24 hours. That was the lifespan of this delicious tart. Baked fresh in the morning, this dessert was already half devoured by early evening. And even before this poor little tart could celebrate the one-day mark of its birth, the remaining bits had mysteriously disappeared. Luckily, I was able to steal one tiny sliver for myself, just so I could attest to the deliciousness of this creation. But, in this case, are words even necessary? I think the lifespan says it all. 24 hours, my friends. Grab a piece while you can!
Is there anything quite like fresh summer fruit? Hardly. In my opinion, there is no comparison to ripe locally-grown summer nectarines; the kind with a satiny smooth interior that is bursting with delectably sweet juice. It is a flavor so incredible that it can only be experienced once a year. And thank goodness that time is finally upon us; it is nectarine season. So now that we have such an honorable ingredient, what shall we do with it? Well, this star-of-a-fruit requires nothing less than an all-star dessert to showcase its wonderful qualities. And this is it: Nectarine Almond Tart.
A custard-like almond filling enhances, rather than overpowers the fresh fruit flavor in this tart, adding the perfect amount of sweetness to highlight the natural nectarine flavor. It is the perfect tribute to fresh nectarines, or even peaches, pears, or plums if you prefer. Is your mouth watering yet?
Nectarine Almond Tart
Adapted from Bon Appétit, March 2003
2 egg yolks
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 Tbsp water
1 cup + 2 Tbsp GF Flour Mix*
2 Tbsp sweet rice flour
2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/4 tsp salt
6 Tbsp cold butter, cut into 6 pieces
1/2 cup packed almond paste
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup GF Flour Mix*
3 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 ripe nectarines, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 10-inch tart pan with cooking spray and generously dust with rice flour.
Whisk together egg yolks, water, and almond extract in a small bowl. Using a stand mixer, combine flours, sugar, xanthan gum, and salt. Add chilled butter and mix until a crumbly, coarse meal forms. Add in egg yolk mixture and continue mixing until dough comes together in a ball.
Gather dough and place between two large pieces of plastic wrap lightly coated in sweet rice flour. Flatten dough into a 1-inch-thick disc and roll out between plastic wrap until big enough to fit a 10-inch tart pan. Remove top piece of plastic wrap and invert dough into prepared pan. Trim and patch crust as necessary, then gently prick bottom of crust 5 to 6 times with fork. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove crust from oven while you prepare the filling.
Process almond paste and sugar in food processor until paste is finely-ground. Add flour and butter, processing until fully incorporated. Add eggs and vanilla extract and process until smooth (filling will be fairly liquid-like). Pour filling over prebaked crust.
Arrange nectarine slices on top of filling (avoid manipulating the slices too much, as they will sink in the filling). Bake tart until filling is puffed and golden brown, about 45-50 minutes. Cool 30 minutes, then remove tart from pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.
*GF Flour Mix
2 cups brown rice flour
2/3 cup potato starch
1/3 cup tapioca starch