Trudie Styler and Sting’s Sweet Nothings – Apricot Tart

Jul 9, 2013 by

Photo by Fabrizio Ferri

Photo by Fabrizio Ferri


A few weeks ago, I met Trudie Styler at the launch of her product line ‘Il Palagio’, sourced from her garden in Tuscany. Honeys that range from mild and unimposing, such as, Acacia to fuller bodied honeys, like chestnut and thousand flowers. Wines whimsically named after Sting’s songs – Sister Moon and When We Dance. Olive oil so pure, leaving you to decide where to apply it; skin or salad?




Sanjay, Trudie, Eli and me


As the conversation progressed, Trudie shared how she and their family chef, Joe Sponzo, gather ingredients from their backyard for evening supper be it at The Lakehouse in the U.K or Il Palagio in Italy. And a cook book was born – The Lake House Cookbook. With the bounty this British countryside home has to offer, there are many hearty dishes, such as, roast chicken with corn and broad beans, rolled lamb and pies and tarts to keep company with on rainy days.




Trudie and Chef Joe shared their recipe for Apricot tart. The tart from it’s very almond shell alone hints at something of pastoral origins – textured and rustic, topped with dreamy pastry cream and delicate apricot halves.


Recipe adapted from The Lake House Cookbook for Apricot tart


Almond nut crust

½ cup whole almonds, with skin

½ cup + 2 tbsp. unsalted butter

1/3 cup + 1 tbsp. sugar

¼ tsp. pure almond extract

1 cup + 1 tbsp. flour

 Pastry Cream

2 egg yolks

2 ½ tbsp.superfine sugar

1tbsp. flour

1/2 cup milk

1/4 vanilla bean, scraped and reserving bean and pods


1 1/3 cups sugar

2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise

3 pounds ripe apricots, halved and pitted (If they are not ripe, wrap them in a brown paper bag and leave in the oven for a day)




1)   Pulse almonds in food processor until chopped. Add butter, sugar and almond extract and pulse until combined

2)   Add flour in 3 batches, pulsing 30 seconds after each addition. Once it forms in to a dough ball, wrap in plastic shaping in 6” disc. Chill for 1 hour

3)   Butter and flour 10” tart tin. Remove chilled pastry. Place it in tart shell and press down and out to spread it over base and sides. Refrigerate 2 hours

4)   Once chilled, remove shell and prod with fork throughout shell. Line shell with pie weights or uncooked beans and bake at 425F for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Reduce temp to 325F and removing lining and beans, bake another 15 minutes until golden-brown

Pastry Cream

5)   Place yolks and half the sugar in a small bowl. Sift flour and mix thoroughly. Heat milk in a saucepan with remaining sugar and vanilla pod and bean. Bring to boil, stirring. Add a ¼ cup of hot milk to temper mixture and stir constantly. Remove from heat and add remaining milk. Return to medium heat and whisk until it bubbles and thickens for 10 seconds. Remove from heat and cover surface with plastic wrap to avoid skin formation. Chill on iced water/ refrigerate for 20 minutes


6)   Remove the apricot skin by peeling back with a knife. Remove the pit


7)   Remove tart shell from pan on to serving plate

8)   Spread pastry cream evenly over the bottom of pastry. Arrange apricot halves faced down in a circular pattern

















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