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Chestnut-Rosemary Tart or Pan

Growing up, I used to hate eating chestnuts. It’s very typical in Spain to eat them raw or roasted on the fire; and it’s a traditional scene during the fall and winter to see the vendors with their roasting carts on the streets selling roasted chestnuts and other goodies. I did and still do love the smell of roasted chestnuts… it symbolises the beginning of autumn and the beautiful holiday season to come.

And to-day, I actually love to eat them, especially when they are vapor-cooked and so sweet. (I’m still not keen about the raw ones…) And now, I have discovered chestnut flour! My mother says there used to be a lot of desserts and dishes that were made in Southern Spain with chestnut flour. But I’ve never knowingly tried anything nor made anything with it before. But during the Christmas holidays, I stole a number of recipes from my mother’s collection (Mama… remember the recipe of the wilted kale you were asking for the other day…well, I DO have it ;-)).

The other day, I tried experimenting with chestnut flour and almond flour together to make some breakfast bread; and although the flavour was really good, the texture was not quite right. But while I’m still working on perfecting that recipe (to share with all of you), I was intrigued by this one and can’t rave enough about it!

This tart below is de-li-cious!!! Don’t be tempted to add any sweetener (until you make it at least once), as it has just the perfect sweet combination with the sultanas and the chestnut flour, which is quite sweet on its own. Additionally, for those of you with egg allergies or just wanting to make something without eggs, this is a perfect recipe to build upon! And the additional plus is that it is really, totally sugar or sweetener free!

CHESTNUT-ROSEMARY TART (or PAN, as it’s called in Spain)

Ingredients, for one 19cm or 7in diameter-tart (it comes out to about 3cm in height)

  • 150g chestnut flour
  • 250ml water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • a pinch of sea salt
  • 1/4 cup sultana raisins (more if desired, up to 1/2 cup recommended for a sweeter tart)
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • freshly ground rosemary (I used about 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons)

ready for the oven

Process

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (350F). Grease with some olive oil a small tart pan (19cm or 7in diameter). Set aside.
  2. In  a medium bowl, mix the chestnut flour, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and salt. Add the water, whilst whisking until smooth. The mixture will be quite liquid.
  3. Add the sultanas and mix well.
  4. Pour into the tart pan and sprinkle with pine nuts and some ground rosemary or rosemary sprigs over top.
  5. Drizzle the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over top.
  6. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool completely before cutting and serving.

Make it now, and I dare you to have just one piece! Enjoy!

*Just a side note about chestnuts: they are the highest alkaline producing nuts, are a good source of fiber, rich in Vitamin C, rich in folates (folic acid), they are a rich source of mono un-saturated fatty acids, are an excellent source of iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus and zinc. Plus, they contain a number of other Vitamin Bs. And of course, they are gluten free. I wish I would’ve like them more as a child, but now is not too late to start enjoying all their goodness.

**A note on variations possible: you can use other types of dried fruit, such as apricots or prunes instead of the raisins; also, you can use slivered almonds or coarsely ground almonds or another nut instead of the pine nuts. Other fresh or dried herbs can be used as well, such as thyme or oregano. Experiment depending on your taste buds and mood… and above all, have fun with this recipe!

Paleo Mango-Banana Tropical Mini Loafs with Coconut Icing – SABH

While Australia is sweltering, here in London we’ve had below zero temperatures and about three days of snow. But what does that have to do with this recipe? Well, I’m part of the Sweet Adventures Blog Hop, which is hosted by Aussie bloggers, and this month’s theme is “Tropical Paradise”….very appropriate for the Australian summer. Not so much for where I currently live and shop for food. 😉 But I’m not complaining; the snow was gorgeous and having a few days of the beautiful white stuff was amazing and a lovely change of pace from the green and grey.

Anyway, back to the recipe. I wanted to make something truly exotic, since a lot of the recipes already on the hop contain mango. But there are not too many tropical fruits available in London this time of year, unless I went off to some Asian market on the other side of town… not happening in this cold. Plus, I have been back at work again with my graphic design and it was hard to even cook a regular meal.

These mini loafs, of course, can be made into a cupcakes/muffins or into a cake, if the recipe is doubled. I love the combination of the mango and banana, and wanted to add a slight touch of coconut with the icing and desiccated coconut on top as garnish. I hope you try them and enjoy as much as I have!

 

MANGO-BANANA TROPICAL MINI LOAFS

Ingredients, 5 mini loafs

  • 1 1/2 cups grounds almonds/almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 1 medium mango, peeled and cut into small squares
  • olive oil

Process

  1. Preheat oven to 180C (350F). Grease the mini loaf pans with some olive oil or grease of choice.
  2. Combine all the ingredients, except the mango, and with a hand mixer beat until fully combined and smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Add the mango and beat again to incorporate.
  3. Pour the mixture into the loaf pans. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before drizzling with icing.

You can also pour into cupcake molds or double the recipe for a cake. For the cake, you’ll have to adjust the baking time.

Coconut-Honey Icing

Ingredients

  • 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1-2 teaspoons raw honey (to taste)
  • dessicated coconut flakes

(For the coconut oil: place a can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight. When you open it, the fatty/oil portion will be on the top, whilst the milk will be below. Scoop out the fat/oil that you need and mix the rest in with the milk.)

In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients, except the flakes, together with a whisk until smooth. Place in the fridge for about 10 minutes for the mixture to set. Then drizzle over the mini loafs/cupcakes and sprinkle with coconut flakes as garnish.

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A bit about Sweet Adventures Blog Hop

This month’s Sweet Adventure’s Blog Hop, SABH, is hosted by Dining With a Stud. For more information on the hop and to join, please visit her page and recipe here. And don’t forget to check out the delicious recipes below from the rest of the bloggers!

 

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