Thursday, June 30, 2011

Vanilla Bean-Pineapple Tart

Pineapple-Vanilla Bean Tart Closeup

The smells of pineapple, vanilla, and rum flooding my house when I baked this tart made me think of umbrella drinks and tropical vacations.   These ingredients are topped off by a beautiful, intricate lattice crust.  It may look complicated, but the only difficult part of this recipe was keeping the dough cold during the summer heat.  It kept getting melty and sticking to my board and tearing, and it took a few return trips to the fridge and a bunch of patience I was running out of.

Pineapple-Vanilla Bean Tart

But the smell of pineapple and rum instantly restored my mood.  And in the end the crust looked great and it's always fun to weave a lattice.  The filling tasted like the top of an upside-down pineapple cake (or the bottom, if you haven't up-ended it yet).

Lattice Top

Half your dough is used for the tart bottom, but the other half is cut into strips for your lattice top.  The lattice is woven on parchment paper (or waxed paper, in this case), frozen until ready to use, and then carefully slid on top of the tart.

Pineapple-filled tart

Fresh pineapple is simmered with rum, sugars, and vanilla bean.  The cooked and cooled chunks are added to the tart shell.  This tart is in the very sweet category, so next time I would personally halve the sugars.  If you enjoy sugar rush, follow the recipe.

The taste of rum is faint in the final product, if that's a concern of yours.  I'm not sure if this is because I used whatever rum was in the house instead of the dark rum that was called for, or if the alcohol simply cooked off.

Lattice on Tart

The tart is then chilled with the lattice, which is brushed with egg wash before going in the oven.

Mini Pineapple-Vanilla Bean Tart

And since I made this recipe in a square pan, having no rectangular tart pan, there was some filling and dough left over for a mini.  Isn't it cute?

This post was submitted to Sweets for a Saturday.

Vanilla Bean-Pineapple Tart
From Martha Stewart's Pies and Tarts

For the crust
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
¼ cup granulated sugar
¾ tsp coarse salt
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into  ½-inch pieces
¼ cup ice water
1 large egg yolk, for egg wash
2 tbs heavy cream, for egg wash

For the filling
1 large pineapple (4½ pounds), peeled, quartered, and cored
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise and scraped
2 tbs fresh lemon juice
½ cup dark rum

Make the crust: Pulse flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined.  Add butter, and process just until the mixture resembles coarse meal.  Drizzle with the ice water, and pulse until mixture just begins to hold together.  Shape dough into 2 disks.  Wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate 1 hour or up to 3 days.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out each disk of dough to a 12-by-9-inch rectangle, ⅛ inch thick.  Place 1 rectangle on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet, and refrigerate or freeze until firm, 30 minutes.  Fit other rectangle into an 11-by-8-inch rectangular tart pan with a removable bottom.  Trim dough flush with rim.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

Make the lattice.  Using a clean ruler as a guide, cut chilled rectangle into eighteen ½-inch-wide strips with a sharp knife or pastry wheel.  Lay 9 strips of dough on another parchment-lined baking sheet in pairs of parallel lines slightly longer than tart pan.  Starting in center, weave 1 new strip under and over strips on baking sheet.  Weave a second strip  ¼ inch away, this time over, then under.  Repeat, weaving pairs of strips across half of tart, spacing pairs 1 inch apart.  (If strips become too soft, remain to freezer until firm.)  Return to center, and repeat with remaining strips to form lattice pattern.  Freeze until ready to use.

Make the filling: Cut each pineapple quarter crosswise into ⅓-inch-thick slices.  Combine sugars, vanilla seeds and pod, and lemon juice in a large saute pan.  Add pineapple, and cook over medium heat, stirring until sugars dissolve and mixture becomes saucy, about 3 minutes.  Add rum, and simmer until pineapple has softened and almost all liquid has evaporated, about 20 minutes.  Let cool in pan.  Discard vanilla pod.

Spread pineapple mixture evenly in shell.  Combine yolk and cream, and brush along top edges of tart.  Carefully slide frozen lattice onto tart, centering it; press edges to seal.  Trim excess dough.  Brush top of lattice with egg wash.  Refrigerate or freeze, uncovered, until firm, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400°.  Transfer tart to a rimmed baking sheet.  Bake 15 minutes.  Reduce heat to 375°, and bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, 40 to 45 minutes more.  (If crust browns too quickly, tent with foil.)  Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack.


  1. This tart looks amazing! I've never baked with pineapple but what a great idea!

  2. This looks delicious! I love pineapple that's been cooked. The sweetness in it comes out so much more. Thanks for sharing this. Definitely buzzed!

  3. I have fresh pineapple in the house now! Yummy looking recipe. Normally I make a pineapple crisp but this recipe has me salivating! Thanks for posting...can't wait to try it.

  4. This is just beautiful! I have never heard of a pineapple tart before, but I'm so eager to try it! Thank you for sharing yet another tasty treat. This was a lovely way to end my week. I hope you have a beautiful weekend and a happy 4th of July!

  5. What a gorgeous tart! It looks beautiful and sounds delicious. (I was trying to work with dough in the humidity a couple of days ago, and I can sympathize!)

  6. How clean is that first square tart of yours :-) Love it!!

  7. Oh, I am soooo drooling right now! The idea of a cooked pineapple with a yummy crust sends me to heaven! Can't wait to try it!


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