Let’s talk about that Rhubarb lattice. It is a bit over the top, right? Not something you throw together quickly. It’s a lot of work. But it isn’t hard, or advanced, just..…patience-testing. Working with poached rhubarb was a new experience for me, and I’m so excited with the results. There are so many ideas I have now for ways to use it! (Wrapping around cakes, making rosettes…) But the great news is that if you decide to make this tart (which I hope you do!) and forgo the lattice (which I’d totally understand), it is still going to look and taste amazing. The rest of this tart comes together in a snap, so you can have a slice to enjoy with your coffee in no time at all. Ideally, we’d all be having this outside, in a sunny spot, but we may have to wait a bit longer for that. So in the meantime, let’s enjoy the taste of spring and summer in the form of this gorgeous Rhubarb Raspberry Almond Cream tart.
Let me share the little bit of knowledge I picked up on rhubarb as I was at the St Lawerence Market this week in downtown Toronto hoping, hoping they had some fresh stalks. (They did – local, young, fresh rhubarb from Ontario – Yay!) Did you know it was a vegetable? I didn’t!! Make sure to look for firm, shiny stalks that are blemish free. Larger ones tend to be a bit tougher, and of course, remove the leaves as they are toxic. Store it in the fridge for a few days, or chop and freeze for months. You can bake it from frozen, so stock up your freezer while it’s in prime season April to June.
The original inspiration for this rhubarb tart came from this post and I made it the first time following her recipe exactly. However I felt I needed more rhubarb taste in my life and decided to top it with a gorgeous hot pink raspberry rhubarb compote. The compote cooks up super fast, and gives the lattice something to adhere to as well. I also double the amount of almond cream as my tart pan was bigger than hers.
Let’s talk about all of the deliciousness going on here! The buttery and tender shortbread crust is the perfect base for the sweet-tart flavours it supports. The almond cream layer, which bakes up with a beautiful and fluffy cake-like texture, is comprised of a simple whisked together mixture of sugar, eggs, almond meal, almond extract, browned butter (omg) and rum (yes!) which is topped off with that beautiful raspberry and rhubarb compote that you should probably make extra of to slather on a piece of toast like, right now.
If you don’t have a tart pan with a removable bottom, you’ll be ok making this in an 8 inch square pan, or even a small pie dish, but ideally, for the quantities I’ve included, you’ll use a 7″ by 11″ rectangular tart pan with a removable bottom.
Let this be your first taste of Summer! Delicious tangy and buttery layers of shortbread, almond cream and rhubarb combine in one perfect slice.
- 1 1/4 cups All Purpose Flour
- 2/3 cup Powdered Sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 1 Stick (1/2 Cup) Unsalted Butter, chilled and cut into cubes
- 1 Egg Yolk
- 1 Tbsp Heavy Cream
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
- 1 1/2 Cups Almond Flour
- 2/3 Cup Sugar
- 2 Eggs
- 2 Tbsp Rum
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- Zest of one lemon
- 1/2 Tsp Almond Extract
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1 Cup Fresh or Frozen Rhubarb
- 1 Cup Fresh Raspberries
- 2 Tsp Lemon Juice
- 1/4 Cup Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Corn Starch
- Pinch of Salt
- 5-7 Large Stalks of Rhubarb
- 1 Cup Water
- 1/2 Sugar
- Add flour, powdered sugar and salt to the bowl of your food processor and pulse to combine, about 5 one second pulses.
- Scatter with butter cubes and pulse until the mixture has no large clumps remaining, about 20-25 one second pulses.
- Combine the egg yolk, cream and vanilla in a small bowl and, with the machine running, pour through the feed tube. Let the mixture process until the dough clumps into a ball, about 15-20 seconds. Turn the dough out onto your clean counter and gather into a disk, wrap in plastic and let it chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Lightly flour your work surface and the chilled dough. Gently roll it out just slightly larger than your tart pan and about 3/16th of an inch thickness. Place it in your tart pan and press it into the sides, ensuring there is even thickness the entire way around. Line the dough with foil and fill with pie weights, dried beans or lentils and bake until just beginning to brown, about 12-15 minutes.
- Melt your 2 Tbsp of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Let it bubble and foam, gently swirling the pan. When it smells nutty and there are brown bits on the bottom of the pan, remove from the heat and transfer to a small dish to cool slightly.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond meal, sugar, eggs, rum, vanilla, zest, almond extract and salt. Add in the cooled brown butter (warm is ok). Add to your partially baked tart shell, smoothing the top, and bake until set and golden, about 20 minutes. Cool completely before topping with compote and lattice.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the fruit and lemon juice and cook, stirring occasionally until the fruit is broken down and only small soft pieces of rhubarb remain, about 4 or 5 minutes. Combine the sugar and corn starch in a small bowl and add to the bubbling fruit, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens, about 1 minute. Remove to a small bowl to cool, then spread on top of tart. Proceed with lattice, if making, or serve as is (still delicious!).
- Use a vegetable ‘Y’ peeler to slice long strands of rhubarb. Note this is messy and the first strip tends to splatter juice, so this is not a job for your favorite apron. Continue in this manner until you have about 20-25 strips of rhubarb (the first and second strips off of each stalk are always the best and easiest to work with).
- Place water and sugar in a small pot and bring JUST to a simmer, then immediately turn the burner to low. Working one or two strands at a time, place the rhubarb in the sugar syrup, gently testing for an ‘al dente’ texture after about 10-20 seconds. I had the poaching liquid at a temperature where I could dip my hands in to determine when the rhubarb was ready. Once poached, remove to a parchment sheet and reserve the poaching liquid.
- To create the lattice, line the rhubarb strands up, side by side and touching, a little wider than your tart. Starting at the end near you, fold back every other piece all the way. Take a strand and lay it cross-wise, at the top of your ‘grid’. Fold the pieces back down overtop of the cross wise piece you just laid down, then repeat, this time folding back the pieces that were flat in the previous step. Repeat this process until you have a lattice big enough to cover your tart. Trim the edges, then say a little prayer and gently flip it onto your tart.
- Use kitchen shears to trim the edge so it’s neat, and dab the lattice with some of the reserved poaching liquid using a pastry brush.
Save the extra Rhubarb Simple Syrup you poached your rhubarb in! I'm using mine to make Rhubarb Margaritas.