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Warm Cranberry Crumble Tart

Ingredients:



Filling
  • 5 cups (20 ounces) fresh cranberries
  • ¾ cup (5¼ ounces) sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 1 medium orange
  • 4 teaspoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon


Topping
  • 1 cup (5 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (5¼ ounces) sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • Vanilla ice cream, for serving


Procedures:

When the crisp fall air brings fresh cranberries to market, this tart will celebrate the season. Dressy enough for company, comforting enough for a night in front of the fire, it should be served warm with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream alongside. The sweet crumble topping is a fine partner to the tart cranberries within. If you’d like to add a little more crunch, stir 1/3 cup coarsely chopped nuts into the crumble topping (walnuts and almonds would be especially good).

    Trim and finish the tart dough: Use the scissors to trim the dough so it overhangs the edge of the tart pan by 1 inch. Moisten the inside wall of dough with your finger dipped in cool water. Fold the overhanging dough inward to form a sturdy double-layered edge. Press firmly with your thumbs to fuse the two layers of dough, then roll your thumb over the rim of the tart to remove any excess dough there. Chill while the oven preheats.

    Bake the shell: Preheat the oven to 375°F and position an oven rack in the lower third. Line the chilled tart shell with heavy-duty foil, pressing the foil firmly and smoothly into the crevices of the pan. Fill the pan with pie weights. Make sure the weights reach up the sides to the rim of the pan (the center does not need to be filled quite as full). Bake the shell for 20 to 22 minutes, until the foil comes away from the dough easily (if it doesn't, bake another 5 to 6 minutes and check again). Remove the pan from the oven (hold the pan by the sides and not the bottom), close the oven door, and lift out the foil and weights from the shell; set them aside to cool. Return the pan to the oven to continue baking the shell for about 10 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven, close the oven door, and check to see if any cracks have formed. If you see a crack, very gently smear a tiny bit of reserved dough over the crack to patch it-you need only enough to seal the opening. Return the pan to the oven and bake 10 to 15 minutes longer, until the crust is a nice golden brown all over. Transfer to a rack and cool completely.

    Mix the filling: Coarsely chop half of the cranberries by hand with a chef's knife or with a few pulses in the bowl of the food processor. In the medium bowl, combine the chopped cranberries, whole cranberries, sugar, orange zest, flour, and cinnamon and stir to blend well.

    Use a silicone or rubber spatula to scrape the filling into the cooled tart shell.

    Mix the topping: Place the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of the stand mixer. Add the cold butter and mix on medium-low speed until the mixture begins to form clumps the size of small peas (some will still look a little sandy, which is fine). This step may also be done by hand in the cleaned medium bowl, pinching the butter between your fingers, or cutting it with a pastry blender, until small clumps form.

    Cover the filling evenly with the topping.

    Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake the tart for 40 minutes, until the fruit is soft and bubbling and the topping is golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack, making sure you hold the pan by the sides and not the bottom (remember, it's a two-piece pan and can come apart!). Cool for 20 minutes before serving. Or, cool completely, then reheat just before serving.

    Place the tart pan on top of a large can from your pantry (the 28-ounce tomato cans are good) so that the bottom balances midair as the rim falls to the counter. Use the large metal spatula to transfer the tart to a serving plate or simply leave the bottom of the tart pan under the tart for support. Slice the tart with a thin, sharp knife and serve warm, with vanilla ice cream.

    Storing: The tart keeps for 1 day at room temperature. For longer storage, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Allow 1 hour for the tart to come to room temperature, or reheat in a 350°F oven for 12 to 15 minutes.

    Getting Ahead: The tart shell can be baked up to 2 days in advance, wrapped, and kept at room temperature. For longer storage, double-wrap in plastic and freeze for up to 1 month. The topping can be prepared and stored airtight in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.



Cindy Mushet and Sur La Table, The Art & Soul of Baking (Andrews McMeel)

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