well with sliced grapes, fig, or pears.

veronique September 24, 2009

Putting this in my recipe box to try. Looks superb. Might also work well with sliced grapes, fig, or pears.

mariaraynal September 21, 2009

This recipe is so intriguing - the combination of sweet and savory, the plums, onions and basil, and you just can't go wrong with honey and balsamic.

maryvelasquez September 20, 2009

Made this today and it was excellent. The tart shell reminded me of puff pastry, which I would never make from scratch. I used Greek yogurt instead of marscapone; it matched well with the honey. All the components really come together.

Savory Plum Tart Recipe on Food52 (2024)
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