Saturday, November 15, 2008

Tart Hunt

The French Country Apple Tart is an elusive pastry, here caught sunning near the south entrance to Govenor Nelson State Park near Lake Mendota.

Country Apple TartIf captured in the wild, be aware of its natural ability to slip between your teeth undetected, releasing a mildly tart apple taste as a defense mechanism.
This particular dessert was a bit soggy and dull despite an appealing presentation. Although pretty in its winter coat and rustic dessert cup, you're better off hunting one of the region's other tarts, season permitting.

Cranberry Walnut TartThe Cranberry Walnut Tart, for instance, makes a better impression as a holiday dessert, breakfast, or tea.
A hearty pastry, its nutty, buttery taste is held together by a heavenly crunch of sugar, walnuts, and crisp, sweetened cranberries. The Cranberry Walnut's endangered status is due to its chances (slim to none) of making the short trip from Madison to Milwaukee uneaten.
Another passeriforme, this species (tartus migratorius) is from the seasonal tart family, most commonly found in southern Wisconsin from mid-October through late December.
*IUFTD Red List:
Hubbard Avenue Pumpkin Pie - Endangered
Clasen's French Country Apple Tart - Least Concern
Clasen's Cranberry Walnut Tart - Critically Endangered
*International Union For Thanksgiving Dessert


  1. Every time I think of the word "Tart" reminds me the urban dictionary's description of a "nubile young temptress, who dresses teasingly and provocatively".
    However.....I'm having a hard time choosing here?
    I must be getting old because your "Cranberry Walnut Tart" is makin me weak in the knees!

  2. Why not pull a Castanza and try to have both at the same time, James.
    How you holding up in the red state decline?
    Do I need to send you some pie.
    A tart perhaps?

  3. The red state decline doesn't worry me near as bad as the stock market decline!
    Hey, if I pull a Castanza...that means I can have my tart and eat it too!

  4. Ha, ha, ha, that's right, James. I think he was eating pastrami.
    But gas prices finally dipped below $2.00 here, so yippe yo ka bleepin' yaye.

  5. Those look stunningly delicious!

  6. Well, the cranberry walnut was, Beckie. The apple was surprisingly bland. There are two more I hope to try this week that I normally wouldn't pick up.

  7. Oh Jenna you're so funny! I loved that first photo. :) But the cranberry tart does look good!

  8. Hey Lisa, this post was done with you in mind, you talented little birder you!
    Funny how I was attracted to the apple, but the cranberry—remember to stop by Clasens next time you're down here. Considering how many Germans in this state, they really are a definitive WI bakery.

  9. Hey Olga, I have to check out your new blog some more. Your Chico boy done real good yesterday, hon'.
    Those crusts were good. Crusts are so important and so few do them justice. But I'd have to say the tarts are all about the filling. Maybe I'll have to buy more to make sure.

  10. Too funny--I love tart and would endanger any living in my area.

  11. Hey Green Girl, I'm off to endanger a few more tarts. This blog will be the death of me yet.

  12. ENDANGERED tarts?! Bwahahaha! I've never heard (uh, read) that one.

    Thanks for making my mouth water. Sheesh, talk about slobbering all over a keyboard...

  13. Unfortunately, UH, the Common Two-Legged Tart is flourishing in the midwest.
    Am off on a pastry run later today.

  14. so what is the common unendagered tart? I noticed you put pumpkin tart as "endangered" but...didn't show a picture. Even for a cranberries come in a can person like me, that tarts looks real good. (and the apple, it looks great, but appearances can be deceiving.)

  15. Hi Spunky, how's the wrist?
    The common tart is often found in mall and open areas, especially during warmer months.
    That's the pumpkin pie from the previous post. Doing a running tally to try to decide what to bring to Milwaukee on Thanksgiving.
    That cranberry tart may make a brief appearance during the holidays. It was good.
    Oh c'mon, you're a pasty chef or the like, don't give me the cran in a can biz.

  16. These tarts all look exquisite but you really should stop leaving food in that wood Jeanna :D :D

  17. Different wood, Jim, but that's where they nest.

  18. Crap that looks good. I'm about to pass out. Cranberry walnut Good thing I don't bake, or I'd eat about 12 of these and then scarf them all and go into diabetic shock.

    In reading your comments, it's looking like these came from a bakery, is that right? I feel better already. Though a trip to Wisconsin might be in my future... ;)

  19. Hi J., that's right they came from Clausen's in Middleton. I'm about to kick off baking season today by buying flour.
    The cranberry tart was very good.
    There's one bakery up north somewhere that's supposed to be the best, but I can't remember the name.
    Hubbard Ave. Diner in Middleton may have the best pies if you're a pie person and The Rolling Pin in Fitchburg has the best presentation, fruit turnovers, and scones.

  20. Oh, good lord! You've got me craving tarts now! But not the kind Jimmy was referring to! ;)

  21. Hope you're well C., and if you ever do, just don't buy them drinks first.


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