This summer at the downtown farmer's market, I found a vendor there one day with locally produced granulated maple sugar and maple butter, and I quickly snagged the largest jar of the sugar that they had, knowing that I could find at least 101 uses for it.
This is my maple-walnutty version of the classic Canadian sweet, the butter tart. It's similar to English treacle tarts, or Southern pecan pie, and not dissimilar to the molasses-based Shoofly pie of the Amish - it basically seems to be a buttery crust filled with a sugar-intense, gooey filling. Everything else is optional, except for the sighs of delight, and maybe the wish for a vial of insulin.
Maple-Walnut Butter Tart
For the press-in butter crust
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons packed granulated maple sugar
- 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted and then cooled
- 1 egg
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
- golden raisins
- chopped walnuts, almost to the point of being pulverized
- granulated maple sugar
- Make the crust by mixing together the flour and sugar and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add the egg yolk and mix well, pressing it into a ball.
- Rip off a portion of the dough and press it into your tart pan. Repeat with more dough - you will likely have some of this dough left over. Wrap it in plastic wrap and keep it for another use.
- Lay down a small piece of parchment in the tart shells and add some baking weights or dried beans and and blind bake them at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes.
- Remove and let cool.
- Raise the oven temp to 400 degrees F.
- Mix together the maple syrup, 2 T of brown sugar and 2 T of maple sugar.
- Add the melted butter and stir to combine well.
- Add the egg, stir. Add the salt and vanilla and mix until it is nicely smooth.
- Place a few golden raisins and some of the chopped walnut in the bottom of the tart shells.
- Sprinkle some granulated maple sugar over it and pour in the sugar mixture.
- Top with a bit more of the chopped walnut and sprinkle some granulated maple sugar on top and bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until just set.