Plum Tart with No-Roll Linzer Crust


It started on PBS’s Caio Italia when Mary Ann Esposito made a custard plum tart.  The dessert looked truly amazing–but with a cup of cream in the filling, I admit that it scared me.  It hasn’t been a good summer for my weight :(.  What I  needed was a recipe that was a little lower in calories and a tad simpler in preparation.

Plum Tart on Table

Plum Tart Served

It was then that I remembered the pear tart I made last spring.  It was tasty and simple with a “pat in” crust.  What if I started with my old fruit tart but gave it some more pizzazz–like a Linzer crust?

Plum Tart

Plum Tart with Linzer Crust

Linzer torte is a classic Austrian dessert with a citrusy, spiced crust, a filling of raspberry jam and a dressy lattice top.  The flavor of the crust, with its ground nuts, citrus and spices is key to its distinctiveness.  Yes, that should be a great compliment to the sweet-sour freshness of the plums!  And if I skipped the top crust, this might just work!

I went through a few versions of the crust (first, too boring; second, too much orange zest; third time, hooray!) before arriving at the final version.  Served at a casual dessert event, it met the mark of a true hit–my stepfather dropped in the next day for leftovers!

Plum Tart

Plum Tart

Plum Tart with Linzer Crust



  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1 t cardamom (or 1/2 t ginger)
  • 1/4 cloves
  • 1/4 allspice
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 1/2 t orange zest
  • 3/4 c whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 c all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup finely ground hazelnuts or almonds
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 egg yolk


  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cold margarine or butter
  • 4-5 large ripe plums, stone removed and sliced (about 1/3-inch thick)


1.  Preheat the oven to 400.

2.  Make the crust. In food processor, mix together flour, sugar and spices for crust.  When well combined, add butter in pieces and egg yolk, pulsing until it looks like brown sugar.  Transfer the dough to an 11 inch tart pan and press the dough down with your fingers till it covers the bottom of the pan and edges a little up the side. Note: the crust above the “fruit line” tended to brown a lot so going just slightly up the sides worked well for me.

Blend Crust Ingredients

Blend Crust Ingredients

Pat Crust in Tart Pan

Pat Crust in Tart Pan

3.  Make the crumb topping.  Combine 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, and the butter. Mix together in food processor (or with fingers) until crumbly.

Plum Tart Sugar Topping

Plum Tart Sugar Topping

4.  Assemble your tart. Starting on the outside, arrange the plum slices in concentric circles over the pastry. Sprinkle the sugar crumb topping over the top.

Layer Fruit on Crust

Layer Fruit on Crust

Plum Tart Filled

Plum Tart Filled

Top Fruit with Sugar Topping

Top Fruit with Sugar Topping

5.  Place a piece of foil or a baking sheet on the lower oven rack to protect the oven from dripping juice while the tart is baking–or place tart pan on cookie sheet or in jelly roll pan.  Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until shiny, thick bubbles are erupting from the fruit and the crust is beginning to brown. Cool on a rack. Serve warm or room temperature.

Plum Tart

Plum Tart (Up Close)

6.  Enjoy!

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  1. This linzer tart looks exquisite my friend 😀
    Stunning job!

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. I remember the photos 🙂 And I’m bookmarking this one as the spices and seasonings are so delectable !

  3. I’m ready to make this now! It looks and sounds delicious.

  4. What a gorgeous dessert!

  5. No-roll crust? Lifesaver!

  6. This looks amazing!!!! Will definitely have to try this ASAP…well, after the clean eating is over 🙂

  7. I find using no roll crusts so much easier than the other, difficult crusts. Your tart looks heavenly!!!

  8. This looks exquisite and it doesn’t look too labor intensive…looks like I’ll have to pick-up some plums at the farmer’s market this weekend. Thanks for another great recipe! 🙂

  9. It’s absolutely gorgeous. I have a gift card floating around that I may have to use on a tart pan.

  10. How beautiful!

  11. Your tart is gorgeous!! Love that it doesn’t require so much time to make…I’m definitely bookmarking!

  12. Wow! Absolutely gorgeous!

  13. Delectable Inger…As I was reading this post, I couldn’t help thinking to myself how wonderfully your blog has evolved. The new look really brought it to a whole other level!!!

    Your Plum Tart sounds like something this girl may just be able to handle. I don’t have any plums but I do have freshly picked peaches that Katie’s kids gave us today. I bet they would work too!!! If I’m feeling ambitious, I may try it. If I do, I will be sure to let you know.

    Thank you so much for sharing…I love the notion that you are having such fun!!!

    • Peaches would work wonderfully Louise. I have done versions successfully with pears, peaches and plums. When I did apples they were too dry to create the glaze, so I believe the key is to use a fruit with a lot of juice. Thanks so much for your kind words–it really means a lot! I have really appreciated all of your support!

  14. that is astonishingly beautiful, inger! i’m such a perfectionist, i wouldn’t rest until the rings were just right. 🙂

    • All of your desserts are sooo beautiful, Grace! It’s all I can do to find some that look good with basic skills! But one time I did start the fruit on one of these in the center– that was totally impossible and I had to take everything off and try again 😉 Learned my lesson!

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  16. Your plum tart looks sooooo yummy, Inger!

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