Mango is the perfect fruit but it rarely crosses my mind to enjoy it any other way than with my bare hands over the kitchen sink. I do like a good mango lassi on occasions but there are so many other possibilities from compote and chutneys to more savory preparations. Today I used them in the same way I would for a tarte fine aux pommes, on a circle of puff pastry with a purée of the fruit underneath the thin slices of mangoes, brushed with butter and sprinkled with sugar. The baking concentrates the flavors, the mangoes become incredibly luscious and literally melt into the caramelized crust, a lime syrup is brushed on top while still warm with a dusting of lime zest to finish it off. If I had to rate this dessert on a deliciousness scale from 1 to 10 this would definitely be a 11.
The success of this recipe almost entirely depends on the quality of the fruit. I used perfectly ripe (the skin starts to wrinkle) Ataulfo mangoes from Mexico which are flooding the markets right now if you’re living in the US. They are also known as Champagne, Honey or Manila mangoes. The flesh is velvety smooth, with almost no fibrous texture and a wafer-thin pit. I would pick them other the Tommy Atkins kind any day. If you don’t count the 35 minutes baking time this can be assembled in 10 minutes or less and taste like you worked on it all day. Enjoy!
Mango Tart with Lime
- Serves 2 to 4
For the mango tart:
- One 8-inch round of high-quality puff pastry
- 4 to 5 ripe mangoes (preferably Ataulfo, Champagne, Manila)
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1/3 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 lime
For the mango tart with lime:
- Preheat oven to 375′F. Cut the ends of the mangoes and peel them by running a small sharp knife underneath the skin. Slice each half along the pit and reserve on a plate. Cut the remaining flesh around the pit and chop roughly.
- Place the chopped mango in a small saucepan with 2 or 3 tablespoons of water and a sprinkle of sugar and cook over medium heat until very soft and most of the liquid has evaporated. Blend in a food processor to make a smooth puree. Cool.
- Place the round of puff pastry on a baking tray lined with a silpat or parchment paper. Prick with a fork all over except for a 1/4-inch border. Spread out a thin layer of the cooled mango compote on top of the pastry but keep the 1/4-inch border. Slice the mango halves and overlap them in a fan pattern on top of the mango compote leaving the border intact. Brush the mango slices with the melted butter and sprinkle with sugar. Place the tray in the hot oven and bake for 35 minutes, or until the pastry is puffed around the edges, golden brown and caramelized.
- Meanwhile place the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil to make a syrup. Squeeze half the lime in the sugar syrup. Brush the hot lime syrup over the mango tart and grate some lime zest all over it using a microplane grater. Serve warm or at room temperature.