Nectarine Tartlets

A mouth-watering combination of fresh nectarines and lemon-flavoured ice-cream set in crisp rich shortcrust pastry, Nectarine Tartlets make an unusual dessert.

8 fl. oz. double cream

2 tablespoons castor sugar

10 fl. oz. lemon-flavoured ice-cream

3 large nectarines, peeled, stoned and halved

3 tablespoons Apricot Glaze

2 oz. slivered almonds

12 oz. flour

½ teaspoon salt

3 oz. vegetable fat

3 oz. butter

1 tablespoon sugar

1 egg yolk, lightly beaten

1 to

2 tablespoons water

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200°CV

First make the pastry. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the vegetable fat and butter and cut them into small pieces with a table knife. With your fingertips rub the fats into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse bread-crumbs. Stir in the sugar.

Add the egg yolk and 1 tablespoon of the water and mix them in with the knife. Knead the dough lightly, adding the remaining water if the dough is too dry. Form the dough into a ball and place it in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a circle about {-inch thick. With a 6-inch pastry cutter, cut the dough into six circles. Line six 4-inch tartlet tins with the dough circles.

Place the tartlet tins on two baking sheets. Line each tin with greaseproof or waxed paper and weigh the paper down with a spoonful of dried beans or rice.

Place the baking sheets in the oven and bake the tartlet cases for 10 minutes. Remove the paper and beans or rice and continue baking for 5 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.

Remove the tartlet cases from the oven and set them aside to cool on a wire rack. When they are cool, remove the pastry cases from the tartlet tins. Set them aside.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl beat the cream with a wire whisk or rotary beater until it forms soft peaks. Stir in the sugar and beat for a further 30 seconds or until the cream will hold a stiff peak. Spoon the cream into a forcing bag fitted with a plain nozzle and set aside.

Put equal amounts of the ice-cream into each pastry case and top with a nectarine half, cut side down. Using a teaspoon, dribble the apricot glaze evenly over each nectarine.

Pipe the cream in decorative swirls around the edge of each tartlet. Sprinkle with the almonds and serve immediately.

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