This dish took a lot of thinking. In my head, I knew what I wanted it to be, but it took quite a bit of problem-solving to make it into a (delicious) reality.
First, I knew that I wanted to use crushed candy canes, and not peppermint extract, for the peppermint filling. But I had originally thought of this tart as having more of a creme brulee-type filling, and I knew that the peppermint powder wouldn't dissolve evenly in that type of dish. So I was deciding between adding yogurt and tofu, and I wisely chose yogurt, which worked perfectly. The peppermint dissolved into the yogurt, which in turn blended easily with the half and half.
The glaze is about 3-4 minutes on the stove short of becoming jelly (who knew jelly was so easy to make?). You need to pour it warm, just as soon as it stops bubbling, because it becomes almost solid very quickly. If you reduce it a little less, it would probably be easier to work with.
These taste delicious, but what I love most are the colors. The red and pink and green are so Christmas-y, but they'd be elegant in any season.
Peppermint Tart with Pomegranate Glaze
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
1 large egg
2 tbsp water
2 candy canes
1 6 oz carton vanilla yogurt
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp half and half
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup Pom pomegranate juice
2 tbsp water
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup salted pistachios
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a food processor, grind candy canes into a fine powder. Set aside.
3. Place flour, sugar, salt, butter, one egg, and water in a food processor. Pulse until blended into one large ball of dough.
4. Roll dough out on a floured surface, into an approximately 12" circle. Roll the dough up onto the pin and lay it on top of a 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Alternatively, roll dough into a 20" circle, cut away dough one section at a time, and press into 20 individual mini tart molds.
5. Press the dough into the pan so it fits into all the edges, particularly on the sides of the tart pan. Trim the excess dough from the edges of the pan.
6. Refrigerate the tart dough for 10 minutes.
7. Remove the tart from the refrigerator, and line the inside of the tart with aluminum foil. Place pie weights (or dried beans, or rice) in the foil. For mini tarts, there is no need to use pie weights, just prick the bottoms of the tarts with a fork.
8. Bake for 30 minutes (the tart is easier to bake if you place the tart shell on a cookie sheet) for a large tart, and 15-18 minutes for mini tarts.
9. If you are making a large tart, remove the tart from the oven and remove the foil and pie weights. Return to the oven and continue to bake for another 3-5 minutes, or until the tartâ€™s edges are is golden, but not browned. Place on a counter or table to cool the tart shell.
10. Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees.
11. In a bowl, combine peppermint powder and yogurt, whisk until incorporated. Add 1/4 cup half and half, and 1/4 cup sugar, whisk until combined. Add 2 tbsp half and half, and 1/4 cup sugar, whisk until combined. Add egg, whisk until beaten and combined.
12. Pour the filling into the cooled tart shell (or mini tart shells) and bake 30 minutes (15-20 minutes for mini tarts), or until the filling is set but still wobbly. Allow to cool.
13. Pour Pom juice, water and sugar into a small saucepan. Heat on medium until simmering, and allow to simmer until reduced to a thick syrup (about 6-8 minutes).
14. While glaze is thickening, smash pistachios into powder and small pieces.
15. Remove glaze from heat. As soon as bubbles stop, but while the glaze is still hot, pour onto cooled tart. Garnish with chopped pistachios, and serve.
Makes one large tart or 20 mini tarts.
And I'm submitting these as part of the mini-pie revolution roundup!