Public transportation strikes are a frequent occurence here in Milan and are a huge inconvenience. They cause complete chaos; traffic is terrible, it’s impossible to get a taxi and people are more frantic than usual. Yesterday, was one of those days, and the second one this month might I add! As a business English teacher, I hop around the city by public transportation teaching lessons in different companies. Whenever there’s a transport strike, I can’t get around. I don’t drive in Milan, nor do I intend to attempt it. When I lived in Canada I spent most of my time in the car and here in Italy it’s the exact opposite, and I like it!
That said, I had to cancel my afternoon lessons as they are too far to get to on foot. I got up at 7am, had my Apple Cinnamon Rice Porridge for breakfast, got ready and walked to my morning lesson. It was a beautiful and sunny morning and the walk did me good. On the way home I stopped into this new organic supermarket to pick up a few things, among which were fresh blueberries and raspberries! Yum!
I got home had a quick lunch and got to preparing this delicious treat you see in the pictures. I had a rough idea of what I wanted to make, but the exact details were blurry. I knew it had to be a sugar-free and flourless dessert, so I started by pulverizing some nuts and cooking down the fruit, and within 30 minutes, I had these wonderful Berry-Nutty Upside-Down Tarts!
Hooray for metro strikes and successful experiments!
As you can see from the picture above, the first one broke apart on me when I took it out of the tart pan, but it made for a great photo op, as you can see the berry deliciousness oozing out from underneath the nutty crust. Needless to say I ate it in 2.3 seconds and if I may say so myself, it was scrumptious.
I then sat down to write the recipe in a hurry. I don’t always remember to measure when I’m cooking and baking, but it’s a habit I’m learning now that I’ve decided to blog about it :-).
Berry-Nutty Upside-Down Tarts
Makes 6 Tarts (10 cm diameter)
Nutty Gluten Free Crust:
- 100 GR Pack of Blanched Almonds
- 70 GR Pack of Walnuts
- 2 Tbsp of Sunflower Seed Oil
- 2 Tbsp of Barley Malt
- 250 GR of Fresh Berries , about 2 cups (I used 125g of each blueberries and raspberries)
- 1 Tsp of Vanilla Bean (I used the scrapings of a vanilla bean pod, but you could also use pure vanilla extract)
- 2 Tbsp of Barley Malt
- 1 Heaping Tbsp of Kuzu
- 3 Tbsp of Cold Water
Almond flour (aka. finely ground almonds) for dusting.
For the Nutty Gluten-Free Crust:
- Add almonds and walnuts to a food processor and blend until pulverized to a flour.
- Transfer to a mixing bow, add Sunflower Oil and Barley Malt and mix u ntil you get a nice and compact ball of dough.
- Form into an oblong shape and slice into 6 equal pieces.
For the Berry Filling:
- Rinse berries in cold water and add barley malt and vanilla to a small pot over medium heat for about 10 minutes. The raspberries will produce a natural liquid as they cook down.
- Dissolve 1 Tbsp of Kuzu with 3 Tbsp of cold water and add to berry mixture.
- Cook until mixture thickens.
- Brush tart forms with sunflower oil and press nutty crust mixture into the bottom of the form.
- Top with berry filling.
- Bake on 180 degree celsius for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool about 10 minutes.
- Turn upside down onto a plate, dust with almond flour.