I’ve been wanting to experiment with an oat-based pie crust for a long time. I’ve found that oat flour tends to work pretty well in baked goods (like these crispy chocolate chip cookies) so couldn’t find a reason why it wouldn’t work for a pie crust. Making the oat crust was so exciting for me – it just proves to the world that every dessert doesn’t have to be made with white flour (maida). A tart crust like in this recipe can work just as well with a larger proportion of oats: a whole grain that is proven to reduce cholesterol and keep you full for longer. And so, I present this walnut caramel tart with oat crust – sticky salted caramel-enrobed walnuts in a buttery, crumbly crust – perfect when served warm and paired with a scoop or two of vanilla ice cream and maybe a shot of espresso too.
The tart base has a nutty oat flavor that is further enhanced by some good old salted Amul butter! This walnut caramel tart with oat crust was what I came up with, but you can use the base for anything like a chocolate tart or fruit tart, or even a quiche. I can see the oat tart crust going really well with strawberries and whipped cream but I’ll have to wait until at least November to be able to experiment with them. Also, this recipe is absolutely egg-free if you are cooking for someone who avoids eggs.
For the salted caramel, I modified Sally’s Baking Addiction’s recipe slightly – it’s foolproof! For a full tutorial with pictures and more, visit her inspiring website. She is one of my favorite bloggers.
- ~100g walnuts
- 80g oats
- 30g chilled butter, cut into pieces
- 30g all-purpose flour
- ~12 tsp cold water
- 130g sugar
- 60g butter, at room temperature and cut into pieces (I use Amul)
- 90ml heavy cream
- Pulse the oats in a mixer or grinder until they resemble a fine powdery flour.
- Add in the all-purpose flour, chilled butter and 5-6 tsp of water and process.
- Test the dough for elasticity by gently pressing it. If necessary, add more water, one tsp at a time for the dough to come together.
- At this stage you can chill the dough for later use or roll out the dough using a rolling pin.
- Press the dough into your greased pie dish or a shallow plate.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 160C or until browned.
- Heat the sugar in a heavy-bottomed pan on medium heat. Avoid using a shallow pan.
- Stir continually using a spatula until the sugar melts down completely into a liquid. Avoid burning the sugar by turning down the heat if necessary. Do not use a metal spoon as it causes uneven temperature distribution.
- Once the sugar has melted, add in the butter and stir till it is fully incorporated. The mixture will bubble at this stage.
- Continue to stir the mixture while slowly adding in the cream. The mixture will bubble once again.
- Stir for a minute or two more while the mixture boils.
- Remove from heat and allow the caramel sauce to cool before using.
- Toss the walnuts in the cooled caramel sauce.
- Pour the caramel coated walnuts and extra caramel sauce into the baked tart crust.
- Bake in the oven for 5-8 minutes at 200C.
- Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Makes two 7 inch tarts.