Thursday, March 14, 2013

Pi Day CatBoy Plum Jam Crostata

Pi Day is here and Virtual Potluck is celebrating with ... well, pie. All kinds of different pies.

I decided to make a crostata - a rustic sort of pie, baked free-form. Sort of flat. In this case, it's very flat, since i didn't use solid fruit - I just used a very flavorful jam.

When my husband was in the hospital, I called upon cooking friends and fellow bloggers to do guest posts here. One was my friend Charles who goes by the name "Catboy" on some of the sites we frequent. Although he's not a blogger, he offered to post one of his recipes - and he chose plum jam.

And then, as a very awesome surprise, he sent me some of his homemade jam. And that's what I used in this recipe. Let me tell you, that jam is pretty darned awesome. Give it a try when plums are in season. You won't regret it!

Meanwhile, we have pie. Any thick jam, or even a lemon or lime curd would work in this. Something as thin as a jelly might be a problem though.

CatBoy Plum Jam Crostata
Recipe © by Do not republish without permission.
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup white wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar (plus more for sprinkling)
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1/2 cup water
1/2 to 1 cup plum jam (recipe here)
Eggwash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water)

Put the flours, salt, sugar, and vanilla bean paste in your food processor. Pulse a few times to combine.

Cut the butter into chunks and add it to the food processor. Pulse until you have pieces no larger than a pea. It's fine if there are one or two pieces that are slightly larger, but the majority should be pea-sized.

With the food processor running (and work quickly here) add the water as fast as the flour can absorb it, and continue processing until the dough forma a ball.

Stop the food processor and remove the dough. Quickly form it into a ball, and then flatten to a disk. Wrap it in plastic wrap an refrigerate at least an hour. It's fine if you continue the next day.

Preheat to 375 degrees and have a baking sheet and parchment paper (to fit the baking sheet) ready.

Flour your work surface and turn out the dough With a rolling pin, roll it into a rough circle about 14 inches in diameter. You don't have to be precise. Transfer the dough to the parchment paper. It's fine if it's hanging over the edges a bit.

Spread the jam over the surface of the dough, leaving a few inches around the edges uncovered. Again, you don't need to be precise.

Fold the edges of the dough - about 3-4 inches worth - over toward the center of the dough, working all around the dough until you have all the edges folded over and a few inches uncovered jam in the center. It really doesn't matter how much you fold over, how you pleat the dough, or how much is showing in the center. It's your creation.

Slide the parchment paper - with the crostata on it - onto the baking sheet.

Brush the exposed dough with the eggwash, and sprinkle with as much sugar as you like.

Bake the crostata at 375 degrees for 35 minutes, or until the pastry is nicely browned.

Let the crostata cool a few minutes on the pan, the slide the parchment paper onto a rack to cool. As soon as it's cool enough to handle, slide the crostata off the parchment and allow it to cool completely on the rack.

Slice into wedges to serve.

Want more PIE???

Check out these other great recipes!

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Thyme in our Kitchen made Chicken Pot Pie with Bacon and Butternut Squash
Miss in the Kitchen made Mini Lemon Pies
Diabetic Foodie made Crustless Crab and Asparagus Quiche
30a Eats made Tomato Pie
Foodhunter's Guide made Lemon Cheese Danish Pie