This rustic dessert is from the Lombardy region of Northern Italy, where it's called sbrisolona. It's crumbly, buttery and nutty; Suzanne Goin thinks of it as a cross between biscotti and shortbread. She recommends dipping chunks of it into the Champagne-spiked sabayon, an airy dessert sauce made with whipped egg yolks.
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3/4 cup natural almonds (4 ounces)
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons fine cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
7 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
Roasted Red Grapes
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter a 9-inch springform pan. Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and toast for 10 minutes, until golden. Let cool slightly, then coarsely chop the almonds. Leave the oven on.
In a small bowl, mix the egg yolk with the orange zest and the extracts. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or rub it in with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in the granulated sugar and brown sugar and the toasted almonds. Gently work in the egg yolk mixture with your hands; the dough should be crumbly.
Transfer the dough to the prepared pan and loosely press the crumbs; the surface should be uneven. Bake for 40 minutes, or until deep golden brown. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely before unmolding.
Break the tart into large pieces. Pile on a platter with the Roasted Red Grapes and serve with the Champagne Sabayon.
The almond tart can be stored in an airtight container for 2 days.
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