Raspberry and Whipped Hazelnut Tart

Has anyone been watching the Great British Baking Show or the Great British Bake Off if you’re from the UK? I know we’re sort of behind on the times, but Netflix just released their first season of it last year (which was actually season/series 4?) and now they’ve added 2 & 3 (or 5 &6).  C and I did some binge watching and after finishing what Netflix had, sort of freaked out that there were three seasons prior to what we’d seen and had to get them to watch. Well…. to wrap things up, if you haven’t seen it, watch it now. And their opening cake was somewhat of an inspiration for the flavors of this tart.

A couple weeks ago I made hazelnut butter. And while it was really delicious on it’s own on toast, etc. I thought, what if it was a pie or fake-ish cheesecake? And Ta-Da! Idea born.

While the filling was a no-brainer for me with the tofu – since the same style works so well with peanut butter dip, I had a more difficult time trying to decide whether to do a fully “raw” tart (which you could totally do with this crust) or something more like a short crust pastry tart. I opted to go with the short crust pastry type and used inspiration from Sally’s Baking Addiction to make a pretty standard nutty pastry crust.

Raspberry and Whipped Hazelnut Tart

Serves 12-16

Ingredients

Toasted Hazelnut Crust

  • 3/4 c raw hazelnuts
  • 1 c all-purpose flour (or flour of choice)
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c butter, cold and cubed
  • 3 T ice water

Whipped Hazelnut Filling

  • 1 ½ c creamy hazelnut butter
  • 14 oz firm tofu (1 package)
  • 3 T sugar or to taste
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch salt
  • 3-4 T vanilla soy milk (or other milk of choice)

Raspberry Sauce

  • 1 c organic raspberry jam
  • 2 T water
  • 1 c fresh raspberries

Directions

  1. If making your own hazelnut butter, I suggest you do that first before moving on to the rest of the recipe. Store bought is also fine, but difficult to find, and homemade is just that much better!
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread hazelnuts out onto a foil or parchment lined baking sheet. Toast until slightly darkened, about 7 minutes. Watch these like a hawk! Allow to cool down for 5 minutes. Leave oven on to bake the crust.
  3. To remove the skins of the hazelnuts (they’re kind of bitter), lay a clean tea towel on your counter, and scoop the hot hazelnuts, into a pile in the center of the towel (take care due to the high heat of the nuts). Bring the four corners of the tea towel together and gather it up in one hand, so that all of your hazelnuts are scooped up in the bottom of the tea towel. Using your other hand, squish the bottom and the sides of the tea towel so that all the hazelnuts are rubbing up against each other. Do this for a couple minutes until most of the skins are removed.
  4. Separate out the skins from the nuts. I use a slotted serving spoon – it’s big enough to get more than a few nuts at a time and the holes are small enough that the nuts won’t fall through but the skins will.
  5. For the crust:Using a food processor, pulse the toasted hazelnuts, the flour, sugar, and salt together until it reaches the consistency of coarse meal. Add the cubes of cold butter and pulse until the mixture turns into pea-sized crumbs. I used frozen butter since I was working in a warm kitchen – you don’t want it to get too soft.
  6. Transfer mixture to a large bowl. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, slowly stir in 3 Tablespoons of ice water. You only want to add enough water to bring the dough somewhat together. Using floured fingers or the bottom of a flat and lightly floured measuring cup, press the dough evenly into a 9 inch tart or pie pan. (If you’re making smaller tarts, depending on the number of pans you have… I had three smaller spring form pans, reduce the recipe by one quarter.) You want it extremely tight in the pan. You’ll need to use baking beans or pie weights for the next step, so line the crust with aluminum foil or parchment paper and add pie weights or dry baking beans.
  7. Bake at 350F (with pie weights) for 18-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack so it can slightly cool as you prepare the filling.
  8. For the filling: In a clean food processor, blend together the hazelnut butter, tofu (drained), sugar, vanilla, salt, and soy milk until it comes to a super creamy and fluffy consistency.
  9. Spoon filling into tart crust, creating a slight ridge around the outside that can hold in the filling, and place in refrigerator while preparing the topping.
  10. For the sauce: Mix the raspberry jam/preserves with 1-2 T water. Using a wire mesh sieve, press the mixture into the mesh to collect the seedless topping below. (You can also choose to make your our raspberry jam, I just find it to be a little bit of a time saver to by your own and tweak it.)
  11. Spread the raspberry sauce over the top of the tart, staying within the “dam”. Place in tart in refrigerator to chill and set – 4 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, line the edge of the tart with raspberries (bottoms up).

