This recipe is a beautiful dessert for all of you on gluten-free diets. Adapted from the book Pure Desserts by Alice Medrich, it’s so yummy the other people at the table will never know the flour is missing! This is relatively high in protein, relatively low in sugar, and contains no wheat products for guilt-free indulgence. Quinoa flour can be purchased at Whole Foods Market, or you can make your own (see below!).
½ cup (2.5oz) unblanched or blanched whole almonds
½ cup organic cane sugar
¼ tsp salt
3/8 tsp almond extract
¾ cup freshly ground quinoa flour
3/8 tsp baking powder
1 large egg
3 Tbsp firm but not hard unsalted butter, cut into a few pieces
3 large juicy plums
3 small apples
9½ inch fluted tart pan with removable bottom
1.) Pre-heat the oven to 375º F.
2.) Generously butter the tart pan.
3.) Combine almonds, sugar, salt, and almond extract in the bowl of a food processor and process until the nuts are finely pulverized.
4.) Add the quinoa flour and baking powder and pulse to mix thoroughly.
5.) Add the egg and butter pieces and pulse until the mixture is damp (with no dry flour showing) and begins to clump around the blade.
6.) Press the dough evenly over the bottom but not up the sides of the pan.
7.) Cut the plums and apples into sixths, and remove the seeds.
8.) Arrange the wedges of fruit, skin side up, over the dough with a little space between each one, alternating apples and plums. Leave about ½ inch of space between the fruit and the edges of the pan. Press the fruit lightly into the almond mixture to prevent it turning on its side during baking.
9.) Bake until the pastry is puffed, deep golden brown at the edges, and nicely golden brown between the fruit, 40-45 minutes. Cool briefly, then loosen or remove the rim of the tart pan.
Serve warm, or at room temperature. This is delicious as-is, and may be served with a dollop of freshly whipped cream or a bit of vanilla ice cream if dairy products are in your diet.
This tart is also amazing with peaches, nectarines, and/or figs as an alternative to plums and apples. Use your imagination, or whatever fruit is beautiful and in season!
Take 1 cup quinoa (preferably organic) and place it in the work bowl of a food processor. Turn on the processor, and process until it is finely ground and has a similar texture to flour. It will be slightly grittier than regular flour. If you don’t have a food processor, you can grind the quinoa in a coffee grinder ¼ cup at a time. Make sure you measure the flour for the tart recipe, not the whole quinoa!
Ground quinoa can be cooked the same way as Cream of Wheat for a high protein, gluten-free breakfast cereal. Bring 1 cup water to a rolling boil with a pinch of salt. Add 1/3 cup ground quinoa, reduce heat to low, and stir constantly for two to three minutes until it is the texture of porridge. Add a little brown sugar to taste, and top with nuts, dried fruit, or whatever you like.