I created this recipe specifically for this contest. I've been thinking about it all week and wanted to create the ultimate late winter tart recipe. I went with a sweet tart instead of savory, and used seasonal kabocha squash, satsuma orange, and asian pear. The coconut, spices and almonds complement the flavors of the tart. I really love the almond-maple caramel and whipped cream that go on top as well.
This is sort of an Asian spin on pumpkin pie. It's bittersweet because this is probably the last comforting dessert of the season before I start making wam weather desserts like ice cream and strawberry shortcake. —Emilyhobbs
unsalted butter, softened
packed brown sugar
finely ground almonds
all purpose flour
cooked pureed Kabocha squash
packed brown sugar
fresh Satsuma orange juice
finely grated Satsuma orange zest
large Asian pear, peeled, cored, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat inside and removable bottom of an 8-inch tart pan with cooking spray.
To make the crust, in a large bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat together 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup brown sugar until creamy – about 1 minute. Beat in 1/2 cup ground almonds and flour until combined, and a crumbly dough forms. Place dough in tart pan and press into bottom and sides. Bake 10-12 minutes or until light golden brown and fragrant.
To make the filling, in a large bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat together squash and brown 1/4 cup sugar until well combined – about 1 minute. Beat in eggs, coconut milk, orange juice, orange zest, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and 1/4 teaspoon salt until well combined – about 2 minutes. Place filling into cooled tart shell; place pear slices on top; sprinkle with coconut. Bake 30-35 minutes or until set, and pear is light golden brown; cool on a wire rack.
To make the Almond-Maple Caramel, in a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk together 1 tablespoon butter, 3 tablespoons brown sugar, maple syrup, cream and 1/8 teaspoon salt; bring to a boil. Boil 3 minutes, whisking frequently, until sugar is dissolved; whisk in 3 tablespoons sliced almonds until combined. Remove outer ring from tart pan. Evenly drizzle Almond-Maple Caramel on top of tart. Serve tart slices with whipped cream.