I remember a time not too long ago when I wasn’t too keen on cranberries. Cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving was fine but other than that, I rarely ate the fruit. For some reason this year, I have grown quite fond of them. Don’t ask me where I got this sudden change of heart because I have no idea. What I do know is that all now I want to do is create cranberry dishes. So, I put on my thinking cap and decided to pair it with almonds and chocolate to make a cranberry streusel chocolate almond tart. Let me tell you right now, this is the ultimate winter holiday tart. It checks off all the boxes and is just so addictingly good. Ready to start baking?
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
Whenever I’m trying to come up with flavor combinations, I turn to Google for some assistance. According to the web, cranberries pair well with almonds and I already knew it works with chocolate, so why not combine all three together? Hence, this amazing cranberry streusel chocolate almond tart!
To incorporate the chocolate, we’re going to make a chocolate crust. Make the crust either by hand or in the food processor, mixing just until combined. The dough will be too soft to roll out immediately, so let it chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Alternatively, you can make the crust the night before and let it rest in the fridge overnight.
Chocolate crusts can be a bit trickier to bake then regular crust because it’s already brown. We’re going to first blind bake the crust and finish baking it with the filling so you don’t have to worry so much about under-baking it.
While the chocolate crust is cooling, make the streusel. Combine the ingredients excluding the almonds and chocolate chips, cutting in the butter. You want to essentially break up the butter into small pieces and have each morsel coated with the remaining dry ingredients. You can use a pastry cutter to make this task easier or just use your hands.
I found 1/2 cup of chocolate chips to be the right amount for me but if you want to add a little more, it doesn’t hurt.
Set the streusel aside and make the almond cream filling. To make the filling, cream together the butter with the powdered sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, until they are fully incorporated. Add the vanilla extract and a touch of almond extract. Finish by stirring in the superfine almond flour. Make sure to use superfine almond flour to get the correct consistency.
Spread the almond cream filling in an even layer in the chocolate crust followed by the fresh cranberries and streusel. It may seem like too much streusel, but just go with it. Trust me, it’ll work out.
Bake the cranberry streusel chocolate almond tart until the top is lightly browned. It won’t be a dark golden color, we just want it to be lightly browned. Let the tart cool completely before slicing.
I like to finish the tart with a good dusting of powdered sugar to add the final touch. Plus it just looks so darn pretty, doesn’t it?
I always have an idea of what a dish or dessert will taste like but it always surprises me when it comes out even better. This was another one of those instances. The subtle almond filling with the tart cranberries and bits of chocolate throughout really is a match made in heaven. The best part? It doesn’t taste heavy or too sweet, making it entirely appropriate to eat one hefty slice!
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