I keep a three ring binder of pages sporting short hand scribbles, butter smudges and tomato paste drops. These are my recipes. Recipes I've developed over the years; some by happenstance and others with much forethought.
Yesterday, as the negative temperature wind whipped powdery snow down the streets of Midwest America and my three boys on yet another snow day played (far too much) Wii, I baked. More importantly, I invented. And it felt spectacular to be at it again.
Of course, invention in baking isn't all that doable. Nothing new under the sun, right? Unless you are doing molecular gastronomy or something, I suppose.
I have been super duper addicted to The Great British Bake-Off on TV. And after my trip last year to the coast of England and living in a small town with a bonafide British tea shop...lets just say, I have British baked goods fever. Bad. Real bad.
This is my take on the British Bakewell tart...with a bit of Frangipane-esque and Pop-Tart-ness in there too. Whatever its origin or name, I'm staking claim to this nutty, fruit-filled little gem. It was intended for dessert. But was consumed by 3pm. I think it actually would make a perfect breakfast. For the record, it is gluten free and low-carb too.
I have made the almond flour in my Vitamix with raw almonds. I waited 10 years to finally get a Vitamix (those puppies aren't cheap) but my, they are so worth it. At any rate, you can purchase almond meal at most grocery stores in the healthy food section or online.
I had intended on making homemade jam for this, but time got away and instead I went a Sandra Lee route and did a semi-homemade jam~ which was gorgeous and full of the right flavor and consistency.
Almond Raspberry Frangipane Tart
1 1/2 cup Almond meal
1/4 cup sugar (you could substitute any other granulated sweetener)
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1 egg white
1/2 jar store bought (or homemade) all-fruit jam (no sugar)
1 small package of fresh raspberries
splash of sweet red wine or water
3/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup softened butter (I used Kerrygold)
1/4 cup sugar (again, you could substitute other sweetener option)
1 egg yolk (left over from your crust)
Slivered almonds (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 325F. Lightly grease 4 small tart shells or one large 9" one
2. In a bowl combine almond flour, sugar and salt. Sprinkle the chopped butter into the bowl and use your fingers to break up the chunks and incorporate into the flour until it resembles sand. (Alternatively you could use the food processor for this step.)
3. Stir in the egg white until the dough comes together. Divide evenly among the tart shells and press into the bottom and up the sides evenly with your fingers.
4. Place tart pans in the freezer for 15 minutes.
5. Remove from the freezer and prick the bottom of the shells with a fork. Bake 10 minutes. Remove and let cool 15 minutes on a wire rack.
6. If the shells have puffed, use the rounded part of a spoon the gently press the tart shell to let air out.
7. While the tarts bake, simmer jam, berries and liquid in a saucepan until bubbly and the berries have begun breaking down. Remove from the heat and set aside.
8. In a food processor or bowl, combine the filling ingredients; almond meal, butter, sugar, egg and yolk. Mix or process until smooth and creamy (this will be thick).
8. Spread a dollop of jam along the bottom of each tart shell. This should be thin, but not sparse.
9. Top the jam with a thick layer of filling, making sure to not go past the brim of the tart shell but staying just inside.
10. Sprinkle with additional slivered almonds, if desired.
11. Bake for 30 minutes or until puffed and set.
12. Remove from the oven and immediately, using a pastry brush, brush a thin coat of slightly warmed honey over the top. Let cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes before removing the tart pan.
13. Serve at room temperature or chilled. A dollop of whipped cream wouldn't be too shabby either.