This tart was inspired by two things: the lovely sourdough plum cake I spotted a couple of weeks ago on Steffen’s Dinners, and the abundance of blackberries that grow all over this wild little town I have called home for the last two weeks.
The plums are just beginning to ripen, too. The red and purple ones I used for this were just this side of still-hard, so they made for a nicely tart tart. I also used a few wild fennel fronds to scent the blackberry filling.
As with all doughs here in this minimalist kitchen, I mixed by hand. The dough has very little sourdough starter in it, so it takes a long time to ferment. I mixed it the night before and had the fresh-baked tart for breakfast. The dough doesn’t proof a second time after shaping the tart, so the crust is dense and crisp, almost like a cookie. Good for standing up to juicy berries.
Blackberry-Plum Sourdough Tart
(inspired by Steffen’s Dinners)
Yield: One 10 x 15-inch tart
- Mix dough: 15 minutes
- Fermentation: 8 –12 hours
- Shape and fill: 10 minutes
- Bake: 40 minutes
- 500 g flour
- 60 g mature 100%-hydration sourdough starter
- 56 g olive oil
- 240 g milk
- 60 g sugar
- 1/4 t. salt
- 600 g (about 4 cups) fresh blackberries
- 55 g brown sugar
- 1 T. cornstarch
- 1 T. finely chopped fennel fronds
- 1000 g plums, pits removed, sliced into wedges
- 80 g sugar
- 60 g water
- To make the dough, combine all the ingredients in and mix by hand until the gluten has reached a medium-low level of development. (This took me about 10 minutes.) The dough has a fairly stiff consistency.
- Place the dough in a bowl, cover, and ferment at room temperature for 8 – 12 hours, until doubled.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400F, with a rack in the center.
- Gently stretch the fermented dough into a 10 x 15-inch rectangle and place it into a sheet pan of the same size that has been brushed with olive oil.
- For the filling, toss the blackberries with the brown sugar, cornstarch, and fennel, and spread them over the crust, leaving about a one-inch margin. Arrange the sliced plums on top of the berries, cut side up.
- Bake at 400F for about 40 minutes, until the berries are oozing juice and the crust is golden brown.
- While the tart is baking, make a simple syrup by bringing the sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan. Cook for about a minute.
- Brush the crust of the baked tart, and the tops of the plums, with the syrup.