This gluten free mandarin tart has a wonderful citrus flavor from the mandarin curd in contrast to a sweet, nutty walnut crust. This post was sponsored by CA Grown. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Beyond Sweet and Savory possible.
When it comes to summer time dessert, I love no bake or barely baked tarts. Having lived in California for most of my life, I’m a huge supporter of CA farmers and couldn’t be more excited to partner with CA Grown to share this refreshing gluten free mandarin tart for the perfect summer treat. Besides beautiful beaches and farm to table cuisine, California is known for its incredible citrus. Lucky for us, CA Grown citrus such as mandarins, oranges, and lemons are available all year long. We love citrus in both savory and sweet dishes and use this beautifully illustrated seasonal produce guide from California Grown to check which produce is available for pairing with citrus throughout the year.
How to Make the Crust
This simple crust highlights my favorite CA Grown walnuts and Medjool dates. Everything is blended in a food processor and pressed into the tart pan. There is no fussing around with a short crust pastry in the blazing summer heat. The crust comes together in a matter of minutes and gets baked in the oven for 15 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Buckwheat flour is made from gluten free seeds and considered an ancient grain with a naturally toasty, nutty flavor. Dates lend sweetness to this tart while the walnuts add texture. With a low glycemic index, dates make the perfect substitute for sugar in baking and desserts. Walnuts have a rich, nutty flavor and crisp, buttery texture that makes them great for baked goods. California is the largest producer of agricultural crops in the U.S. producing ⅓ of the vegetables and ⅔ of the fruits and nuts in the nation.
How to Make Mandarin Curd
Mandarin oranges are grown mainly in California, where citrus trees thrive in the warm sunshine. They make some of the sweetest fruits in the citrus family. Some of my favorite varieties include clementine, Sumo, Satsuma, and Kishu. They are smaller in size compared to the standard oranges and have bright orange, easy to peel, thin skin. You can use any of these varieties for making the curd.
The curd is made from a mixture of mandarin juice, zest, eggs, sugar, butter, and gelatin sheets. Cook it over low heat to avoid scrambling the eggs. Making curd is a slow process that requires a bit of stirring to get the best texture. Be patient and it will thicken. After straining the curd, pour it directly into the cooled tart shell. Use any leftover curd to serve alongside scones and toast, as a filling for crepes and cakes, or topping for ice cream and yogurt.
How Long Does Tart Need to Set
The mandarin tart needs to stay in the fridge for a minimum of 4 hours for the curd to set. When ready to serve, decorate the mandarin tart with edible flowers and mandarin zest. This tart is best served the day it’s made but can be stored for 72 hours in the fridge.
It’s a joy to bite into this tart and it tastes as delicious as it looks. The curd has a sweet, floral flavor that lends a wonderful contrast to the nutty walnut crust. This beautiful, sunny mandarin tart is the perfect treat to end your alfresco dinner or a summer gathering.
Gluten Free Mandarin Tart
- 9-inch tart pan with removal bottom
- 1 ½ cups walnuts
- 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
- ¼ cup buckwheat flour
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- ¾ cup mandarin juice
- 1 tablespoon mandarin zest
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature and diced
- 2 Platinum strength gelatin sheets
- Extra mandarin zest for garnish
- Edible flowers for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a food processor, combine walnuts, dates, buckwheat flour, coconut oil, and salt. Process until a crumbly mixture forms, scraping down the side as needed.
- Transfer the mixture to a 9-inch tart pan, pressing onto the sides and bottom. Use a measuring cup to help you pack the crust tightly.
- Place the tart pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it cool while you make the curd.
- In a heavy saucepan, combine the eggs, yolks and sugar and whisk to combine well. Stir in the zest and mandarin juice.
- Place the pan over medium-low heat and cook, whisking constantly, until the sugar has melted, about 3 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low and gradually add the butter, 2 pieces at a time, stirring continuously until melted. Continue to cook and stir for 10 minutes or until the mixture is thickened and coats the back of a spoon.
- While the curd is cooking, put the gelatin sheets in a bowl of cold water and leave for 5 minutes to soften or "bloom."
- Once the gelatin is softened, squeeze out the excess water and whisk the gelatin into the curd until completely dissolved.
- Immediately remove the pan from the heat and strain the curd through a mesh sieve, pressing on the sauce with a rubber spatula.
- Spoon the curd into the cooled tart shell. Put the tart in the fridge for 4 hours to set.
- Transfer any remaining mandarin curd to a tight lidded container and refrigerate up to a week.
- When ready to serve, remove the tart from the fridge. Garnish with edible flowers and mandarin zests if desired.