Monday, May 4, 2020

Plum Tarte Tatin: happiness on a plate

Tarte Tatin is an elegant, impressive, and very French special occasion dish. It is somewhat of a French culinary masterpiece, something to aspire to, and only the best butter puff pastry can be used. Having only ever made an Apple Tarte Tatin the traditional way, I wasn't going to contemplate baking another one without plenty of time up my sleeve. This Plum Tarte Tatin is every bit as delicious as any I have tasted. The recipe is easy, and unconventional, and is a cinch to make.

 I first saw it on the amazing Lorraine's Not Quite Nigella blog, which is on my email feed, and didn't put this recipe away to make later, as I often do, as we have a very small window of opportunity here in the North Queensland tropics to buy plums. It seems to have been an even shorter season this year, and whilst I missed out on being able to find the special Queen Garnet plums used in Lorraine's recipe, the black plums which I used cooked up beautifully. Any fruit can be used though for a tarte tatin, apples, strawberries, or any stone fruit. You can find my Apple Tarte Tatin recipe here if you would like to take a look. I get so excited when new things like plums and peaches come into season, don't you?

Let's cook:


1/4 cup golden syrup or treacle (warmed in the microwave for 10 seconds)
500g/1 lb plums, cut in half
2 tablespoons of butter, cut into cubes
1.5 sheets butter puff pastry defrosted, or you could use two sheets and tuck them both in around the plums
Custard or vanilla ice cream to serve

(Just a tip: Use only good quality butter puff pastry for the best result and flavour. It's slightly more expensive, but as Lorraine said on her blog, non butter puff pastry is made using vegetable oil so the flavour just won't be as good. You will need to check the list of ingredients on the box though, as even puff pastry made with vegetable oil is sometimes called butter puff pastry.)
Butter puff pastry thawing out

Let's cook:

Preheat oven to 200C/400F

Brushing with warmed golden 

Line a 20 cm/8 inch round springform tin on the base with baking paper cut to fit, and spray the sides of the tin with oil spray. Brush the baking paper on the base of your tin with the warmed golden syrup. If you can't cover every little bit don't worry as it will spread during cooking.

Prepare your plums, remove the seeds and discard them, and place the plums cut side up on the golden syrup base

Cutting the plums in half and removing the stone was much easier than I thought it would be and didn't take very long at all. Place the plums together so they are touching. Place cubes of butter on top and then place one sheet of puff pastry on top, curling around the sides to fit the tin.

Place the other half piece of puff pastry in the centre.

Place in the refrigerator until you are ready to cook. I did this earlier in the day while I had time, and then baked it later so it was hot for dessert. Yum!

I just need to be turned over please.
Place the spring form tin on a baking try to catch any juices and bake for 25 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes then place a large plate over it, preferably the one you are serving it on, and then carefully turn it over so that the pastry is at the bottom. Serve with warm custard or ice cream. Mr. HRK loves custard so we ate ours with custard. We enjoyed the leftovers with cream. It tasted amazing.

If we still had plums available on sale in North Queensland, I would be making this again. The weather has cooled down beautifully here, with a minimum of 12 degrees and a maximum in the low 20s, and the sun is shining. I feel like cooking again, and am feeling so much more productive than during the heat of summer. How are you feeling? I hope you are enjoying your days as well.

Warmest wishes,



  1. Juicy sweet plums with a melt-in-mouth crisp pastry...absolutely divine!

    1. Thanks Angie, I enjoyed making it as well as eating it.

  2. hi pauline
    i agree about butter puff pastry. it gives such a better flavour than the veg oil ones. i have made tomato tarte tatin in the past, and an occasional apple version. there's something about them that is so delicious. hope you're doing well up there!

  3. Thanks Sherry we are going well. Nice rain at the moment. Tomato tarte tatin, mmmm that sound delicious. Hope all is good with you too.

  4. I'm so pleased that you liked this Pauline and clever idea making this in the morning and then baking it later so that the pastry is warm. Thank you for the kind words too! I hope you are both doing well?

    1. Thanks Lorraine. We are both doing very well and hope you are as well. I am looking forward to when I can make this recipe again.

  5. We have a pretty short plum season, too. Well, we can buy them throughout the year, but they're really only good in season. :-) Anyway, this is a wonderful looking recipe. And I agree all-butter puff pasty is the way to go.

  6. Thanks KR. Plums really are a precious commodity aren't they? Looking forward to when they are in season again. Hope you are both doing well?


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