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Nusstorte (Swiss Nut Tart)

Prep Time:

15 Minutes

Cook Time:

1h15 minutes

Serves:

10-12 Servings

About the Recipe

I am so excited to share one of my all-time favorite Swiss desserts with you - Nusstorte. Nusstorte, which translates to "nut tart" in English, is a traditional pastry from Switzerland that is characterized by its rich and buttery crust and its flavorful filling made from a combination of nuts, honey, and caramel.

Having immigrated to Canada when I was young, but being Swiss born and raised in a Swiss household meant that I was very much still connected to Switzerland while being surrounded by North American ways. One of the ways I was still very much connected to Switzerland was through food. My mother was, and still is, a fantastic cook (where my love of cooking comes from) and would make us amazing home cooked meals every day. Many of them Swiss recipes. But some Swiss foods were extra special treats. Usually brought or sent to us from Switzerland through friends and family. One of those being the Nusstorte.
Once a year a family acquaintance would send a Nusstorte to my parents by mail.
It was so good. I could have eaten the entire thing to myself. It was not very big hence, why I was only ever allowed one piece. That is when I knew I would have to find a way to make it myself.

What I love most about Nusstorte is its unique combination of textures and flavors. The crust is crispy and crumbly, while the filling is sticky and chewy with a subtle crunch from the nuts. The honey and caramel add a lovely sweetness that balances out the nutty flavors perfectly.

No wonder Nusstorte is a beloved dessert in Switzerland and is often enjoyed during the holiday season or on special occasions. It's a true comfort food that brings people together, and I hope that by sharing this recipe with you, you too can experience the joy of this delicious Swiss treat.
So, let's get started!

Ingredients

Dough:

3 cups Pastry Flour

3/4 cup Unsalted Butter (softened)

1/2 cup Granulated Sugar

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1 teaspoon Maple Syrup

2 Eggs


Filling:

3 cups Mixed Nuts (almonds, hazel nuts, pecans)

1/2 cup Granulated Sugar

1 tablespoon Water

1/2 cup Unsalted Butter

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1/2 cup Maple Syrup

1/2 cup Honey


Egg Wash:

1 Egg

1 tablespoon Water

1/2 teaspoon Sugar

1/4 teaspoon Salt


Preparation



The making of this wonderful pie requires a few key steps, but believe me, they are all very worth the time.

Start by mixing together the butter, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl. Mix until you have a smooth creamy mixture. Add in the eggs and maple syrup. When all is well blended, kneed in the pastry flour one cup at a time. You can use All-Purpose flour if this is all you have, I just find the pastry flour makes the crust extra delicate and flaky.

I like to use my hands to knead the dough. I find that there is something truly special about kneading dough by hand. While many people might prefer the convenience and speed of using a stand mixer, I believe that there are a number of benefits to the old-fashioned approach of using your own two hands to work the dough.

First and foremost, kneading dough by hand allows you to really connect with the process of dough-making. There's a certain satisfaction that comes from feeling the dough beneath your fingers, gradually transforming from a sticky, shapeless mass into a smooth, elastic ball.

In addition to being a satisfying experience, kneading dough by hand can also help you develop a deeper understanding of the dough itself. By feeling the texture of the dough as you work it, you can learn to recognize the right consistency and adjust your recipe accordingly. This level of intuition can be harder to achieve when relying on a machine to do the work for you.

Once your dough is made. Place the dough in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour. When your dough has almost completely chilled, you can prepare the pie filling.

Heat your oven to 300F.

Spread your nuts onto a baking sheet. Traditionally, this pie is made using walnuts. I personally have a bit of an allergy towards walnuts to I like to use a different mixture for my pie. I use one cup of each of the following: almonds, hazelnuts and pecans. You can keep it traditional or experiment and use whatever nuts you like.



Roast the nuts in the oven for approximately 10 minutes.

Remove the nuts from the oven and let cool until they are cool enough to handle (approximately 10 minutes).

Transfer nuts to a cutting board and roughly chop them. Place nuts into a large mixing bowl.

Next, it is time to prepare the caramel filling.

In a saucepan, heat the sugar and water over medium-high heat. Lightly stir mixture around to help dissolve the sugar crystals. Then once melted, do not stir too often, only give the pan a swirl from time to time letting the mixture caramelize. This is the part that gives the pie it's deep caramel flavor. You want the sugar to become a golden brown.

Once you have achieved this, remove the mixture from the heat and add in your butter. Stir butter into the warm mixture until all the butter has melted. Add in the maple syrup and salt and put it back on the heat for approximately 5 minutes stirring often.



When your golden syrup is ready, pour it over your nut mixture and mix well until all nuts are well coated. Pour in the honey and mix again.

Now that your filling is prepared it is time to roll out your dough.

Remove the dough from the fridge, place on a well floured surface and separate into two pieces. Make one slightly larger than the other as the larger one will be used for the bottom crust and the smaller for the top covering.



Prepare your pie pan by greasing it lightly with butter and dusting it with flour so that the crust does not stick. I suggest using a deep pie dish as you want enough room for the filling. I like using a spring form because it is deep and I find it the easiest to remove the pie afterwards.

Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough so that the larger one is the right size to cover the base and sides of your pie pan. The dough should be approximately 3-4mm thick.

When the bottom of your pie shell is in place scoop the filling in and press it down so that it is nice and compact.



Next roll out the smaller dough ball to create the pies cover.

Pinch the sides together along to top edge. Decorate the top as you like. I like to poke the top with a fork in a few places, just to let steam have a chance to escape while baking.

Heat the oven to 350F. And prepare your egg wash. Mix egg, water, sugar and salt in a small bowl. Use a pastry brush to brush the top of the pie with your egg wash. This will give the pie a nice golden crust.

When your oven is at the right temperature, place your pie inside and bake for 1h-1h15 minutes. You will know when the pie is ready when the crust is golden.



Remove the pie from the oven and let cool on a cooling rack. I like to let the pie cool completely before cutting into it, but if you are in a rush to try it I would say let it cool for a minimum of 30-40 minutes before serving.

I really hope you enjoy this pie as much as I do! Let me know in the comments if you have tried it.




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