Caramelized Nut Tart
- For the short-crust pastry:
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 Tbs. sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, out of the
refrigerator for 15 minutes, cut into pieces
- About 1 1/2 Tbs. water
- For the filling:
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 cup hazelnuts
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Gather the dough into a ball and flatten into a 6-inch disk. Cover with pplastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Gently press the pastry into the bottom and sides of a 9 1/2-inch tart pan with a removable bottom, forming an even layer on the bottom and building up the sides slightly. Place the shell in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Preheat an oven to 400°F.
Line the pastry with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the weights and foil and reduce the heat to 375°F. Continue to bake until lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Leave the oven set at 375°F.
To make the filling, fill a small saucepan half full of water, add the baking soda and bring to a boil. Add the hazelnuts and boil for 30 seconds. Drain, immediately place in a kitchen towel and rub to remove the skins. Chop the hazelnuts coarsely. Spread the hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts and pecans on a baking sheet and bake until the almonds are lightly golden, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Position a rack in the upper part of the oven and increase the heat to 400°F.
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the cream, sugar and vanilla extract. Bring to a boil and boil until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in all the nuts. Let stand for 15 minutes.
Pour the filling into the prebaked tart shell and place on a baking sheet. Bake until the top is a combination of creamy white and russet-caramel in color and is dotted all over with small holes, 30 to 35 minutes. Transferthe pan to a rack and cool for 15 minutes, then remove the pan sides and slide the tart onto a serving plate. Serve at room temperature.