Being home this past week in Oregon has been absolutely lovely. Between spending lots of time with my newly retired parents, catching up on my own wedding planning, and taking part in fun wedding activities with my beautiful friend Jade (she got married yesterday!), I didn’t even mind the wet, rainy weather that’s been pouring down around me. In fact, I’ve kind of enjoyed it, because it made all those activities feel slightly more cozy; snuggled inside protected against the cold pitter-patter of the open air. This past weekend my friends and I threw Jade a bridal shower and I agonized for a brief period of time about what to make. Jade is a gluten-free lady, so I knew I wanted to make a dessert with nuts and incorporate nuts into the crust of the dish. It was only a few hours later (what can I say, I’m a bit slow) that the heavens parted and I realized that caramel was gluten-free. Huzzah! And the salted caramel roasted nut tart was born. It was my first expedition into gluten-free baking, and while the crust was a bit fluffier than the gluten-rich tart crusts I’d made before, it tasted just as wonderful as any of the others. Everyone loved the tart and took home pieces to eat again later. We also had second helpings while we were there, because we were having such a good time that the bridal shower ended up lasting about eight hours (yep, we ladies like to chat). I’ve listed options in the ingredients for making a gluten-free and gluten-rich version, (basically, you can use 3/4 cup rice flour or regular flour), so that everyone can partake no matter what their gluten preference may be. You will also have a bit extra salted caramel sauce left over, (about 1/3 cup) which I recommend saving and drizzling over ice cream or any of your other favorite treats. Enjoy!

Salted Caramel Roast Nut Tart

Course Dessert
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Refrigeration Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Author Eva Kosmas Flores

Ingredients

Crust

  • 3/4 Cup Almond Meal
  • 3/4 Cup Rice Flour gluten-free or Regular Flour (gluten-rich)
  • 1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Cup Butter
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg

Filling

  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 3/4 Cup Butter
  • 2/3 Cup Walnuts
  • 1/2 Cup Pecans
  • 2/3 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Disaronno Liqueur

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Evenly spread the nuts out on a large baking sheet and roast them in the oven for 8 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  2. To make the crust, mix together all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Cut the butter over the bowl into roughly pea-sized pieces. Stir the mixture, then add the egg and beat the crust with an electric mixture using the dough attachment until a nice and smooth dough forms. Place the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to get it to harden up a bit.
  3. Then remove the dough from the refrigerator and press it into a well-greased 9-inch tart pan. Poke a few holes in the bottom of the tart with a fork, and then place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes, peeking at it every 5 minutes to vigorously poke any air bubbles that may be forming underneath the crust with your fork. If you notice the edges of the crust are browning more quickly than the base of the crust, wrap some tin foil around the crust's edge and place it back in the oven. The crust will be finished when you notice that the base of the crust is just starting to have the slightest golden tinge on some of the more raised areas. Remove the crust from the oven and allow it to cool completely before removing the sides of the tart pan.
  4. To make the filling, heat the sugar in a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. The sugar will begin to melt, once it is completely melted and begins to boil, stop stirring. It should be a nice deep caramel color. Add the butter and stand back a bit as the caramel will hiss. Stir quickly until all of the butter is melted and fully incorporated into the melted sugar. Remove the pan from the heat, set it on a cool surface (like a hot plate you've just removed from the refrigerator), and add the heavy cream, whisking until a nice smooth caramel sauce forms. Add the disaronno and whisk until fully incorporated. Stop whisking and allow the caramel to cool to room temperature. Then stir in the salt.
  5. To assemble your tart, evenly space about half of the nuts on top of the crust. Pour the cooled salted caramel sauce into the crust over the nuts, leaving about an inch of space between the caramel and the top of the crust. Sprinkle the remaining nuts onto the tart. Wait a few minutes for the caramel level to rise, and add more caramel sauce if necessary until the sauce is about 1/4 inch from the top of the crust. Store the tart in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it. Reserve the remaining salted caramel sauce to drizzle over your dessert of choice!
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