Apricot Almond TartFrom GRACEHILL - A BED & BREAKFAST
IN THE HEART OF THE SMOKY MOUNTAINS
- ½ of 8 oz can almond paste
- 3T and 1½ t sugar, divided
- 3 oz cream cheese, cut into ½ inch cubes
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1- 15 oz can lite apricot halves (or those in heavy syrup)
- ¼ cup apricot jam, heated in microwave
- 1 Pie crust dough
- 3 crushed amaretti cookies (Italian macaroons) or if you can't find these use a little flake coconut.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Blend almond paste and 3 T sugar in a food processor until finely chopped. Add cream cheese, egg yolk, and vanilla and blend until filling is smooth.
This original recipe calls for 1 refrigerated pie crust (half of a 15 oz package) room temperature. Says to unroll crust on heavy rimmed backing sheet, spread filling over crust leaving a 1 ½ inch plain border which you then fold back up and over the filling. Instead I make my own pie crust dough and use a large tart pan. The edges look a lot crisper and it bakes more evenly.
The crust I use has a ratio of 6 cups of flour, 1 pound of lard, and 2 t of salt. About two cups of this mixture will make a large tart bottom. Use very cold water to form ball and roll out. The rest of the dry ingredients can be refrigerated for future use.
Spread your filling on the rolled out piecrust dough. Drain the apricots and cut into strips. Arrange apricot slices pinwheel fashion on the filling in a spoke pattern in 2 concentric circles. Dribble apricot jam on top and sprinkle with remaining sugar. Bake until crust is golden about 43 minutes. A few minutes before taking out of the oven sprinkle the crushed cookies or flake coconut on top. Cool and serve warm or at room temp.