Saturday, November 10, 2012

Simple Nut Tart

dinner parties
stump me

being trained in pastry
there is a certain expectation
dessert will be served
it will be from scratch
not a problem
(particlarly when preparing
a full and complicated dinner)
i don't want to finish
with a
substantial & heavy dessert

a simple nut tart
served with
strong coffee
paired with 
a bowl of clementines
is just the trick

 Simple Nut Tart
1 pastry crust, pressed into an 8" square tart tin--baked blind
1 cups walnut--toasted
1 1/2 cups pecans--toasted
1 cup almonds--toasted
1/2 cup pine nuts--toasted
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbs honey
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup water
1 oz whiskey
preheat oven to 350. place all nuts in a large bowl and mix until well combined.  put brown sugar, granulated sugar, honey salt and water in a heavy saucepan.  stir well, place on medium heat and bring to a simmer.  allow to boil for about 3 minutes.  carefully add the whiskey and bring back to a boil.  boil for 2 more minutes.  the sugar should get a bit syrupy, but should not smoke or turn excessively dark.  keep a constant eye on the sugar.  remove the sugar from heat and tip in the nuts.  stir well, giving each nut a coat of syrup.  immediately tip into the baked crust, gently and spreading to cover the entire crust. pop into the oven for 5-7 minutes. remove from oven and allow to cool before serving.

-add orange juice in place of some water in caramel; a pinch of orange zest & a sprinkle of cinnamon to the nuts
-the addition of fresh rosemary when stirring the nuts into the caramel (light hand) make for a beautiful winter tart
--drizzle with bittersweet chocolate or drench in dark ganache
-substitute vanilla for whiskey
-be creative!


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