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Apple Walnut Tart

Posted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:15 am
by sabha
1 ¼ Cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup (½ stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pats
¼ cup chilled solid vegetable shortening
3 to 4 tablespoons cold water

Prepare Pastry:
1. Combine flour and salt in medium-sized bowl. Cut in butter and shortening with pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Over mixture, tossing lightly with fork after each addition, until pastry is just moist enough to hold together. Shape pastry into disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill 1 hour or until firm.

2. Preheat oven to hot (400°)

3. Roll pastry out on lightly floured surface with lightly floured rolling pin into a 13 inch circle. Fit into 11 inch tart pan with removable bottom. Fold over-hang over and press to reinforce side of tart. Line pastry with aluminum foil. Fill with pie weights or dried beans.

4. Bake tart shell in preheated over (400°) for 15 minutes. Remove foil and weights. Bake 5 to 10 minutes to brown.

1 ¼ cup walnuts
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
¼ teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

3 tart green apples, peeled, quartered, cored, cut into 1/8-inch-thick wedges
¼ cup honey

For Filling:

1. Combine walnuts, ¾ cup sugar, eggs, 1 tablespoon water, extracts and salt in food processor. Blend until soft paste forms. Add 4 tablespoons butter; blend 10 seconds. Spread in crust. Chill until firm, about 45 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, stir apples, 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon sugar in a large bowl. Let stand for 30 minutes.

3. Preheat oven to 400°F. Drain apples; overlap in concentric circles atop filling. Melt 2 tablespoons butter; brush over apples. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar.

4. Cover exposed areas of crust with foil to prevent excessive browning. Bake tart 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350°F. Bake until apples are tender, about 45 minutes. Transfer to rack. Heat honey in a microwave about 15 – 30 seconds until thin. Brush over apples. Cool. (Can be made 8 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature).

My Notes:

The original recipe called for almonds in place of the walnuts, brandy in place of the water and a shell which was more cake-like. I made the modifications originally because I didn’t have some of those ingredients and I think it worked out fine. The original is a “French Apple-Almond Tart” from Bon Appétit October 1997. I have since tried almonds and substituted McIntosh apples successfully. Once I mistakenly omitted the eggs from the nut filling and I personally like the filling better that way (delicious for spreading on breads and stuff – which I wouldn’t do with the raw eggs). The eggs seem to puff up the filling a bit during cooking and the apples adhere better when the eggs are included. This is recipe takes a long time to prepare – I think my record is about 3 hours from start to finish, but it isn’t all work time.