Isn’t it nice when you look at a recipe and think – “hey, I’ve got all these ingredients at home, I can make this!” Well this is one of those recipes. It’s from the Food and Wine site and I have edited and added my comments on the process. Everyone is doing these tarts but this recipe just seemed to be right. I like citrus and I especially like it when it is in season. Right now, and for the next couple of months or so – depending on where you shop, you will find an abundance of Blood Oranges. I know, what’s up with that, they’re just red aren’t they? Well, they are more than just red, they taste different, more tart than a regular orange. Personally, from having consumed many of them, I get a caramelized – burnt orange kind of flavor from them, a grown up taste. But to keep it fun for all, I added clementines to mine for a twist on the conventional blood orange tart.

That taste is why they lend themselves nicely to this recipe. The simple tart crust – flour, butter, sugar, baking powder, salt and a little water add a sweet taste that balances the tart of the oranges. As I usually do, I substituted 1 tablespoon of Vodka (I always have a bottle in the freezer – so that worked out well :)) for 1 tablespoon of water. Let it rest in the fridge and while it’s resting, work on the oranges and clementines. Segment 4 blood oranges and 4 clementines if you are using a combination, and slice the remaining 2 blood oranges for the center – this is more for the photo than anything else! When I learn how to video and cut food at the same time, I’ll put videos on line of how to segment an orange, in the meantime, just google “segmenting oranges”. I learned how to do this watching Ruth Fremes on TV (okay, now I’m dating myself) when I was younger and she had her own TV show. A great way to enjoy orange, grapefruit etc. segments in a salad.

The tart crust rolls out beautifully when you take it out of the fridge. If at first you find it too soft, just stick it back in the fridge for a bit longer. I’m using Churn 84, the higher fat content butter so it needed some more time to set, about 1 hour. Flour your surface and the rolling pin. This is a rustic tart, it doesn’t need to be perfect. I folded it over much like when I make a crostata – same idea, same look. But the crust is sweetened with sugar and there is sugar sprinkled on top as well. I had coarse sugar so I sprinkled it on the crust – you know that strudel type of look. Bottom line -substitute anything you want for the oranges. Such a great recipe, make it with whatever you like – persimmons maybe?! As always – enjoy!

1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
¼ cup plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup Churn 84, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
3 tablespoons ice water
8 to 10 blood oranges or 6 blood oranges and 4 clementines
1 large egg yolk mixed with 2 tablespoons of water – for the egg wash

In the bowl of your food processor, add the flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder and salt – pulse a couple of times to mix everything together
Add the butter and pulse several times, just until it is the size of peas
Sprinkle the dough with the vodka and ice water and continue to pulse until moistened crumbs form and it starts to come together – do not over process

Turn the contents out onto a work surface, bring together and knead once or twice
Pat into a disk, wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour
While this is chilling, peel, segment and slice the oranges and/or clementies as discussed above – save the juice for a great Blood Orange vinaigrette (olive oil, the juice, salt, pepper – some seasoned rice vinegar if it needs additional acid – whisk together to create an emulsion – season, taste and re-season)
I suggest placing the segments and slices on a paper towel to absorb extra juices – that way you won’t end up with a soggy bottom crust – no one likes a soggy bottom 🙂

On a floured work surface, roll out the pastry to a circle approximately 12″ wide and about ¼” thick
Using the rolling pin, transfer the pastry to a parchment lined cookie sheet and refrigerate for 15 minutes, or until chilled
Arrange the orange sections on the pastry, leaving a 2-inch border all around
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the sugar over the oranges/clementines – but mostly on the oranges
Fold the pastry over the segments, leaving most of the oranges uncovered

Brush the pastry with the egg wash and sprinkle lightly with 1 tablespoon of the sugar
Arrange the segmented orange slices on top, leaving a 1-inch border of pastry all around – I placed the clementines on the outer border and the oranges on the inside, a nice surprise when you cut and bite into it, as the clementines would be sweeter than the orange
Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of the oranges
Freeze the tart until solid, at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.
Preheat the oven to 375° and position a rack in the center
Bake the tart directly from the freezer for 1 hour – check and if needed, leave in the oven, checking every 5 minutes until it gets to this stage – the crust should be browned and the tart bubbling in the center
Note – if there is a crack in the pastry before it bakes, that beautiful juice will leak out, so take care to ensure the pastry isn’t cracked – patch it if it has any by pinching the dough
Let cool for 5 minutes then transfer to a rack to cool completely
Serve with the Salted Caramel Sauce – recipe below

Salted Caramel Sauce
My friend Chef Maria melts sugar this way for her almond brittle. It works for caramel as well.

1 cup sugar
6 tbsp. Salted Churn 84
¾ cup 35% cream, heated in a microwave for 30 – 45 seconds – it should be warm

Melt the sugar over medium to moderately high heat in a large heavy bottom pot – when you add the cream it will bubble furiously and the larger pot will help you contain the caramel as it bubbles and rises, it also makes it easier to whisk – if you have a non-stick pot, this would be the time to use it – cleanup is significantly easier
Stir constantly, it will be hard at first and seem lumpy, but have faith it will all melt into clear deliciousness – and then very quickly star to darken
Darken the melted sugar to a dark amber/brown color – remove from the heat – I find keeping a wet towel on my counter helpful when I want to immediately stop/slow down the cooking process by placing the hot pot onto the wet towel
Place on the wet towel and add the butter all at once and whisk to incorporate
Add in the heavy cream – this is where the furious bubbling happens so be careful – keep whisking until it is a smooth sauce – it will thicken as it cools
Use it right away or pour it into a jar and store it in the fridge for up to two weeks
If using from the fridge, you may need to microwave for 15 second bursts to get it to pouring consistency – the jar will be hot out of the microwave, so please take care

Play the video at the bottom of the pictures for the final product – the salted caramel being poured over the cut slice of tart (my daughter helped me capture this video for Instagram).

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