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Cathy Katin-Grazzini

Cathy's Kitchen Prescription LLC


Sugar Plum Fairy Tart

Plummy confections at holiday time surely evoke childhood memories of The Nutcracker with its magical kingdoms of snowflakes, flowers, and sweets. This fruit tart is kind to the planet. It uses a variety of very juicy ripe plums or pluots, a base of apricot paste, and a tasty gluten-free crust that is sweetened with dates and scented with Ceylon cinnamon and green cardamom. With no added fats or sugar, a warmed slice of Sugar Plum Fairy Tart is lovely for breakfast, teatime, or dessert. For a contrast in flavor and texture, garnish with a spoonful of soy crème fraiche.


Prep 2 passive hours to strain the yogurt, plus 45 minutes

Baking 1 hour          

Makes one 11-inch tart



½ cup apricot paste from 1 cup dried organic apricots

7 ripe same sized plums or pluots for filling and glaze, pitted, halved, cut in ⅜-inch slices

Juice of 1 lemon


Fruit Glaze

Leftover slices of plums or pluots

1/2 cup blueberries or chopped, peeled apple 



¼ cup chia seeds, freshly ground

¼ teaspoon Ceylon cinnamon powder, freshly ground

¼ teaspoon green cardamom seeds, freshly ground

1 cup buckwheat flour

1 cup gluten-free oat flour

1 cup dates, roughly chopped

1 medium banana, or 2 lady finger bananas, cut in 1-inch pieces

¼ cup chopped walnuts

½ teaspoon shiro (mild, white) miso

Garnish: 2 cups cultured, unsweetened soy yogurt, strained to make soy Crème Fraiche.


  • If you plan to garnish tart slices with Crème Fraiche, spoon the yogurt onto a square of unbleached muslin. Tie it up with string to make a bag and hang the bag over the sink or over a bowl for 2 hours. During this time, the yogurt will thicken and become creamier. Scrape the crème fraiche into a small container. Use a mini whisk to whip it and smooth its appearance. Refrigerate until use.
  • Preheat oven to 375° F.
  • Place the dried apricots in a small nonmetallic bowl, cover with water, and microwave for 2 minutes. Alternatively, simmer on a stovetop for 2 minutes. Cool. Transfer the fruit with as much of its soaking water as needed to a high-speed blender. Run until you produce a smooth and creamy purée. It should have the consistency of soft jam. 
  • Place the sliced fruit in a medium bowl. A lemon juice and gently mix.
  • In a small saucepan add any scraps of sliced plums or pluots. Add chopped apple and/or blueberries for their pectin, which will help the juices congeal. Cook, covered, on a very low flame, adding a little water if the mix becomes dry. Cook until the fruit is extremely soft. Press through a strainer or sieve. This liquid becomes our pastry glaze. Use the pulp for another purpose.
  • Use a coffee grinder to separately grind the chia seeds, Ceylon cinnamon stick, and green cardamom seeds.
  • Combine the buckwheat flour, oat flour, ground chia seeds, ground cinnamon and cardamon, chopped dates, banana pieces, chopped walnuts, and shiro miso in a food processor. Pulse repeatedly until you achieve a crumbly, moist dough that holds together when pressed. Do not overprocess. If it is too dry, add another piece of banana; if it is too moist, add a spoonful of oat flour.
  • Cut two 14-inch lengths of waxed paper. Place one on a large board and transfer the dough to it. Place the second piece of waxed paper on top. Press the dough to form a disk. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough evenly in a large circle that is 3/16-inch thick.
  • We will bake the tart in an 11-inch non-stick tart pan with a removeable bottom.
  • Peel back and remove the top wax paper sheet, invert the tart pan over the dough. Hold one palm firmly on top of the tart tin and the other beneath the cutting board, quickly flip them both over.
  • Remove the cutting board. Gently press dough into the bottom and sides of the tin. Trim the excess dough and use it to patch any cracks or holes. Wrap any remaining dough trimmings in plastic wrap for now.
  • Spread a thin layer of apricot paste over the entire interior of the tart dough.
  • Lay down the slices of plum or pluot, overlapping to create concentric circles, starting at the tin’s perimeter facing the slices in one direction, with the interior circle facing in the other direction.  For the very center use a few thin small slices, gently folded around each other to suggest a rose.
  • Brush on a nice coat of apricot glaze over the fruit
  • Bake the tart for 20 minutes. Check the color of the crust. If it is darkening, cover with a crust guard or foil. Continue to bake for another 30 to 45 minutes or until fruit is tender with its juices bubbling. Test the fruit: If a knife can easily pierce it, the tart is ready.
  • Remove from oven. If the tart has produced a lot of juice, use a pastry brush to glaze the tart’s fruit with it. If not, brush on a final coating of apricot glaze.
  • Transfer the tart to a cooling rack. Allow the tart’s juices to congeal as the tart cools before attempting to slice it.
  • Taking great care not to scratch the pan, gently use a butter knife to loosen any bits of crust that have adhered to the side of the tin. Then push the bottom of the pan up to release the tart from the pan and slide it onto your serving plate.
  • Serve Sugar Plum Fairy Tart warm with a dollop of soy Crème Fraîche.


Sugar Plum Fairy Tart

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