A speciality of Brittany in France, a Far Breton is a pastry-less custard tart with prunes which is often served with a glass of cold cider. It is good with a coffee after dinner or even as a sweet breakfast.
Makes 1 x 12 inch Far Breton
220g tin of stoned prunes in syrup or juice, drained and halved
120g plain flour
100g caster sugar
4 whole eggs
1 tablespoon Cognac or rum
Icing sugar to dust
1. Preheat the oven to 200C/425F/Gas 7. Grease a 12 inch baking dish with the butter and place the prune halves in the bottom, spreading them out evenly.
2. Whisk the flour and caster sugar together in a large bowl. Whisk the eggs, milk and Cognac or rum together lightly. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients gradually, until they are all incorporated. Whisk until you have a smooth batter.
3. Place the baking tin onto the rack of the oven and pour the mixture over the prunes (it stops the mixture spilling when you put it in the oven). Stir the prunes gently with a spoon to lift them so they rise to the top, nudging them so they are evenly spaced. Bake the Far Breton for 40-50 minutes (check after 40 minutes as ovens vary). When the tart is golden, puffed up with golden edges and ‘set’ in the middle, it is done. Leave to firm up a little if you are serving it warm. Dust with icing sugar before serving.
– If you are using Pruneaux d’Agen (Agen prunes) instead of prunes from a tin which usually come with syrup, soak them for 15 minutes in the Cognac or rum in the recipe ingredients above, reserving the liquid to add to the recipe.
– You can use half cream, half milk instead of all milk if you want to make a richer tart.
– Serve the tart warm or cold. If you are serving it warm at a later stage, undercook it slightly so that the centre wobbles, leave to cool and return it to the oven at 200C/400F/Gas 6 for 8-10 minutes to reheat.
– Though not traditional, this tart is good served warm with a bowl of hot melted chocolate and a jug of chilled cream.
– Use tinned black cherries or fresh stoned cherries for a Cherry Far Breton, not as traditional but still as good to eat.
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