This tart was a dream. They day it was bakes, it was a dream. The day after it was baked, it was a dream. After refrigeration, it was a dream. Seriously it was one of the best things I have made recently.
However, with all things in this world, there must be a "but" somewhere. Be aware that this tart is finicky. Once the shell is baked, you need to patch up any cracks before pouring in the filling because once that filling has leaked, it will stick to the tin like a johnson's back sticker.
For the dough:
1 cup flour
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup chilled butter, cut into cubes
1 Tbsp ice water
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
For the tart filling:
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
1 cup (80g) sliced almonds
1/2 tsp almond extract
For the dough: Mix the flour and sugar in a food processor. Add the butter and mix or pulse until the butter is in very small pieces. Add the water and extracts and mix until the dough is smooth and comes together. Press the dough into a removable bottom tart shell using your hand. Save a small piece of dough in case you need to patch up any holes after it is pre-baked.
Put the tart shell in the freezer and chill thoroughly. To bake the shell, preheat the oven to 375F and bake for 20-30 minutes, until it is set and light golden-brown. Remove from the oven and patch any holes with leftover dough.
For the tart filling: Line the rack under the one you plan to use with a sheet of aluminum foil to catch any spills and drips (this will happen).
Heat the cream, sugar, and salt in a big, wide heavy-duty pot (make sure it's big) until it begins to boil. Continue to cook and when it starts to foam up, remove it from the heat and stir in the almonds and almond extract. Scrape the filling into the shell. Make sure there are no clumps or piles of almonds and that everything is evenly distributed, then put the filled tart shell into the oven.
Remove the tart from the oven when the filling is the color of coffee with a light touch of cream in it and there are no large pockets of gooey white filling, about 30 minutes. Let the tart cool a few minutes on a cooling rack.
Carefully slide a knife between the tart and the pan to loosen it so the sides don’t come off when you remove the ring. To remove the ring, rest the tart on top of a solid object (like a tall jar) and gently coax the ring off. Slip a large spatula underneath it to return the tart to a cooling rack.
Once completely cool, run a long chef’s knife under the tart to release it from the bottom. If it’s stubborn, set the tart on top of a warm stove burner for a second or two and you should be able to pry it off.
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