Friday, 10 April 2015

Treacle Tarts, without Breadcrumbs (Wheat Free)

Last autumn, I tried my hand at making a treacle tart, but I shook it up by adding some apple to it to make something that was somewhat toffee apple inspired. I was delicious, but very much an experiment. I was going to try the recipe again, but then I just... forgot about it. Until this week, when my companion's mother invited me round for tea, and requested in jest some treacle tarts as payment for her company. So, here they are!

However, these are a little different to traditional treacle tarts, insofar as they don't use breadcrumbs. I used breadcrumbs the last time, and found it a little squishy, and I wanted something with a little more firmness. Also, I don't eat bread so I find buying bread just to make breadcrumbs is sort of backwards. So, I researched what I could use instead, on many a baking forum, and one forum user suggested ground almonds.

They turned out really well, and my companion's family liked them (so I think they think I'm good girlthing material for their child/sibling), the mother comparing them to something like a gingerbread tart. Generally speaking, treacle tart isn't spiced, but I like to add a little bit to mine just for flavour.

☑ Soya (check for soya lecithin)
☑ Yeast
☑ Wheat

☒ Eggs
☒ Dairy
☒ Gluten
☒ Nuts
☒ Refined sugar products

For four 4 inch (10 centimetre) tarts, or one 7 inch (18 centimetre) round tart

For the pastry:
  • 1 ounce icing sugar
  • 2 ounces butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces
  • 3 ounces spelt flour
  • 1 ounce cornflour
  • 1 tablespoon cold milk/water

For the filling:
  • 1 ounce treacle
  • 5 ounces golden syrup
  • 4 ounces ground almonds
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon 

  • Preheat the oven to 180˚C (350˚F, Gas Mk.4).
  • Put the butter, sugar, flour and cornflour in a mixing bowl and rub together with your fingertips into a crumble.
  • Mix in about a tablespoon of milk (or water), mixing with your hand, until you get a nice smooth, pliable dough.  Roll out to a ¼ inch (0.5 centimetre) thickness.
  • This amount will line one 7 inch round tart tin, or 4 four-inch tarts, and you don’t need to grease them. Cut out rounds to fit the individual cases, or press into a round tart tin, using the rolling pin to trim the excess falling over the edges.
  • Gently heat the treacle and syrup together until warm and runny, either in a saucepan over low heat, or in a heatproof jug in the microwave for about a minute on medium power.
  • Remove from heat, and stir in the ground almonds, spices, lemon zest and juice and mix thoroughly. Allow the mixture to cool slightly, so the almonds can soak.
  • Once cool enough to touch add the egg and beat immediately until smooth and pourable. Divide the filling among the individual pastry cases, if using, or pour into the large pastry case.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes for four individual tarts, or 25 to 30 minutes for one large tart.
  • Allow to cool completely in the tin before removing. The pastry will slightly shrink, making it easier to remove.

You can use any leftover dough to decorate the tarts. Traditionally, treacle tarts are decorated with a lattice pattern, the weaves sometimes being twisted. I used some cut outs because I didn’t have enough left over dough to make lattices.

THIS TIME IN 2014: No blog
THIS TIME IN 2013: Gingerbread of the Gingeriest Proportions (Wheat Free)

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