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almond crust

Gluten-Free Crusts: Savory & Sweet

TIME: ~30 MINUTES + chilling; SERVES: 1 CRUST
Adapted from NYT Cooking & ‘Dishing up the Dirt’

If you’re looking for a crust that will replace a classic apple or cherry pie dough, these are not them. Ground nuts add a layer of richness, flavor and texture, but they are far from flakey. These are hardier crusts that are pressed into pans with either a sweet curd, like the Cranberry Curd tart from NYT Cooking, or a filling quiche.

ALMOND-THYME CRUST

INGREDIENTS

2 cups almond meal or flour
2 - 3 cloves garlic, minced or grated
1 tbls. minced fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
1/3 cup olive oil
~1 1/2 tbls. water

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease a 10-inch tart pan, cast iron skillet or 9-inch pie pan with oil or butter. In a mixing bowl, stir together the almond meal/flour, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Pour in the olive oil and stir until thoroughly combined. Add the water, a little at a time until the dough holds together.

  2. Press the dough into your prepared pan until it is evenly dispersed across the bottom and at least 1 inch up the sides. Bake until the crust is lightly golden and firm to the touch, about 15 minutes.


HAZELNUT CRUST

You can substitute almonds or pecans for this recipe. I prefer to buy raw nuts and roast them, because many of the roasted & blanched nuts I’ve purchased are rancid.

1 1/4 cup raw hazelnuts
1 cup rice flour (brown or white)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 - 1/2 cup sugar
6 tbls. softened, unsalted butter; more as necessary

METHOD

  1. Heat oven to 325°F.

  2. Spread hazelnuts on a baking sheet and roast for 12 - 15 minutes, until skins darken and crack. If you want a very uniform crust, place roasted nuts in a clean towel and rub off skins. Discard skins and let nuts cool.

  3. In a food processor, grind nuts with half the rice flour until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Add remaining rice flour and salt, and pulse briefly.

  4. Cream sugar and butter in a mixing bowl for a minute or two until pale and thick. Add nut mixture and combine until dough comes together. If it seems crumbly, add 1 - 2 tbls. softened butter or a little cold water.

  5. Press dough evenly into a 10-inch tart pan; use 1/4 of the dough for the sides and 3/4 for the bottom. Prick bottom with a fork and freeze for 30 minutes (or up to several days). Don’t feel obligated to use all the dough if the crust seems very thick—about 1/4-inch is thick enough.

  6. Heat oven to 350°F. Bake the chilled tart shell about 15 minutes until lightly brown before filling.

cran curd tart.jpg

Spring Quiche with Peas & Green Garlic

TIME: 1 HOUR; SERVES: 6 - 8
Crust recipe adapted from ‘Dishing up the Dirt’

I make variations of this quiche every Sunday after market, so I have a grab-n-go lunch or breakfast prepped for the week. This is my all-time favorite “Spring Edition”, since peas and green garlic are so fleeting, yet so delicious together. Pea shoot micro greens in addition to shelling peas are used, which infuses the quiche with a grassy, fresh flavor. There is a bit of prep required, (especially if you like to make your own crème fraîche—recipe in Pantry Staples & Other Goodies). Double the crust and keep sealed in the fridge for the following week.

INGREDIENTS

Crust
2 cups almond meal or flour
2 - 3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbls. fresh thyme, minced, or 1 tsp. dried
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
1/3 cup olive oil
~1 1/2 tbls. water

Quiche 
1 tbls. ghee, butter, or olive oil
2 - 3 green garlic bulbs & tender stalks, minced (~1/3 cup)
2 cups pea shoot micro greens, roughly chopped
1/2 - 1 cup fresh shelling peas, shelled
1/4 cup parsley and/or mint, chopped
A splash dry white wine or chicken/veggie stock
1/2 cup whole milk, half & half, or heavy cream
4 large eggs
A few generous dollops of crème fraîche, sour cream, or ricotta
Sprinkle of Parmesan cheese (opt.)
Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

  2. Grease a 10-inch tart pan, cast iron skillet or 9-inch pie pan with oil or butter.

  3. In a mixing bowl, stir together the almond meal/flour, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Pour in the olive oil and stir until thoroughly combined. Add the water, a little at a time until the dough holds together.

  4. Press the dough into your prepared pan to evenly cover bottom and at least 1 inch up the sides. Bake until the crust is slightly golden and firm to the touch, about 15 minutes.

  5. In a large skillet over medium heat, add the ghee/butter/oil to coat the pan. Cook the green garlic & peas with a dash of salt, stirring often, until fragrant and bright green. If dry, add the white wine or stock. Toss in the pea shoots and herbs of choice, and let wilt while stirring, about 30 seconds. Turn off the heat and transfer the mixture to a plate to cool.

  6. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk/cream, salt and pepper.

  7. Once the crust has finished baking, spread the veggie mixture over top. Pour in the egg mixture, and add the dollops of crème fraîche or sour cream. Sprinkle with Parmesan if using, and bake for 30 minutes, or until the center is firm to the touch and cooked through.

  8. Let the quiche cool for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing with a sharp knife. Serve warm or cold.

pea quiche 1.jpg
pea quiche cooked.jpg