Gluten-free with a dense almond flour crust, this tart is well suited to fall and winter fruits. It tastes best served shortly after cooking, so plan accordingly.

Maple Caramel Apple Tart

Serves 8

Recipe by Jeannette Bessinger, CHHC, and Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS

Almond Crust

2½ cups blanched almond flour (such as Honeyville)

2½ Tbs. salted pastured butter, room temperature 

1 Tbs. pure maple syrup

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 egg

Apple Filling

1½ Tbs. dry sweetener (such as palm sugar or erythritol), or 1 packet stevia

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground ginger

5–6 medium-sized sweet apples, cored, and thinly sliced (try Crispin, Jonagold, or Golden Delicious)

2 tsp. lemon juice

2 Tbs. pastured butter, melted

Maple Caramel Glaze

3 Tbs. pure maple syrup 

1½ Tbs. pastured butter 

Pinch of sea salt 

1½ Tbs. organic half and half

To Make Crust: Combine almond flour, butter, syrup, vanilla, and egg in food processor, and pulse until it holds together, forming a dough ball. If mixture is too dry, add 1 Tbs. chilled water. Press dough evenly into an 11-inch tart pan, and set aside.

To Make Filling: Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a small cup combine sweetener, cinnamon, and ginger, and stir with fork to mix well. Place apple slices in large bowl a few slices at a time, and sprinkle spice mix and lemon juice over each layer. Drizzle butter over all, and toss gently with your hands to coat all the slices.
Layer seasoned apple slices on top of tart crust, starting around the outside, forming a ring, and moving inward to form a spiral until entire crust is covered. Cover tart with foil, and bake 45–60 minutes, or until apples are fairly tender. Remove foil for final 10 minutes of cooking time to brown crust lightly.

To Make Glaze: While tart is baking, combine syrup and butter in small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk mixture constantly for 3 minutes. Carefully add salt and half and half (it may spatter), and whisk constantly 1 minute more, until mixture is a deep caramel color. Watch closely to prevent burning. Set aside to cool.
Remove tart from oven and allow to cool, about 10 minutes. Drizzle glaze over tart, brushing gently to evenly coat apples, but being careful not to displace them. (If glaze has thickened too much for easy spreading, rewarm it briefly to liquefy.) Allow tart to cool nearly to room temperature before slicing and serving.

PER SERVING: 427 cal; 10g pro; 29g total fat (7g sat fat); 36g carb; 47mg chol; 104mg sod; 7g fiber; 25g sugars

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