With another Halloween in the books, the start of November officially marks the start of baking season. I bake year round, but if we’re going to say there is a peak, here it is.
There is no excuse not to switch on the oven and be baking right now!
After such a big meal, sometimes I want a smaller, more elegant slice with less crust.
For that reason, tarts are my go-to. I love their neatly ruffled edges and infinite filling possibilities from fruit to custards to nuts.
When I made the dough for this caramel nut tart, I added ground cinnamon to the dry ingredients, too.
As if I needed a reason to use cinnamon in a fall recipe. I would do anything to have the lingering scent of cinnamon on my hands!
How To Make A Caramel Nut Tart
After blind baking the shell, I started cooking the caramel on the stovetop.
Making caramel can be quite a gamble. If you don’t let it cook long enough the sugar won’t melt all the way and if you let it go too long it burns.
My advice is to watch it carefully, but be patient waiting for that deep golden color and unmistakable aroma.
Once the caramel is finished, you can breathe easy. The rest of the filling is basically a bag of nuts.
I even threw in some pumpkin seeds. A caramel nut tart can be a great way to clear out your pantry.
The bites of this tart were crunchy and salty from the nuts, but then the caramel was wonderfully gooey and sweet especially underneath that first visible layer of nuts on the surface.Print
Caramel Nut Tart
- Prep Time: 45 minutes
- Cook Time: 50-55 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 35-40 minutes
- Yield: 1 9-inch tart
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus more for work surface
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 pound assorted salted nuts (almonds, peanuts, cashews, pecans, pistachios, walnuts, pumpkin seeds)
For the crust, pulse the flour, cinnamon, salt and sugar in a food processor until combined. Add the butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Add the yolk and vanilla extract and mix until the dough forms.
Pat the dough into a 1-inch-thick disk, cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it warm slightly. On a lightly floured work surface roll out the dough an 1/8-inch thick and large enough to fit a 9-inch diameter tart pan with a removable bottom.
Carefully transfer the dough to the pan and trim the excess. (Extra dough can be stored in the refrigerator up to 3 days or frozen up to 1 month.)
Prick the bottom and sides of the crust with a fork. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Line the crust with aluminum foil and fill with dried beans, rice or pie weights. Bake for 25 minutes until the tart starts to turn light brown. Remove the foil and weights and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
To make the caramel, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar and water into a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring frequently until the sugar has dissolved. Increase the heat and bring the caramel to a boil without stirring. Brush down the sides of the saucepan with a wet pastry brush as necessary.
When the caramel is a deep amber color, remove it from the heat and whisk in the heavy cream, honey and vanilla extract. Stir in the nuts.
Pour the filling into the crust and bake for 15-20 minutes until the filling bubbles. Cool on a wire rack before serving. Serve slightly warm.