Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Pine Nut Tart

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Did you know that most of the commercial pine nuts are produced in Korea, China, Pakistan and the Himalayan region? I used to think Canada and the US were major producers, with so many pine trees there. Then I went to Shanghai and found pine nuts were so much cheaper there because China is a major producer. The Chinese eat pine nuts as a snack/tidbits as they do other nuts and seeds and so most pine nuts in China are sold with their shells on.

The best way to use pine nuts, to me, is in pesto sauces. I'm not much of a tart-lover, and I have never tried pine nuts in a sweet recipe but this tart turned out good, although I kept thinking of the calories I'm consuming. There's butter, loads of pine nuts (which means oil) and as if that's not enough, I ate it with fresh cream.

I have combined ingredients from different pine nut tart recipes, taking away some butter here and some sugar there, adding honey but taking away lemon juice that would otherwise compete the flavor of the nuts but keeping some lemon zest, just to perk up the tart. To be honest, I still prefer pine nuts in pesto sauce, and I am going to make Korean pine nuts congee next...

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Pine Nut Tart

Tart Pastry
2 cups all-purpose flour
8 T semi-hard butter
2 T icing sugar
1 egg, beaten

- Put flour into a large bowl and add the sugar. Rub in the butter until mixture is crumbly. Add the egg and mix with a fork quickly, then knead a couple of times till it all comes together. Do not overknead.
- Pat the pastry onto a greased, 9"/23 cm loose-bottom tart pan, all the way up to the sides. Put into fridge to chill while you heat up the oven to 160 C.
- Take pastry pan out and put a couple of stainless steel spoons/forks on it and pop it into the oven to bake blind, for 10 minutes. Take out, set aside.

Tart Filling
7 T semi-soft unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey, heated slightly so it's runny
1/4 cup fine sugar
3 eggs
zest of 1 lemon
1 1/4 cup pine nuts
pinch of salt
3 T fruit jam

1. Cream the butter with the sugar until fluffy and light. Beat in the eggs one by one, add in the zest and honey and lastly the pine nuts.
2. Spread a layer of jam on the bottom of the pastry shell and pour the pine nuts mixture into the pastry shell and bake 40 to 45 minutes until the middle of the tart is firm. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped dairy cream.

8 comments:

lily said...

oh, u r hard working! everyday did nice food !

Mandy said...

I like the first photo! Nicely done. At first glance, I thought it's vanilla ice cream, so it's fresh cream?!

Precious Pea said...

Sinful...so sinful. I loves pine nuts but i didn't know it's fattening! I tot it's a healthier alternative than snacking twisties, chips and chocs!

Anonymous said...

hi terry! where do u usually get pine nuts? i love making pesto sauces, and modifying it slightly to avoid repetition, but other than consfood, where i found them selling a 1kg pack of pine nuts, i can almost never find them!

CK-II said...

OMG! I'm salivating!!!

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

lily: :)

mandy: coming frm a photo sifu, i'm very tickled! yes, i figured at least there's no sugar in fresh cream...

precious pea: all nuts have oil. i know good oil, but oil is still oil..1 g carbs/sugar gives 4 calories but 1 g oil/fat gives 9 cal! oh, those snacks u mentioned are def worst than eating nuts!!but eating steamboat is quite healthy, n ur steamboat rest. are getting better n better.

anon: oh i didn't know they had it in consfood. once in a while they sell it at Merdeka or tong hing but not recently. i get mine frm Oz but also China where it's the cheapest!

Greg Wee said...

NEE: Looks gorgeous..ever think of opening a restaurant/bakery.

Anonymous said...

my most recent bath of pine nuts was from merdeka but they're out of it. And unfortunately I dont hv the luxury of getting mine fr oz or china ;)

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