Rainy days and a cranberry tart

Rain!

I love baking when it’s rainy, or really just doing anything when it’s rainy. I even like walking in it! Maybe because I lived in the pacific northwest for awhile, who knows.

We finally got some here in SF – and oddly enough, my autoimmune temperature disregulation stuff calms way down when it’s actively raining, or when the humidity is super high (bizarre, I know. If anyone has ANY insight into this…. please let me know!!) – so I definitely welcomed the day of respite. Plus, I love rain anyway, so no complaints there.

In other news, it’s mid-December already, what?! Insanity. It feels like it was just my birthday in September, and now we’re almost to the end of the year. To that end, I wanted to make something ridiculously “festive” and wintery – enter this cranberry curd tart! I’m in LOVE with the color. None of the photos are edited! This is just the unreal color that it naturally is.

It sounds complicated but really isn’t – basically just a riff on lemon curd, with the extra step of cooking the cranberries (which is fun anyway, I love listening to them pop). The tart itself comes together very quickly once the curd is made – all told, it’s in the oven for less than 30 min. The curd can be made in advance too, since it keeps really well in the fridge – and actually, the color deepens a little if you let it rest overnight. Fun!

See! Curd straight out of the fridge, after resting overnight.

We’ve had more gorgeous sunsets lately – a few that were worth climbing out my window onto the roof for photos. I happen to have the only apartment in my building that has direct roof access, so I try to take advantage…. I took the screen out of the window for that reason!

C and I also took a midweek mental health break walk over at Fort Funston – hands down our favorite beach out here. It was a beautiful, salty and humid 6 miles – perfect.

I hope all is well as can be in your worlds. I’m here to bring a little color to my corner of the internet and wish you a festive season, in spite what is happening in the world. Regardless of my own personal health stuff, I can always find joy in baking, and I hope that is true for you too! At the very least, you can come over here and look at pretty pictures, that’s good too :) Happy December baking!

Cranberry Curd Tart with a Cinnamon Cornmeal Crust

Refined sugar free & gluten free. Crust is easily grain free – just swap out the cornmeal for an equal volume of almond flour (or more shredded coconut). The curd can be made well in advance if desired – it keeps well in the fridge for several days. A Wait are those Cookies original, inspired by a New York Times tart that keeps cropping up in my feeds. Yield: 1 9″ tart, serves several.

For the crust

1.5 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c cornmeal
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, sea salt, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.

Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a 9″ tart pan (w/ removable bottom; or alternatively a pie plate) with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge. Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes. Increase oven temp to 375.

Cranberry Curd

1 bag of cranberries, about 2 cups
1/2 c freshly squeeze orange + lemon juice (I used 4 small mandarins + 2 lemons)
1/4 c water
zest of 1 lemon
4 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 c maple syrup
1 whole egg
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla

In a saucepan over medium high, heat cranberries, citrus juice, water and lemon zest until cranberries pop, about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Once the berries are very saucy, remove from heat and puree with an immersion blender (or a food processor). Strain the puree through a fine mesh sieve, pressing on the solids to extract all the good liquid. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the sieve too! Add liquid back into the saucepan (wipe it out first, if needed); discard solids.

Add maple, salt, and butter into the cranberry mixture, heating over medium-low and stirring continuously until butter is fully melted, about five minutes. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg and egg yolks. Temper the eggs by slowly whisking in a bit of the hot cranberries; then continue to whisk in the rest. Add the whole thing back into the saucepan (no need to wipe it out here), and continue to cook over low heat, stirring continuously, until the curd thickens and coats the back of a spoon – about 8-10 minutes more. Whisk in vanilla, then remove from heat and let cool completely (I usually let it cool in a pyrex snapware container, not the saucepan). You can strain it again if need be – I found mine was smooth enough to do without.

The curd can be made ahead – it keeps well for several days in the fridge. No need to bring it room temp before using in the tart.

Pour the curd into the crust and smooth the top. Bake at 375 for 8-12 minutes, until the curd is barely set. Cool completely before slicing and serving – even better, cool it in the fridge for a few hours before slicing. Leftovers keep well, covered, in the fridge at least overnight.

naked tart, with a small divot where I dropped a crumb and tried to get rid of it. oh well, perfection is overrated anyway.

One Reply to “Rainy days and a cranberry tart”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s