This recipe originally called for store bought cranberries (which are fine if that is what you have to work with) but we have over the years replaced them with our local (interior Alaska) wild low bush cranberries which are smaller and tarter; as well as making a few other changes, less sugar, pecans, different shell, etc. People love this tart and we traditionally make it for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Older people think it harks back to the flavor of traditional mince meat and us younger people, well we just just love it ‘cause it tastes so good. We have served it straight up naked, with vanilla ice cream, softly whipped cream and or lightly whipped cream fraiche.
It’s all good. —Ruth
orange zest, organic if possible
large tart apples, peeled, cored and grated
finely chopped pecans
Classic Tart Dough
cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl, wet in a small bowl. Add the wet to the dry, mix well. Brush egg wash over the already prepped and chilled tart dough and pour the well mixed filling into the shell, sprinkle the chopped pecans evenly over the top. Roll out the tart dough scraps and cut out shapes appropriate to the occasion and your mood to place on top of the filling. Brush them lightly with the egg wash before placing them, artistically of course, on the top of the filling and then sprinkle the top of the tart with 1 tbsp of white sugar.
Place in a pre-heated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes and then reduce the temperature to 350 baking for 35 more minutes. It is a good idea to place a sheet pan under this tart before placing it in the oven, depending on the juiciness of your chosen apple and berries it has a tendency to bubble over while baking. Let it cool until you can remove the fluted ring from the pan without burning yourself, if it bubbled over and is sticking to the pan put back into a warm oven for a few minutes and it should pop right out. After removing the ring let the tart continue to cool until set. Then remove the bottom of the pan, placing tart on a serving plate. This tart tastes great after melding for a day or right out of the pan, if chilled bring to room temp before serving.
Classic Tart Dough
Combine the water and salt, keep chilled until needed. Place flour and butter in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times until the butter forms small pebbles or large crumbs, whatever description you prefer. Add the water and salt mixture and pulse until the dough comes together into a ball but is not overworked. Shape ball into disk, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for two or more hours.
Roll out dough and line a lightly buttered 9 inch tart pan. Make sure the dough isn't stretched while also making sure that it fits snugly into the bottom edge. With the extra dough draped over the edge of the tart pan roll your pin over the edge, a tidy separation between shell and scraps occurs. Place lined pan in the refrigerator to chill while prepping the filling. Wrap, set aside and chill dough scraps for later use.