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Author Notes: My mum always makes a treacle tart on Christmas Eve. This was an attempt to do something with a similar crunch and squidge, but with almost Ukrainian or Turkish flavours. —Thom Eagle
Makes 1 tart.
- 250 grams plain flour
- 50 grams soft brown sugar
- 125 grams cold, cubed butter
- 1 egg
- pinch salt
- 1 tablespoon vodka
- Put the flour, sugar and butter in a food processor and whizz to fine crumbs. (Or cut or rub by hand).
- Add the egg, salt and vodka and mix briefly. Squish together into a ball, then stick in the freezer while you make the filling.
- 120 grams caster sugar
- 90 grams softened butter + 1 knob
- 1 egg + 1 yolk
- 170 grams walnuts
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 100 grams dried sour cherries
- 1 teaspoon caraway seed
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Heat the oven to 200C.
- Cream the butter and 90g the sugar together until really fluffy and almost white. An electric mixer is best for this.
- Add the egg and then the yolk, beating really well after each addition. Finely blitz 90g of the walnuts with the flour and then fold this in.
- Roll out your pastry to fit a buttered tart tin, press it in and trim. Spread the walnut filling inside, then sprinkle the cherries evenly over the top.
- Bake for about 1 hour, until the filling is set and the edges of the pastry nice and brown.
- Meanwhile, make the topping. Put the remaining walnuts and sugar with a splash of water and the spices in a small pan over a low heat and cook, swirling occasionally, until the sugar melts.
- Raise the heat and cook the mix to a brown caramel, then toss in the butter. Tip the lot onto a sheet of baking paper to cool, then smash up.
- When the tart is ready, scatter the topping over it. Serve still warm with fresh, thick cream.