Barsac

Barsac is a sub-area within the SAUTERNES wine district in BORDEAUX which gives its name to a sweet, white wine. Barsac goes by the generic name of SAUTERNES.

Attractive with a slightly tart, fresh taste, Barquettes aux Abricots (bahr-ket oh-zah-bree-koh), may be served with after noon tea, or with coffee after dinner. Canned apricot halves may be substituted for fresh apricots, but they must be thoroughly drained and dried on kitchen paper towels before using. To make these tarts you will need a fluted, oval- shaped pastry cutter and

14 boat-shaped barquette tins.

6 oz. flour

½ teaspoon salt

2 oz. butter

4 to

5 tablespoons iced water

2 oz. lard

2 teaspoons sugar

7 fresh apricots

4 oz. apricot jam

To make the pastry, sift the flour into a mixing bowl and add the salt. Divide the butter into two pieces and add one piece to the flour. With your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. With a knife, mix in the water to form a firm dough.

Put the dough on to a floured board and, with your hands, shape it into a square. Roll out the dough into an oblong and dot two-thirds of it with small pieces of half the lard. Fold over one-third of the pastry and then the other third to make a neat, square parcel. Press down the edges with the rolling-pin to seal them.

Turn the pastry round so that the sealed ends are facing you and roll out again into an oblong. Dot with pieces of the remaining lard, fold in three, seal the edges, turn the pastry and roll out again. Wrap in greaseproof paper and chill in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. Repeat this process with the remaining butter.

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C).

Roll out the pastry to y-inch thick and cut out

14 ovals with a fluted, oval cutter. Line the boat-shaped barquette tins with the pastry. With a fork, prick the bottom of the pastry to prevent it from rising during baking. Sprinkle

1 teaspoon of sugar into each barquette.

Stone the apricots and cut each one into four pieces. In each barquette, arrange two pieces of apricot, skin down.

Put the barquettes in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes. Remove the barquettes from the tins and leave them to cool on a wire tray. With the back of a spoon, press the apricot jam through a sieve placed over a bowl. Pour it into a small saucepan and warm it over moder-ate heat. Spoon a little apricot jam into each barquette. Serve hot or cold.

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