Whisky, walnut and brown butter tart with atholl brose ice cream
- December 2015
- Serves 10-12
- Hands-on time 1 hour 15 min, oven time 50 min, plus 24 hours chilling and freezing
A rich, boozy, sticky, crunchy (and other good things) dessert. We’ve packed the flavours of Scotland into this whisky, walnut and brown butter tart, then served it with atholl brose-inspired ice cream.
If you like that, then you’ll fall head over heels moreishly crunchy honey and walnut tart.
- 46.8g (17.5g saturated)
- 45.5g (31.8g sugars)
For the pastry
- 175g plain flour, plus extra to dust
- 50g icing sugar
- 90g chilled butter, cubed
- 1 medium free-range egg yolk
- 1 tbsp cold water
For the filling
- 300g walnut halves
- 120g butter
- 150g golden syrup
- 100ml double cream
- 2 tbsp whisky
- 5 medium free-range egg yolks
- 150g light muscovado sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
- 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
For the atholl brose ice cream
- 150ml whisky
- 500ml double cream
- 100ml full cream milk
- 7 large free-range egg yolks (see tip)
- 125g heather honey
- Two or three days beforehand, start the ice cream. Pour 120ml of the whisky into a small non-stick pan, heat briefly, remove the pan from the heat, then carefully light with a kitchen match/taper (to burn off a little of the alcohol). Cover the pan with a lid after a few seconds to put out the flames. Add the cream and milk to the pan and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and honey in a heatproof mixing bowl with an electric mixer until thick, pale and mousse-like.
- Pour the hot milk and cream onto the yolks and stir together, then return the mixture to the pan over a gentle heat. Cook, stirring all the time, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. Stir in the remaining whisky, then cool, cover and chill overnight.
- The next day, churn the mixture in an ice cream maker. (If you don’t have one, pour into a freezerproof container, then cover and freeze until firm. Transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth, then return to the container and refreeze. Repeat the blending and freezing twice more, to break down the ice crystals in the mixture.) Freeze for 24 hours.
- For the pastry, sift the flour, icing sugar and a pinch of salt into a food processor, add the chilled butter and whizz until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs (you could do this by hand, rubbing the butter into the flour with your fingers). Beat the egg yolk briefly with the water. Tip onto the flour mixture and pulse (or mix by hand with a spatula) for a few seconds until the mixture sticks together in lumps. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly until smooth. (If soft, wrap in cling film and chill for 1 hour.)
- Roll out the pastry thinly and use to line a 23cm x 4cm deep loose- bottomed flan tin. Prick the base here and there with a fork, then chill for 20 minutes.
- Heat the oven to 190°C/fan170°C/ gas 5. Line the pastry case with a sheet of crumpled baking paper and a thin layer of baking bean and bake for 15 minutes or until the edges are a light biscuit colour. Carefully remove the paper and baking beans, protect the edges of the case by covering with strips of foil, then return it to the oven for 5-7 minutes until the base of the pastry case is dry and biscuit coloured too. Remove from the oven, discard the foil strips and set aside.
- For the filling, spread the walnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and lightly toast in the oven for 7 minutes. Leave the nuts to cool, then arrange over the base of the pastry case in an even layer. Put the butter in a small pan and leave it over a low heat, swirling the pan every now and then, until lightly browned and smelling nutty. Stir in the golden syrup, double cream and whisky.
- Lightly beat the egg yolks together in a mixing bowl until smooth, thick and slightly paler, then stir in the whisky cream mixture, muscovado sugar, vanilla extract, nutmeg and a pinch of salt. Pour the mixture evenly over the walnuts, then bake for 30 minutes or so until the surface of the filling is nicely caramelised. Remove the tart and leave to cool for around 30 minutes. Serve warm or cold, cut into wedges, with scoops of the atholl brose ice cream.
Prepare the ice cream up to 1 month in advance. Make the tart up to 48 hours ahead, then cover and keep chilled. Prepare the pastry to the end of step 4, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 1 month.
Atholl brose is a traditional Scottish drink made with cream, whisky, honey and oatmeal milk.
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