Italian Almond Tart (Sbrisolona)

This rustic dessert sbrisolona is from the Lombardy region of Northern Italy. It's crunchy, crumbly, buttery and nutty; a cross between biscotti and shortbread.
Serves 8

1 cup toasted almonds, chopped coarsely
1 large egg yolk
Finely grated zest of one lemon
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup plus 1 tablespoons ‘00’ or all-purpose flour
7 tablespoons fine cornmeal or semolina
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Spiced Crème Anglaise (see recipe)
Roasted Pears (see recipe)

1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter a 9-inch pan with a removable bottom or line the bottom of a cake pan with with parchment paper (round, square or rechangle)
2. In a small bowl, mix the egg yolk with the lemon zest and vanilla. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal and baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender 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; the dough should be crumbly.
3. Transfer to the prepared pan. Do not press and compact into the pan. The mixture should be crumbly; the surface should be uneven. Top with 2-3 tablespoons of sliced almonds.
4. Bake for 35 -45 minutes, or until deep golden brown. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely before unmolding.
5. Break the tart into large pieces and serve with the spiced crème anglaise in demitasse cups and roasted pears.

MAKE AHEAD The almond tart can be stored in an airtight container for 2 days.
Or serve with grapes roasted in a 350F oven with some almonds, honey and rosemary for 10 minutes.

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Copyright © Julie Logue Riordan, Cooking with Julie