Raspberry Pistachio Tarts

Raspberry Pistachio Tarts

I very much like Nigel Slater – his laid back attitude to cooking, calm personality and excellent recipes (not sure about the beard he is currently sporting though).  Anyhow, here is one of his summer pud recipes that was recently published in The Guardian.

Raspberry Pistachio Tarts

Ingredients makes 8
butter 100g
caster sugar 2 tbsp
shelled pistachios 75g
egg yolk 1
plain flour 200g

For the filling
orange 1 small
sugar 3 tbsp
shelled pistachios 75g
double cream 500ml
200g raspberries (or indeed any soft fruit – go and pick some free blackberries perhaps?)

How to prepare
Using a food mixer fitted with a flat paddle, cream the butter and sugar until pale and smooth. Set the oven at 200C/gas mark 6.

Grind the pistachios to coarse crumbs, either in a food processor or using a pestle and mortar. They should be slightly coarser than ground almonds.

Beat the egg yolk into the butter and sugar, then the ground pistachios and then, gently, the flour. Bring the dough together to form a ball, then wrap it in clingfilm and place it in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Roll the pastry out thinly on a lightly floured board, then, using a 9cm pastry cutter or upturned tumbler, cut 8 discs from the pastry. Lay them on a baking sheet, a centimetre or two away from each other, then prick them all over with a fork. Bake for 15-20 minutes, watching them carefully, till lightly crisp. Take care not to let them brown.

Very finely grate the zest from the orange and set aside. Remove the pastries from the baking tray with a palette knife or flat slice and transfer to a cooling rack.

To make the praline, lightly oil a non-stick baking sheet. Sprinkle the sugar over the base of a non-stick frying pan and place over a low to moderate heat. When the sugar starts to caramelise, gently twist the pan from the side to side, letting the sugar melt evenly, then add the pistachios. Turn the pan or gently stir so the nuts are evenly coated in caramel. When the caramel is pale golden brown, pour the nuts on to the oiled tray and leave them for 10 minutes to set. BE VERY CAREFUL NOT TO SPLASH ANY OF THE VERY VERY HOT CARAMEL ON YOURSELF (OR THE DOG) LIKE I DID. (Dog is OK).

Whip the cream until it sits in soft mounds then place in the fridge. Remove the nuts from the tray and crush them to a gritty texture, either in a food processor or with a knife or a pestle and mortar. Stir three quarters of the nuts into the whipped cream, folding in carefully so as not to over-mix the cream. Divide the pistachio cream between the eight biscuits then add a few raspberries to each. Finish with the remaining praline and the grated orange zest.

Photograph is by a chap called Jonathan Lovekin.