Hello, everyone! I hope all of my U.S. readers had a great holiday weekend, and I hope the rest of you are having a great not-Monday. :) We had a nice time; I got to meet a friend I’ve known online for ten years this Saturday! Linda, Beloved and I cannot wait to get together with y’all again! Also, as you can see from yesterday’s post, we got to spend most of our weekend with (a very energetic) The G Man. Jolly told us he’d spend all day outside if he could, so…we spent a lot of time outside. Many photos are forthcoming.
We also did a great deal of cooking – we smoked a pork shoulder, a chicken and four racks of ribs and grilled enough brats on Monday to feed a small, third world country (or our family). (Can we say “leftovers”?) And since it’s not a summertime cookout without some sort of a dessert, I made this. The tart is neither low in calories or carbohydrates, but it contains fewer of both and is far more nutritious than a conventional apple pie – and it was absolutely delicious. Jolly, who adores apple pie but is one of my “picky eaters,” ate two large slices – and she normally won’t eat nuts.
The crust is made from almond flour, coconut oil (you can use butter if you eat dairy) and coconut sugar; the filling is apples, spices, coconut sugar and arrowroot powder. Coconut sugar is made from the sweet sap of coconut trees, processed at low temperatures just long enough for it to crystallize. It has nearly half the calories and carbohydrates of regular granulated sugar, is only 1.5% fructose (as opposed to 50% in regular sugar) and is an abundant source of minerals, amino acids, vitamin C, and broad-spectrum B vitamins. It also does not taste like coconut – the flavor is very reminiscent of brown sugar.
While this dish doesn’t fall into the “quick and easy preparation” category, it certainly isn’t any more time consuming or difficult than making an apple pie entirely entirely from scratch – and made with coconut oil, is completely gluten-free, egg-free and dairy-free.
Note: If you want to make this tart using “conventional” methods, make a standard graham-cracker crust and replace the coconut sugar with about 3/4 the same amount of brown sugar. If you must.
Rustic Apple Tart
3 cups almond flour
1/2 cup butter or coconut oil
1/2 cup coconut sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
5 medium Granny Smith apple, halved, cored and cut into 1/4″ slices
1 1/2 cups coconut sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
Preheat oven to 375 F. Lightly grease an 11″ x 1 1/8″ fluted tart pan with removable bottom with butter or coconut oil. Set aside.
Place the apple slices in a large glass mixing bowl; toss with the coconut sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg until all of the slices are coasted and the sugar is beginning to dissolve. Let the apple slices macerate in the sugar for at least half an hour, but no longer than an hour. Stir occasionally.
While the apples are macerating, place the butter/coconut oil in a small microwave-safe bowl; heat on 1/2 power until melted (take care removing the bowl from the microwave – it will be hot). In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the almond flour, coconut sugar and salt; add the butter/coconut oil gradually, stirring with a fork until it has been completely incorporated and the mixture is damp and has a crumbly texture. Evenly press the crust mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the greased tart pan. Set aside.
Transfer the apples and their juices to a colander suspended over another bowl for about 15 minutes, capturing the juice. You should have between 1/2 and 3/4 cup of liquid. Return the apples to the original bowl and toss with the arrowroot. Once the apple slices are coated arrange them, overlapping slightly, in the tart pan in spiral pattern, beginning at the outer edges and working toward the center, until are the apples are used.
In a small saucepan over over medium-high heat, boil the liquid from the apples until syrupy and reduced by about half; swirl the liquid but do not stir it. Pour evenly over the apples arranged in the crust.
Bake at 375 for about 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350 and bake for another 20 to 25 minutes, until the crust is browned and firm, and the apple slices are easily pierced with a fork.
Cool on a rack until room temperature, then refrigerate until cold before removing the fluted sides of the pan and serving. Cover any leftovers with plastic wrap and keep refrigerated.
Posted in participation with Kelly the Kitchen Kops’ Real Food Wednesday