Cranberry Custard Tart
serves: serves 12-16
Well, you have sat through all of my Thanksgiving recipes. Did anyone save room for dessert? Today we are sharing one of our favorite Thanksgiving tarts, and one of our only “traditional Thanksgiving flavors,” the Cranberry Custard Tart.
Cranberry is a standard Thanksgiving flavor, so I wanted to make a bit of a nod to it especially since I refused to follow any other aspects of the American tradition. The cranberry is cooked down and paired with some orange juice for a wonderful and complex flavor. I prepare the recipe in a 12 inch deep tart pan, if you are using a standard 9 inch tart pan, simply divide the recipe in half.
To start off our meal, and to placate everyone while I was finishing cooking, I served a baked Camembert with sautéed porcini mushrooms and shallots sweetened with some fig jam. Check out our Baked Camembert with Porcini Mushrooms and Fig Jam here. Serve it with some sliced up fresh baguette. Try my French Baguette recipe here!
Here is a little recap of our Chez Nous Dinners style Thanksgiving! I have never quite got along with the traditional Thanksgiving menu though. For me, the holiday is an opportunity to invite all of my international friends and family over to create our own traditions. Most folks our age go to visit their families for the holiday, however, most of our international friends don’t get to participate. The holiday is an American tradition, and a 4 day weekend is generally too short to warrant a $1000 flight home. In come the Russians. My parents and I have made our own tradition of inviting folks over to share the holiday with us…our style. And since Nico and I moved to out new home with our big kitchen, we have been hosting our International Thanksgivings.
So while everyone was snacking away at our appetizer, I had a good half an hour to finish preparing the rest of my thanksgiving meal!
I was never a huge fan of turkey, so I generally prefer to make a big lamb roast. This year, I wanted to make a whole baby goat or lamb! My friend Anwar looked for one for me, and in the end sold me an entire half of a full grown goat, which made a beautiful roast! Check out my recipe for Roast Half Goat with Anchovy, Garlic, and White Wine here!
As friends started to RSVP, I learned that some folks aren’t into lamb and goat, so I decided to add a beef dish. I came across his Ravioli à la monégasque recipe and was hooked! A ravioli filled with chard, spinach, cheeses, and a bit of lamb’s brain (because why wouldn’t you?) is served on top of a stew of beef braised in red wine with carrots and herbs, very much like a Boeuf Bourguignon. Try our Ravioli à la Monégasque recipe here!
As people RSVPd, we had more dietary restrictions, so we also served a gorgeous Lobster dish! I was leafing through Alain Ducasse’s book and came across this combination of lobster and fresh truffle, perfect for our fish eaters. I loved a lot of Ducasse’s recipe and was inspired by his flavor profile, but have simplified this recipe to make it easier for the home cook. Check out our Lobster and Summer Truffle Spaghetti recipe here!
We finished our meal with a beautiful trifecta of desserts! We served our favorite Cannelés Bordelais, a traditional Russian Smetannik, and my single bow to American flavors, a Cranberry Custard Tart. Stay tuned for all of those recipes later this week!
- tart crust:
- 12 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups pastry flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 12 ounce bags of cranberries
- 2 cups sugar
- juice, zest, and peel of 2 oranges
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 4 eggs plus 4 egg yolks
- Mix softened butter and flour together, by hand.
Add salt and a bit of cold water to bring it together into a ball. Add as little water as possible and do not over-mix. This makes for hard crusts.
- Chill for a half an hour.
Roll out and fit into 12 inch tart pan, preferably with 1 inch sides or higher.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
Bake for about 15 minutes to set the crust.
- Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Cook the orange, orange juice, zest,
the peels (qiartered for ease), cranberry, and sugar in a medium sized sauce pan for about 10 minutes until the cranberries are softened and some have popped.
- Separately, mix the eggs and yolks. Add some cranberry to temper the eggs, then combine everything together.
- Pour mixture into the baked shell and bake for another 20 minutes or so until the filling is set.