Just a quick post today, as it’s been a busy week.
Gluten-free baking can be a little tricky, especially when converting standard flour recipes. In converting the recipe for the sweet tart dough for the Orange-Almond Tart, I chose to use an all purpose mix made of white rice flour, potato starch and tapioca flour. It’s one that they sell at my local food co-operative and I’ve had really good results with it. In this recipe, though, the dough was ultimately too crumbly, with a slightly sandy taste that detracted a little from the shortbread flavour the dough is meant to have. Next time I try this, I’ll use a different combination of flours – one that doesn’t rely so heavily on white rice flour. (For the record, I’ve made this sweet tart dough recipe as written, with conventional flour, and it turned out beautifully. The problem was my choice of flours, not a fault in the recipe. I think I should have used a touch more xantham gum, too.)
My intention was to make a tangerine version of this tart, but sectioning the tangerines did not go well. The fruit was quite soft and my knife was not quite sharp enough. In the end, I sectioned some nice, firm oranges instead, which worked out quite well.
The almond cream turned out beautifully and the same gluten-free flour mix that failed in the pastry worked really well for the filling.
The finished product was tasty, if crumbly and with a few inexplicably over-browned oranges. The oranges also were a little swallowed by the almond cream, I think because my pan was smaller than called for. I’ll make this again, once I’ve sorted out a gluten-free version of the tart dough that works well. I hope that the next time I make this, too, that the finished product looks a little prettier. Check out the other French Friday participants if you want to see more attractive versions!
UPDATE – February 18/11 – I sent a big slice home with my parents, the day after I made it. I apologized in advance because I didn’t think they’d like my version of the crust much. Turns out, though, that they loved it. My mother phoned back to tell me so. I tried another piece and was really pleased. Refrigerated overnight, the crust had improved immensely. It was no longer crumbly and was very flavourful. The filling was still just as good as it had been the first day. When I make this again, I’ll make it ahead.
You can find many other blogged descriptions of this week’s FFWD recipe here: Orange-Almond Tart