If you're looking for a decadent, simple to make, yet not too sweet of a dessert, or even a little something to accompany your coffee or tea, then look no further.
It's rustic form is charming in it's own right, but once you've tasted the sweet almond and slight orange tang, you realize there's much more to this tart than meets the eye.
Don't be fooled into thinking that a small chunk will be enough. Sure, you'll walk away satisfied but mark my words, it won't be long before you return for just one more bite. Then another.
Italian Almond TartRecipe found on Food and Wine
3/4 cup raw almonds
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
6 tablespoons fine cornmeal (I used regular cornmeal)
1/2 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 350' F
Butter a 9" springform pan
Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes in the oven.
Leave the oven on.
Allow the almonds to cool a bit, then roughly chop. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the egg yolk, orange zest, almond extract and vanilla extract. Set aside
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal and salt. With a pastry blender, or a fork, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles a course meal (which means it's not a fine powder, it's not large lumps, and it hasn't yet come together like a dough). Stir in the sugars and chopped almonds. With your hands (yes, you're going to down and dirty for a minute), gently work in the egg yolk mixture. The resulting dough should be crumbly.
Loosely press the dough into the buttered springform pan. Don't get all 'perfectionist' on me here. Remember, this is a rustic dessert. The surface should be uneven and bumpy.
Bake for 40 minutes or until a golden brown.
Allow to cool completely before unmolding.
Break the tart into chunks.
Go ahead...have a bit of fun with it. Break off chunks in all different shapes and sizes. Forget about even trying to be symmetrical here. It seriously isn't gonna happen. And don't even think about breaking out the knife.
Now that you've been inundated with the aroma, you know you're going to have to give it a try. Why don't you make yourself a hot cup of tea to go with it. Put on an old movie (Breakfast at Tiffany's perhaps) and relax a bit. No matter what kind of day you've had, you deserve it.