Since telling my work colleagues bit by bit about my impending departure (Friday, yo!), I’ve been overwhelmed by so many good thoughts and wishes and hugs and smiles, and showered with offers for lunch and coffee. It all makes me wonder if I should be leaving jobs more often. I kid, but it goes to show how wonderful all my work peeps are.
And it’s because of this wonderfulness that we have today’s recipe. Last week, Dr. and Mrs. Walnut took me out for a fancy pants, boozy lunch, where I was forced-fed salmon, popovers, chocolate cake and cookies. Life is hard. Then, a few days later, I arrived at my desk only to find a plate full of the most adorable tarts, all for me. Well, I shared some, but the rest, I hoarded. Not only that, Mrs. Walnut was gracious enough to share the recipe for this hand-me-down family favorite. Perfect, since she knows that I like to hoard recipes, too.
We’e already seen one of Mrs. Walnut’s wonders before. Remember those Swedish Cardamom Rolls? So good, and I recommend you remember them again around Easter time because that’s a breakfast the Easter bunny won’t forget anytime soon.
But back to these tarts. These mazariners.
I tend not to be a fan of almond extract because people put it where it doesn’t belong. In pound cakes. Ruining lemon poppyseed scones. In cookies. But, you know where it DOES belong? With almonds! Duh. these mazariner tarts are filled with marzipan and rather than stick out like a sore thumb, the extract served to enhance the natural taste of the almonds. It was delicious and I could not help myself to more than one.
Dr. Walnut told me in very hush-hush tones that he preferred these tarts to be eaten slightly warm, but that the Mrs. disagreed. I’ve had them both ways and can attest that whether you prefer your desserts warm or room temperature, they don’t disappoint.
Random thought: wouldn’t these just be so lovely at, say, a tea party?
- 1 cup butter
- 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 cup almond paste (marzipan)
- 2/3 cup unsalted butter
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
- dash of salt
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 16 marachino cherries, halved
- Make the dough. Cream the butter with the confectioners' sugar. Add the yolk and extract and mix well. Stir in the flour.
- Divide the dough in half and chill for 1/2- 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Divide each half of dough into 16 equal pieces. Press each piece of dough into the bottom and sides of small (3-inch) fluted tart pans. Set aside.
- Make the filling. Mix together the almond paste and butter until well combined. Add the eggs, extract and salt. Mix well.
- Spoon the filling into the lined tart plans. Arrange on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes.
- While the tarts are baking, mix the confectioners' sugar with enough water to make a slightly thick, white icing, about 2-3 TB. Spread on the tarts while still warm.
- When cool, top each tart with 1/2 maraschino cherry.
I’d imagine so.
Written during Lester Holt, before dinner, whilst snuggling with Crawley.