by Chef Randy I
f you’ve got a sweet tooth, this recipe is a way to fulfill your craving for something sweet. It features dates, which are naturally sweet, low in sodium, rich in potassium and contain a fair amount of selenium. (Selenium can help lower the risk heart disease as well as help keep our immune system healthy.)
Now, even though dates are very nutritional by themselves, I’m not saying this is a super-nutritional recipe. Far from it. In addition to the dates, it includes a lot of other sweet tasting carbohydrates such as figs, cranberries, brown sugar and honey. So if you need to watch your sugar intake, this may not be the best recipe for you.
I will say that it is a good recipe and that your friends and family, who need that once-in-a-while sugar infusion, will enjoy eating it.
1 large egg
2 ½ tablespoons golden brown sugar (firmly packed)
2 ½ tablespoons butter (melted)
2 tablespoons orange blossom honey
1 ¾ teaspoons orange peel (finely grated)
½ cup unsalted pistachios (shelled)
3 ¼ cups pitted medjool dates (halved lengthwise)
½ cup dried cranberries ½ cup dried black Mission figs (stemmed and halved) Tart crust (see below*)
1 cup Greek yogurt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk egg, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 tablespoons melted butter, honey, and 1 teaspoon orange peel in medium bowl.
Set aside 1 tablespoon of the nuts for garnish. Add remaining nuts and all dried fruit to bowl with egg mixture; toss filling to coat.
Unroll crust onto prepared sheet. Spoon filling into center of crust; spread out in even layer, leaving 1 1/2- to 2-inch border. Fold crust edges over filling (about an inch of the outside crust) pleating occasionally. Brush crust with remaining 1/2 tablespoon melted butter. Finely chop reserved tablespoon of nuts. Mix chopped nuts and remaining 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar in small bowl. Sprinkle over crust.
Bake tart until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling in center, about 40 minutes.
Stir yogurt and remaining 3/4 teaspoon orange peel in small bowl. Serve tart warm or at room temperature with orange-flavored yogurt on the side.
* Crust Ingredients:
3 cups flour
1 cup wheat germ
1 ½ teaspoon sea salt
1 cup plus 4 tablespoons butter 10 – 12 tablespoons cold water
Stir together flour, wheat germ and salt. Cut butter into these dry ingredients (a pastry cutter makes this easy). When the dough is the consistency of rolled oats, sprinkle with enough of the water to hold the dough together. Form into a ball, cover and refrigerate for about an hour before rolling out into a circle approximately ¼ inch thick.