If you've never baked with almond paste, you've never truly baked. It's chicest ingredient you can add to a baked good. Everytime I use it angels weep and lives are changed. Don't be afraid of it. You'll find it in a tiny box hidden on the baking aisle next to the marzipan. This recipe from Williams-Sonoma is easy to make but has a lot of waiting between steps. Make it on a lazy Sunday and send me a thank you note for making your life better. It's a favorite in my household.
1 egg yolk
2 Tbs. very cold water
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1⁄4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1⁄3 cup sugar
1⁄4 tsp. salt
8 Tbs. (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into
Almond Raspberry Tart
1 rolled-out round of tart dough
8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1⁄2 lb. almond paste, cut into 1-inch cubes
1⁄4 cup sugar
1⁄3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1⁄3 cup raspberry, plum or cherry jam
1⁄3 cup sliced almond
Fold the dough round in half and carefully transfer to a 9 1/2-inch tart pan, preferably with a removable bottom. Unfold and ease the round into the pan, without stretching it, and pat it firmly into the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Trim off any excess dough by gently running a rolling pin across the top of the pan. Press the dough into the sides to extend it slightly above the rim to offset any shrinkage during baking.
Refrigerate or freeze the tart shell until firm, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 375°F.
Line the pastry shell with aluminum foil or parchment paper and fill with pie weights or raw short-grain rice. Bake for 20 minutes, then lift an edge of the foil. If the dough looks wet, continue to bake, checking every 5 minutes, until the dough is pale gold, for a total baking time of 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack.
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and reduce the heat to 350°F.
In a bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed or a whisk, beat the butter until smooth. Add the almond paste, one piece at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. While continuing to beat, sprinkle in the sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the flour.
Spread the jam evenly over the bottom of the partially baked tart shell. Spoon in the almond paste mixture and spread evenly over the jam. Sprinkle the surface evenly with the sliced almonds.
Bake the tart until the filling is golden and the middle is firm to the touch, 35 to 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let the tart cool completely. If using a tart pan with a removable bottom, let the sides fall away, then slide the tart onto a serving plate. Serve at room temperature. Makes one 9 1/2-inch tart; serves 8.
I'm obsessed with all things Pioneer Woman, and when I saw her make this recipe I had to have it. She makes her own pizza dough in bulk and stores the extra in one of her chic ranch homes. I got mine from Trader Joe's. With the premade dough, it's crazy easy to throw together.
Fig-Prosciutto Pizza with Arugula
Premade Pizza dough
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons Fig Spread Or Jam
Kosher Salt To Taste
12 ounces, weight Fresh Mozzarella, Sliced Thin
6 ounces, weight Thinly Sliced Prosciutto
1 bunch Washed And Rinsed Arugula
Freshly Ground Pepper, to taste
1/2 cup Shaved Parmesan
Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
Roll out 1/3 of the pizza dough as thinly as possible. Place on a large baking sheet.
Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with kosher salt. Spread fig spread (or jam) all over the surface of the dough. Sprinkle lightly with salt.
Lay sliced of mozzarella all over the surface. Sprinkle lightly with salt and freshly ground pepper. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until crust is golden and cheese is bubbly.
Remove from oven and immediately lay prosciutto over hot pizza. Just before serving, sprinkle on arugula and Parmesan shavings.
Cut into wedges or squares and serve immediately!