Cranberry Pecan Lime Tart
This recipe, created by Wendy Roberts, won Best Dessert in VT's 2011 Chefs' Challenge. As a kid, Roberts loved baking holiday cookies for her neighbors. "I realized I really liked the joy it brought to other people," she says. That's why she enrolled in a baking and pastry program and left her desk job to work full-time for a bakery. Wendy thought up this version of a pecan tart while rushing to make dessert for a party. Lime vodka "leaves behind a lighter, crisper flavor" than whiskey in the rich, chewy filling.
- 1 ½ sticks (6 oz.) butter or margarine, softened
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 large egg yolk
- ½ tsp. vanilla
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- ⅓ cup light corn syrup
- ⅓ cup molasses
- 2 Tbs. lime vodka
- ½ tsp. salt
- 3 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
- ¾ cup chopped pecans
- ⅓ cup chopped dried cranberries
- ⅛ tsp. grated lime zest
1. To make Crust: Cream butter and sugar in bowl with electric mixer 3 minutes, or until smooth and fluffy. Add egg yolk and vanilla, and beat until smooth. Add flour 1 cup at a time, beating until just combined and dough comes together. Knead dough with hands 3 or 4 times, then shape into flat disk. Press dough disk onto bottom and sides of 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom, and freeze 2 hours, or overnight.
2. To make Filling: Preheat oven to 350°F. Beat eggs in large bowl until frothy. Whisk in brown sugar, corn syrup, molasses, vodka, and salt until sugar dissolves. Beat in melted butter. Fold in pecans, cranberries, and lime zest with spatula.
3. Remove Crust from freezer, and place in center of baking sheet. Spread Filling in Crust, making sure cranberries and pecans are evenly distributed. Bake tart 35 to 45 minutes, or until Filling is set and Crust is golden-brown. Cool in pan before unmolding and serving.
January/February 2011 p.77