This might be my heaven. Luckily a few bites are already pretty filling, so it’s easily shared. 🙂

After making this amazing tart, I find out C doesn’t like hazelnuts. WHAT!? What crazy person doesn’t like hazelnuts? So not wanting to eat the equivalent of an entire tart by myself, I brought two of the small tarts to work. And they were a complete hit! That creamy nutty filling, the tart raspberries, and crunchy crust is what my summer dreams are made of.

Even though the recipe looks long and maybe a bit overwhelming, I promise that if done in steps, it’s super easy and almost completely fool proof.

Tofu is one of my favorite additions to all things creamy that need some sort of structure. What are some of your favorite “hidden” ingredients?


Creamy Roasted Hazelnut Butter

About five or six years back, I was in a Middle East specialty grocery store and found a jar of hazelnut butter.  Not just the normal Nutella themed chocolate and hazelnut, but straight up hazelnut butter and it was delicious! Since that time I have yet to locate it in another grocery store and I’m too lazy and/or cheap to buy it online when it’s so easy to make!

Basically, so stupidly easy I’m kicking myself for not doing it sooner, but to be fair, I was on a regular old peanut butter kick and then cashew butter – both also delicious.

Creamy Hazelnut Butter

Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 pound raw hazelnuts
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 T sugar, honey, or agave
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Directions

  1. Preheat over to 350F.
  2. Arrange hazelnuts on a foil lined baking tray and roast in the over for 7-10 minutes or until a light golden brown.
  3. Let cool just slightly and transfer to a clean towel. To remove the skins of the hazelnuts (they’re kind of bitter), scoop the hot hazelnuts into a pile in the center of the towel (take care due to the high heat of the nuts). Bring the four corners of the tea towel together and gather it up in one hand, so that all of your hazelnuts are scooped up in the bottom of the tea towel. Using your other hand, squish the bottom and the sides of the tea towel so that all the hazelnuts are rubbing up against each other. Do this for a couple minutes until most of the skins are removed.
  4. Separate out the skins from the nuts. I use a slotted serving spoon – it’s big enough to get more than a few nuts at a time and the holes are small enough that the nuts won’t fall through but the skins will.
  5. Place warm nuts* in a food processor and grind until smooth. Add in vanilla, salt, and sweetener (if desired) and continue to blend until a smooth butter is formed – yes, it should be kind of runny. If it hasn’t yet reached that consistency, just be patient, it will get there.

*Warm nuts tend to work a little better and faster by making the oil more available during the processing.

You can keep it stored in an air tight container. I like mason jars because you can easily see through them and they store about 2 cups perfectly.

My hazelnut butter is a little on the darker side because I toasted the nuts just a bit extra. If you like you’re lighter, just watch very closely and removed when they’ve gathered just a hint of golden. You can also make the butter raw, but won’t be able to remove the skins. Just a bit of trade offs. I also added a touch of sweetness to mine because I was trying to get as close as possible to the flavor I found in that Middle East grocery (which was akin to the chocolate hazelnut without the chocolate, but still some sweetness).

Stick around for a to-die-for dessert coming to the blog in the next couple of weeks that features this fantastic spread – hazelnutty goodness.

What are your favorite nuts butters? Do you stick with the classic peanut butter or almond or branch out into walnut, pecan, cashew, and hazelnut?