Monday, November 25, 2013

Italian Almond Tart : Bake-Along #55

Bake-Along #55, Italian Almond Tart, is selected by Zoe of Bake For Happy Kids, and I'm so glad that this tart is selected. It is really good.

Almonds and walnuts are two of my most favourite nuts when it comes to baking, and I love most bakes that uses ground almonds. This recipe calls for almond paste, an ingredient that I really like, which makes the bake, moist with nutty almond flavour. I have made my own almond paste, which is really very easy and takes only 5 minutes. To make the almond paste, please refer to my post here.

This tart starts with the pastry which is to be blind bake, partially cooked, before it is spread with the jam and filling for the final baking.

Homemade Almond Paste, which I've used all 264gm. And Homemade Mulberry Jam. Spread an even layer of any of your favourite jam over the base of the partially baked pastry.

The filling is a mixture of the Almond Paste, eggs, butter, flour and sugar. Once the filling is made, spread it out onto the partially baked pastry, over the jam, and sprinkle the flaked almonds over the top. Bake until filling is golden brown and the middle is firm, about 40 minutes. I tent the top with foil at 30 minutes into baking, as the top is browning too fast and the middle is not fully cooked yet. 

This is one yummy almond tart. The filling is moist, very tasty, nutty and very fragrant from the almond paste, slightly sweet and goes well with my homemade Mulberry Jam which is a little tart. The sweetness from the filling and the slight tangy jam blends perfectly together. And the crust pastry is buttery and crispy tender, though if I were to use this for other tart making, I would probably reduce the sugar slightly.

Overall review : Very good! These tarts are suitable for freezing. I freeze the leftovers wrapped in individual cling wrap. Remove cling wrap, thaw,  wrap in aluminium foil and reheat in the oven for about 10 minutes. 

Italian Almond Tart
(adapted from "The Williams-Sonoma Baking Book")
Makes one 9-1/2-inch tart, or 8 servings
Basic Tart Dough (refer below)
1/2 cup (4oz/125gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 lb (250gm) almond paste, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/4 cup (2oz/60gm) sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup (2oz/60gm) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (3-1/2oz/105gm) raspberry, plum, or cherry jam
1/3 cup (1-1/2oz/45gm) sliced (flaked) almonds

Roll out the dough disk into a 12-inch (30cm) round. Transfer the dough round to a 9-1/2-inch (24cm) tart pan, preferably with a removable bottom. Trim off any excess dough by gently running a rolling pin across the top of the pan. Press the dough into the sides of the pan so that it extends slightly above the rim. Refrigerate or freeze the tart shell until firm, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, place an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 375F (190C). Partially blind bake the tart shell as directed below. Transfer the tart shell to a wire rack. Place an oven rack in the middle of the oven, and reduce the oven temperature to 350F (180C).

In a bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed or a whisk, beat the butter until smooth. Add the almond paste, one piece at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. While continuing to beat, sprinkle in the sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the flour.

Spread the jam evenly in the bottom of the partially baked tart shell. Spoon in the almond paste mixture and spread evenly over the jam. Sprinkle the surface evenly with the sliced almonds.

Bake until the filling is golden and the middle is firm, 35-40 minutes. Transfer the tart to a wire rack and let cool completely. If using a tart pan with a removable bottom, let the sides fall away, then slide the tart onto a serving plate. Serve at room temperature.

Basic Tart Dough
1 large egg yolk
2 tbsp ice water, plus more if needed
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups (6-1/2oz/200gm) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (3oz/90gm) sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup (4oz/125gm) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch (6-mm) cubes

Using the food processor :
In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolk, the 2 tbsp water, and vanilla. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, and salt and pulse to blend. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with butter pieces no larger than small peas. Add the egg mixture and pulse just until the dough pulls together. If the dough is dry, mix in more water 1 tbsp at a time.
Roll out the dough as directions in the recipe above.

For Blind Baking :
Place an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 375F (190C). Remove the pastry shell from the refrigerator or freezer. Line with a sheet of aluminium foil or parchment (baking) paper large enough to overhang the sides, patting the foil into the bottom and up the sides. Cover the bottom of the shell with a generous layer of pie weights or raw-short grain rice on top of the foil. The weights help prevent the pastry from shrinking during baking.
For a partially baked pie or tart shell, bake for 20 minutes, then lift an edge of the foil to check the dough. If it looks wet, continue to bake, checking it every 5 minutes, until it is pale gold. The total baking time will be 25-30 minutes.

Almond Paste
For my own record :
To make about 250gm of almond paste :
150gm ground almond
90gm sifted powdered sugar
1 to 1-1/2 tablespoon egg white (adding a little at a time as needed to form a dough)
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/8 tsp salt
Mix everything together and knead to a dough. Use as directed or can be frozen.

To join our blog hop, bake this Italian Almond Tart and link your post to our Bake-Along linky.
Please visit my baking buddies, Lena from Frozen Wings and Zoe from Bake For Happy Kids, and all our friends who has baked along with us in the linky below :

For our next Bake-Along, we will be baking based on a theme. Since Christmas is just round the corner, our theme for Christmas is "Theme : Christmas Log". Bake any Christmas Log and link your post to the our blog-hop linky which will start on 23rd December right up to 31st December. Everyone is welcome! 


A friendly reminder when linking to our blog hop :
1. Please mention Bake-Along event in your own post linking direct to any of the hosts' post (JoyceLena or Zoe)
2. Please link only new and current post, related to the current bake or theme provided by us. Unrelated post will be deleted.
3. Feel free to display our Bake-Along badge in your post.

To join our blog hop, click on the link to get the codes :
get the InLinkz code


  1. Hi, Joyce, your almond tart must be full of almond aroma...I have the same weighing scale like what you have but mine not functioning anymore...

  2. Nuts topping tart looks delicious.

  3. Joyce, your tart looks so yummy! Its great that it can be frozen'and can be savoured at any time.

  4. Hi Joyce, this almond tart is amazing!

  5. hi joyce, i was thinking that you might come back later to post. Yeah, i like this tart too and i really like the addition of that layer of jam. I just saw your homemade mulberry jam..that must be so yummy too!

  6. Hi joyce
    I bet this must be very delicious with all that almond ingredients in it. I hope I can join to bake along too.

  7. Hi Joyce , I will have to make this tart after the holidays , thanks for sharing :)

  8. Awesome looking tart. Looks so inviting as well.

  9. Joyce esta tarta te ha quedado perfecta se ve muy deliciosa ,abrazos.

  10. Hi Joyce,

    My biggest regret is that I didn't bake mine with homemade jam... Yours must be beyond perfect.... 6/5??? LOL!


  11. Joyce, this tart is extra yummy because it used your homemade jam too! Pls let me try a slice!

  12. Wow Joyce, your Italian almond tart looks fabulous especially with your homemade mulberry jam…I love everything that has almond paste.
    Have a great week :D

  13. My mouth is watering, Joyce. The tart looks divine!

  14. I simply love almond tart. Thanks for sharing the almond paste recipe, I was wondering where I was going to find almond paste!

  15. I should start making tarts now that the weather here is getting colder :D I've been to Lena's and yours look just as wonderful !

  16. can we replace whole wheat flour instead of all purpose flour?