I’m sorry that this post is coming so late in rhubarb season. I spent a long time testing different versions of this tart before posting it. In fact, I have made four versions in the same number of weeks. Some versions were ugly, but they were all fabulously good eating. Rhubarb and Raspberry are match made in heaven. In truth, I may have purposely drawn the recipe testing process out a bit, so that I would have an excuse to eat more Raspberry Rhubarb Tarts. I am a little sad that the process is over.
I wanted to make a gluten-free version of rustic raspberry and rhubarb tart that I found in the New England cookbook by Brook Dojny. This is the sort of tart that you make on a baking sheet. The edges of the dough are just folded up and around the filling in a free form way. This recipe used a raw fruit filling suggested putting a layer of thinly sliced almonds between the crust and the filling. I used the gluten-free pie crust from Annalise Roberts’ excellent cookbook Gluten-free Baking Classics. It was good, so good that no pictures were taken before we ate it all up. I decided to make another Raspberry Rhubarb Tart.
I was attracted to the jammy filling of a Rhubarb and Raspberry Crostada on Lottie and Doof (if you eat gluten try that one for me). The first time I tried to make a tart with this filling, I was cooking it at a friend’s house (the beautiful Sarah Alden who is laughing in the photo on the right).
I was nervous about using the gluten-free dough to wrap the jam filling in a free form way, so I made it in a little white tart dish. Really though, this filling wants to be spread out in a larger tart dish, so that the jam can caramelize a bit. Also, I was chatting with other guests while I cooked, and I overcooked the filling so that there were no pieces of rhubarb (don’t do that). Finally, I personally felt that the filling needed more sugar. It was good, but I felt that I had no choice but to make another Raspberry Rhubarb Tart. Poor me.
For the third version, I wanted to try a free form rustic tart with the more jam like filling. I added a bit more sugar to the pie crust and I also increased the sugar in the filling. This time, I did not over cook the filling and it was a perfectly sweet and tart raspberry jam with lovely pieces of stewed rhubarb floating in it.
I rolled the dough out, sprinkled the center of it with sliced almonds,and poured the fruit mixture on top. Then, I frantically tried to fold and pleat the edges of the dough over the edges of the rapidly spreading filling. Gluten free dough lacks…well gluten…which is a lovely stretchy substance to have in your dough if you are going to fold up to contain a liquid filling. The result was so amazingly ugly that I could not bring myself to photograph it, but it was also one of the tastiest things I have ever made. The buttery crust, the thin layers of almonds and then the caramelized jam filling all reminded me of something my Grandpa Orr (pie baking legend) would have whipped up. If you are planning on make this tart and no one is going to see it but you, this is the way to go.
Here, I have tried to retain all of the excellent qualities of the ugly but delicious version #3, while also making something that a person could serve to guests…or post pictures of without feeling embarrassed. It is important to have a large and shallow baking tin. You know how the most delicious bit of a homemade pie is the bit of pie juice that leaks out of the crust or the vents and overcooks a bit? You want all of your filling to spread out so that all of it can have that “escaped pie filing” allure. Also, the proportion of buttery crust to almond to sweet and tangy fruit filling is important. None of this will happen if you use a regular deep pie dish. I used an 11 inch tart tin, but a 9 x 11 baking dish might work well too. I think this tart would be great cut into squares.
We took this tart to Prospect Park for a picnic with our friends Julie and Migel. Julie was my downstairs neighbor many years ago, when I was first learning how to make puppets. She is a lawyer by profession, but she also has a fantastic artistic eye. When I was frustrated in my attempts to sculpt puppet heads, I would take them downstairs and ask Julie what she thought I should do to fix it. She always had terrific observations and advice, and she still does! When we were walking home from our picnic, Julie suggested that we stop and take a picture of the tart on a tree stump in a particularly beautiful beam of light.
Since we had stopped, we all ate another piece. Julie also instructed me to take a picture of Chris eating the tart with a short depth of field. If only Julie were still living downstairs from me like in the old puppet making days! The photos on my blog would look a lot better if she was on hand for art direction! I mean really… this looks so idyllic! Don’t let this photo fool you. We were in a crowded public park on a hot day in Brooklyn, where some truly hilarious (and not at all idyllic) human behavior was on display. Just focus on the tart people.
So! Here is the recipe, at long last. If you want to make a version that is not gluten-free I would recommend using a half batch of the old-fashioned pie crust recipe here.
RASPBERRY RHUBARB AND ALMOND TART (gluten-free)
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 4 cups 1/2″-thick slices rhubarb (about 1-1 1/4 lb.)
- 6 oz fresh raspberries
- 1 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup blanched sliced almonds
- Dissolve cornstarch in 2 Tablespoons of water in a small bowl and set aside.
- Combine rhubarb, raspberries, and sugar in a large heavy saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until sugar dissolves and juices are released (4 minutes).
- Stir in cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil, then remove it from the heat. The rhubarb will not be cooked and that is okay!
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl and allow it to cool for 30 minutes before proceeding. You can make the pie crust while it cools.
GLUTEN FREE PIE CRUST
adapted from Gluten-Free Baking Classics by Annalise Roberts.
Gluten Free Pie Mix
- 2 cups brown rice flour
- 2/3 cups potato starch (NOT POTATO FLOUR)
- 1/3 cup tapioca flour
This will make enough for two of these crusts (or one of these crusts and a quiche crust, or almost any other single crust pie or tart on this blog). Just keep the extra for next time!
Gluten free Pie Crust
- 1 cups plus 2 Tablespoons gluten-free pie mix
- 2 Tablespoons sweet rice flour (also known as mochi or glutinous rice flour)
- 2 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 6 Tablespoons cold butter
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons lemon or orange juice
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Butter an 11 inch tart tin and dust it with rice flour.
- Mix the dry ingredients together.
- Cut the butter in to the dry ingredients and use your fingers to combine until it has the consistency of course cornmeal.
- In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and lemon juice together.
- Add the egg and lemon mixture to the flour and butter, and combine into a ball.
- Measure out two 12 inch sheets of wax paper. Roll the dough out between two sheets of wax paper.
- Remove one of the sheets of wax paper and flip the dough into the tart tin.
- Remove the second sheet of wax paper and press the dough in to the tart tin using your fingers to repair any cracks.
- Sprinkle the almonds over the crust, then pour the cooled raspberry rhubarb filling on top of the almonds and smooth it out.
- Bake the tart for 45 minutes at 400 degrees. Let it cool before you slice it!