Périgord, in northern Aquitaine is an area well known for its truffles, foie gras, and walnuts. Although the groves you see today are somewhat newer trees, this is talk of evidence which suggests that walnut groves have flourished in this corner of the world for the last 17,000 years (yes, I said 17,000 years!) and they have been staple of the regions thriving economy since the 10th century.
This tart is a traditional recipe of sweet pastry (paté sucre), walnuts, eggs, sugar and cream … what more could you want on a cold winters evening (okay, maybe a spot of ice cream to go with!)
Recipe adapated from Recettes de France.
- 1 quantity sweet short crust pastry – see note.
- 80g walnut meal (ground walnuts)
- 40g roughly chopped walnuts
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 140g caster sugar
- 140ml heavy cream
- 200ml milk
- Pinch of salt
- Plain flour for rolling out your pastry
Note: Check out this recipe for sweet short crust pastry from last year. It’s my go to recipe for sweet pastry and so easy that now I can get my kids to knock it out for me. They love to make this!
How to do it
Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. Roll out the pastry and line a loose bottomed tart tin (approx 23cm in diameter). Place the lined tin in the fridge or freezer for 5 minutes or so to chill.
When the pastry has chilled, line the pastry in the tin with foil and fill the baking weights or rice. Blind bake the pastry case in the oven for 10 minutes. When the time is up, remove the foil and baking weights before returning the pastry case to the oven for another 5 minutes or until lightly golden.
While the tart case is baking, whisk together the eggs, caster sugar, milk, cream and ground walnuts. When combined, stir through the roughly chopped walnuts and a touch of salt.
When the case has finished blind baking, pour in the egg and nut mixture and return the tart to the oven and reduce the heat to 150 degrees celsius. Cook for approximately 30 minutes or until firm (but a bit wobbly) in the centre.
Slice, serve with double cream or ice cream and enjoy (a lot!)