CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to France Magazines today CLICK HERE

Recipe: tarte aux abricots

PUBLISHED: 09:34 04 August 2015 | UPDATED: 11:07 02 September 2015

Tarte aux abricots © Snap and Stir

Tarte aux abricots © Snap and Stir


Indulge in a classic French pastry by following our recipe for tarte aux abricots

Can there be a more beautiful fruit than the apricot? Not only do they look striking with their pink blush, they feel as soft and sensuous as velvet. In fact, throughout its history, the apricot has inspired many people, including artists such as Cézanne and the leading art critic of Victorian England, John Ruskin, who wrote of the fruit, “shining in a sweet brightness of golden velvet”. However, it is important to note that the pinkish-red bloom on an apricot is a sign that the fruit is not yet fully ripe – not perhaps so good for eating fresh, but actually rather perfect for a tart.

The apricot is a member of the rose family and is related to plums, peaches and cherries. Thought to have originated in China where it has been cultivated for more than two thousand years, its popularity gradually spread and apricots are now grown commercially across the globe including in France. In fact, France is said to be the world’s fifth largest producer of apricots, which grow in abundance in the temperate climate found in the south-east corner of the country including Rhône-Alpes and Provence, and into Languedoc-Roussillon.

Like the fruit itself, recipes for apricots are plentiful, including, of course, tarte aux abricots. Traditionally this dessert included the use of the stones, which were crushed and scattered over the pastry base along with ground almonds, adding an extra intensity and slightly bitter almond flavour.

My favourite type of tart has a layer of frangipane – a nutty cream-like paste made with sugar, eggs and ground almonds – but you will find many variations of this around France. Some are cooked in a custard base, while others are simply arranged over ground almonds on a puff pastry round and baked until golden. The base can also be a sweetened bread dough, where the tips of the fruit are lightly charred, before then being glazed with homemade apricot jam.

I’ll never forget my first trip to Paris, staring through the window of an elegant pâtisserie in the Marais. In among an array of jewel-like pastries was perhaps the must luscious of all, a tarte aux abricots with golden tipped apricots atop a thin pastry base, set out in concentric circles and glossed with a jam glaze – simply heavenly.


Serves 8


I have made this in a 12x32cm rectangular tart tin, but you could also use a 23cm round tin.

• 1 x 280g packet shortcrust pastry

• 100g unsalted butter

• 100g caster sugar

• 2 eggs, lightly beaten

• 1 tsp vanilla extract

• 100g ground almonds

• 12 medium-sized fresh apricots, halved and stoned


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan. Place a baking sheet on the middle shelf to get hot (this will help crisp up the base of the tart). Unroll the pastry and fold in half and then in quarters. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to form a rectangle a little larger than a 12x32cm fluted tart tin. Press well into the base and sides allowing a little pastry to hang over the edges. Prick the base with a fork and chill for a further 20 minutes.

2. Place a sheet of baking paper in the pastry-lined tin and fill with baking beans, then bake for 15 minutes until the edges of the pastry are golden brown. Remove the baking paper and beans, and leave the pastry shell to cool. Once cooled, use a small sharp knife to trim the overhanging pastry so it is flush with the edges of the tin.

3. Place the butter and sugar in a food processor and blend until smooth, then add in the eggs, vanilla and ground almonds, and blend until evenly combined. Spoon the mixture into the pastry shell, and press the apricot halves well down into top. Transfer to the oven and bake for 40 minutes until firm and golden (cover with foil if the pastry starts to get too dark).

4. Remove from the oven and allow the tart to cool for 30 minutes or so. Serve at room temperature with a little fresh cream.

More recipes: cherry clafoutis and cheese soufflé

Article by Living France Living France

More from Language and Culture

Thursday, November 15, 2018

France has historically been on the leading edge of eco-friendly projects and regulations. While many argue that much more needs to be done to meet environmental goals in France and globally, here are 11 ways that French government, companies and people are striving to be green.

Read more
Wednesday, November 14, 2018

What’s in a name? A lot, it turns out. Find out the fascinating stories behind the names of these places in France featuring dragons, gods and Sardinian kings.

Read more
Thursday, November 1, 2018

Michel and Alain Roux have unveiled the menu at their new French-inspired riverside brasserie, Roux at Skindles

Read more
Friday, September 21, 2018

As a floating restaurant opens in Paris, we take a look at some of the city’s alternative dining experiences, involving famous rail carriages, secret doorways and eating in total darkness.

Read more
Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Kate Mosse was a guest speaker at the Cheltenham Literature Festival in October 2018 and spoke about finding inspiration for her latest book – and beginning of a new series of novels set in France – The Burning Chambers.

Read more
Culture and attractions
Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Agnès Poirier’s latest book explores the history of Paris 1940–1950 and the influential people that lived through the time. The French writer spoke about her book this year at the Cheltenham Literature Festival.

Read more
Friday, November 30, 2018

Gather the family and see how many of these animals you can name in French

Read more
Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Want to take your French language skills further? These tips will have you chatting and joking away with the locals in no time!

Read more
Learning French
Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Pigs, processions and high prices - why truffle season is a serious business in France

Read more
Monday, October 1, 2018

If you’re looking for a great wine to take home to impress your guests, you can now discover the best bottles in your neighbourhood at the touch of a button

Read more
Subscribe for

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

France Forum

Questions about France? Visit our free France forum to get help and advice from thousands of other Francophiles and expats. Topics include: property, tax, law, travelling, pets, education, healthcare and much more.

Join the forum

Most Read

Join us on social media

France magazine
Living France magazine
French Property News magazine

Enter our competitions

Win books, DVDs, travel and even holidays in France in our great competitions! Take a look at our latest competitions…

Enter now