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Almond shortbread pastry

Something's astir at a few of the best bakery addresses in Paris, and you can tell by the shape of their tarts. They are decidedly, perfectly, unexpectedly square. "We were a bit frustrated with round," says Jean-Charles Carrarini, who along ... Read more

Total time: About 30 minutes, plus chilling time | Makes a generous amount for 1 tart (9-by-9-inch square or 10 inches round)
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons butter, cubed (about 1 inch) and softened
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 6 tablespoons almond meal or ground blanched almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 3/4 cups cake flour

Step 1In a food processor, cream the butter. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. While the machine is running, mix in the granulated sugar, powdered sugar, almond meal and salt just until incorporated.

Step 2Add the egg, beating continuously. Add the flour and pulse just until the dough pulls away from the sides. Form the dough into a ball, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

Note: Adapted from "Eric Kayser's Sweet and Savory Tarts." You can use extra tart dough to make tartlets or cookies. The extra dough also can be frozen for later use. (To defrost, place the frozen dough in the refrigerator the day before you need it to thaw slowly.) Almond meal is available at well-stocked supermarkets and health food stores. To grind almonds, pulse blanched almonds in a food processor until finely ground.
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