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Gluten-Free Dessert Pastry

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I worked with many different combinations of flours before settling on this one. I love the flavor of the oat flour, but it is so fine that when I tried using all oat flour the pastry crumbled much too easily. So I combined it with corn flour, which is finely ground cornmeal; Bob’s Red Mill produces the version I used. Millet flour will also work, but it has a chalkier flavor. The almond flour absorbs moisture and helps hold the dough together. The dough will crack if you roll it out cold, so I roll it between pieces of plastic before I chill it. Then I remove it from the refrigerator and let it soften just enough so that I can line the tart pans without it cracking.

Ingredients

  • 160

    grams (approximately 1 1/4 cups) corn flour or finely ground cornmeal

  • 150

    grams (approximately 1 1/3 cups) oat flour (make sure it is from a gluten-free facility)

  • 168

    grams (6 ounces) butter, preferably French style Plugrà

  • 4

    grams (1/2 teaspoon) fine sea salt

  • 50

    grams (approximately 1/4 rounded cup) sugar

  • 40

    grams (approximately 1/3 rounded cup) almond flour

  • 9

    grams (approximately 2 teaspoons) vanilla extract

  • 63

    grams egg (approximately 1 extra large plus 2 teaspoons), beaten

    Preparation

    1. Sift together the corn flour and the oat flour. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a bowl with a rubber spatula, cream the butter and salt on medium speed for about 1 minute, taking care not to whip. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle with a rubber spatula and add the sugar. Combine with the butter at low speed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle.
    2. Add the almond flour and vanilla extract and combine at low speed.
    3. Gradually add the egg and one fourth of the flour mixture. Beat at low speed until just incorporated. Stop the machine and scrape down the bowl and the paddle.
    4. Gradually add the remaining flour and mix just until the dough comes together.
    5. Scrape the dough out of the bowl, weigh it and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Place each piece between sheets of plastic wrap and gently roll out to a 10-1/2 inch circle. Place on a sheet pan and refrigerate for 1 hour or (preferably) longer.
    6. Very lightly butter a 9-inch tart pan or pie dish (depending on the recipe you’ll be using this for). You should not be able to see the butter. Remove one sheet of dough from the refrigerator, and if it is very stiff set it out for about 5 minutes, until it’s pliable. Ease the dough into 9-inch tart pan or pie dish. If the dough cracks, just pinch the cracked edges together. You do not have to worry with gluten-free dough about over working and stiffening the pastry, but try not to press the dough thinner in some places than in others.

    Tip

    • To prebake: I don’t use pie weights, because the grain flours tend to stick to the lining. The crust shouldn’t buckle. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. With a fork, pierce the bottom of the crust in rows. Place the tart pan on a baking sheet and place in the oven on the middle rack. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until lightly browned and dry. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely before filling.
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