Thursday, July 19, 2012

Gluten-Free Blueberry Lemon Cornmeal Tart

Sometimes I just really want to make a specific dessert. Last week, I saw a recipe online for a fig tart with lemon mascarpone cream and rosemary cornmeal crust, and knew I had to make it for my dad - it sounded like the kind of thing he would love. We went to the grocery store, but they had no good figs - neither did the other ones nearby! It's summer, why does nobody have figs??
We had already bought everything else for the tart, so we decided to just try a different fruit. My dad decided on blueberries, which, unlike the figs, were firm and perfectly sweet.
This tart is so delicious. It mixes so many flavors, but is not overwhelming. A cornmeal crust that resembles a cookie is flavored with rosemary and topped with an extremely simple cream. This is the first pastry cream I've made that doesn't need to be cooked - the tart flavors of lemon and mascarpone are so great together. Finally comes a layer of blueberries topped with a honey-jam glaze.
This is the perfect summery dessert for a nice dinner, and so simple to make. It can easily not be gluten-free if you don't have an allergy - just leave out the xanthan gum and substitute regular all-purpose flour for the gluten-free flour.

 Gluten-Free Blueberry Lemon Cornmeal Tart
(adapted from Epicurious)

Gluten-Free Cornmeal Rosemary Crust
1 1/2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal (not stone-ground)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
4 to 5 tablespoons ice water

Lemon Mascarpone Cream
1/3 cup plain greek yogurt
1 cup mascarpone cheese (8 oz)
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons raspberry jelly
1 tablespoon honey
1 pint fresh blueberries

To make crust:
Pulse together flour, cornmeal, sugar, xanthan gum, and salt in a food processor. Add butter and rosemary and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some small (roughly pea-size) butter lumps. Drizzle evenly with 4 tablespoons ice water and pulse until just incorporated.
Gently squeeze a small handful: If it doesn't hold together, add more water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition and continuing to test. Press dough evenly onto bottom and up sides of a 9 or 10-inch fluted tart pan (round or square). Smooth dough with fingers and trim dough edges so they are flush with the pan rim. Chill crust until firm, about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Bake crust in middle of oven until center and edges are golden, 25 to 30 minutes (don't worry if bottom of crust cracks), then cool in pan on a rack.

To prepare filling and assemble tart:
Whisk together greek yogurt, mascarpone, sugar, zest, and salt in a bowl.
Heat jelly and honey in the microwave for 1 minute, or until the jelly is melted, then cool glaze slightly.
Remove side of tart pan and spread mascarpone cream in shell. Arrange fresh blueberries decoratively over cream. Brush blueberries with honey glaze.

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