Four days back, I had no plans of baking a tart this week. In fact, I did not even know that such a tart existed! Yet, I baked this tart yesterday, took pictures this morning and am posting it this evening.
Meeta is celebrating her blog anniversary with a special edition of Monthly Mingle, her monthly event. This month she chose to celebrate with champagne. Now, alcohol doesn’t feature in any form in our scheme of things, so I wished Meeta** a very happy blog anniversary and four days back made my apologies about not joining her party unless she was willing to let me arrive without any food in hand.
The rules at Meeta’s mingles is that guests bring the food and this time its offerings of champagne in some form or the other. She also insisted that I couldn’t stay away and was even willing to accept grape juice instead of champagne, as long as I made an appearance.
So how could I disappoint her?
Making something with grapes isn’t too difficult, but what on earth could I make with grape juice? I’ve never thought along this direction before and a lot of searching threw up a Purple Cow as an option! With a name like this, I wasn’t to sure that there would be any takers for it here, and it also seemed too tame to take to a party where everything else would be “champagne” class.
Then I came across a grape juice tart/ Tarte au Raisiné at La Prochaine Fois
A “raisiné”, is a thick and dark brownish concentrate of fruit juices. An old Swiss recipe, this raisiné or sweet and sour concentrate is made by slowly reducing the juice of seasonal fruit like apples and pears.
The original recipe uses the juice of white grapes. If I had to do this, it would mean making my own grape juice. Our days are getting warmer and the temperatures right now are about 5C above the normal at this time of the year.
Reducing the fruit juice itself was going to take time, and the last thing I wanted to do was to stew in my kitchen along with some grapes. So I bought a litre of dark grape juice and set to work.
I have changed Cathy’s recipe somewhat, mainly to adjust for ingredients available here and to reduce 1 egg. She also doesn’t give a recipe for the crust, saying any sweet tart/ pie crust dough would be fine. I used a short crust pastry from Knead by **Carol Tennant.
This tart is quite interesting in that it requires reduction/ concentration of fruit juice for the filling. We liked the tart for its sweet yet slightly tart filling which is well balanced out when served with whipped cream or home-made mascarpone cheese