Well, it’s over—and all that’s left are the leftovers, the memories, the extra poundage, and the recipes.
This dessert was one of the stars of yesterday’s meal at my family’s celebration:
Recipe: Cranberry Tart
Adapted from “Dolce Italiano: Desserts From the Babbo Kitchen,” by Gina DePalma (W. W. Norton, 2007)
Time: 2 hours plus 1 hour’s chilling
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup instant or fine polenta
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
Freshly grated zest of 1 lemon
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced
1 large egg plus 3 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup light corn syrup
3 cups (12-ounce bag) fresh cranberries, picked over
1/2 cup heavy cream
Confectioners’ sugar, optional.
1. Place 1 1/4 cups flour, polenta, 1 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and lemon zest in a food processor and process to blend. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand. In a small bowl, beat whole egg with oil and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Uncover processor, pour in liquid ingredients and pulse until a ball of dough forms. This may take 20 or more quick pulses. If necessary, sprinkle in a little water if mixture does not come together. Form dough into a disk and wrap in plastic. Chill at least 1 hour.
2. In a 3-quart saucepan, melt remaining sugar over low heat. Stir in syrup and bring to a boil. Add cranberries and cook, stirring, about 2 minutes, until they begin to release juice. Remove to a bowl and allow to cool about 20 minutes.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough to an 12-inch circle and fit into a 10-inch loose-bottom tart pan. If dough tears, it can easily be pressed together.
4. In a bowl, whisk together cream and 2 tablespoons flour. Whisk in three egg yolks, remaining vanilla and a pinch of salt. Pour over cranberries and fold together. Pour into tart shell, place pan on a baking sheet and bake about 40 minutes, until filling bubbles but is not yet firm, and pastry browns. Cool in pan before removing sides; if desired, dust with confectioners’ sugar.
Yield: 10 to 12 servings.
And for those of you who asked: no, the photo I posted yesterday of a Thanksgiving meal was not of mine, it was just a stock photo. But here’s a photo of our meal yesterday (none of which I cooked). It featured, among other things: a regular and a wild turkey (the latter shot by my brother after several years of hot pursuit); two kinds of stuffing; brussel sprouts with bacon; braised fennel with Parmesen; roast cauliflower with mustard-lemon sauce; braised chard with almonds and raisins; mashed potatoes with celery root and wild mushrooms; beet salad; sauerkraut with white wine; cranberry chutney with walnuts, raisins, and apples; gravy; sweet potatoes with brown sugar and lemon; salad with radishes, blue cheese, and pomegranate seeds; blueberry pie, apple pie, pumpkin pie, tiramisu—and, of course, the above cranberry tart.