There are so many things to love about this pie that I don’t even know where to begin. Perfect pastry? Naturally. A gooey, nutty heavenly cream hidden inside, called something as intriguing and promising as Frangipane? YES. A sticky, tangy, shocking purple coating of plum? Check.
Also, it’s so effing autumnally and comforting you just wanna curl up and use it as a blanket. Seriously, an evening with this pie + pitch black outside + rain against the window + a couple of episode of Looking/The Honourable Woman/The Mindy Project (season 3 – yeah!)/Louie/River Cottage = perfect life. Summer: you’re free to go.
Wait, before you run off looking for a plum tree, I must give you a few more words on Frangipane. Frangipane will MAKE YOUR LIFE BETTER. It’s part of a fine old Italian, then French, baking tradition (dating back to 1226 according to some, read Wikipedia). It’s made out of egg, butter, sugar and ground almonds. And you can use it in, like, everything. Like, all over the place. In cakes, cookies and croissants. Think of it as a melted and golden version of marzipan. A rule of thumb is: since it’s so gooey it normally needs a host. Or does it now…?
For this recipe I’ve used a mix of almonds and hazelnuts, which, yes, granted, might upset the Italians and the French but that’s a risk I’m willing to take, considering the result. Sweet-gooey hazelnut with sour-sticky plum, you see what I’m saying, right?