If you’re a foodie and have ever had to eliminate foods from your diet for a long enough period of time — you’ll get pretty creative in finding a way to baking delicious treats! This Coffee Meringue Tart was so decadent that my family didn’t seem to miss the dairy or gluten. Though I must admit, I forgot to photograph the true “dairy free” tart that I made. I was too excited to serve it — my family and I ate every last piece before I remembered to grab my camera. That seems to be a common problem for me… Anyway, I made another tart and topped this piece with whipped cream for a shoot because I just don’t have time for meringue this morning. I cannot yet eat dairy, but Erwin will gladly scoop it up. If you make this, I beg you to put in the extra effort — the meringue topping is just a few extra steps and SO worth it! Without further ado:
GF/DF Coffee Meringue Tart
1 cup crushed GF shortbread cookies (I used 6 Pamela’s Pecan Shortbread Cookies)
1/2 cup ground almonds
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1/3 cup of melted ghee (or butter works if you’re not following a DF diet)
Coffee Custard Filling:
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp & 1tsp cornstarch
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/4 tsp sea salt
3 large egg yolks (keep the whites, you will use them later for the meringue)
2 tsp hot water
2 tsp fresh & finely ground coffee
2 tsp vanilla extract
7 tbsp granulated suger
3 large egg whites
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Crust: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly coat a 14x9 rectangular dish with cooking spray. Set aside. In a medium bowl, stir together the crushed cookies, ground almonds and the 2 tbsp granulated sugar. Drizzle ghee over the mixture; toss until evenly coated. Spread the mixture in the prepared pan; press evenly into the bottom and up the sides. Bake for 8-10 mins or until edges are golden brown. Cool completely.
Coffee Custard: In a medium heavy saucepan, combine the 1/3 cup granulated sugar and cornstarch. Stir in coconut milk, coconut cream and 1/3 tsp of sea salt. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 mins more. Remove from heat. Gradually stir in the egg yolks and bring to a gentle boil before reducing heat. Cook and stir for 2 mins more. Remove from heat.
Coffee Custard: In a small cup, stir together the hot water, coffee grounds and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Whisk into the custard filling. Pour the hot filling through a sieve and remove the solids. Then pour the filling into the crust. Cover your tart with plastic wrap & press the wrap into the surface of the filling to remove air. Refrigerate your tart until the filling is firm, at least 3 hrs or up to 1 day ahead.
Meringue Topping: In a 3 qt top of a double boiler, combine the 3 egg whites, 7 tbsp granulated sugar and 1/8 sea salt. Beat with a mixer on low for 30 seconds. Place pan over boiling water (upper pan should never touch water). Cook, beating constantly on low for 3-5 mins continuously scrape bottom and sides of pan to prevent sticking. Beat on high until fluffy and holding soft peaks, then add 1 tsp vanilla and beat again until you spreading consistency.
Meringue Topping: Using a piping bag filled with a star tip, pipe meringue in 1” kisses over your filling. Using a kitchen torch, toast the topping until golden all over OR place the dish in the broiler for 30 seconds. If you prefer the second method, continue to watch your tart because this will burn very easily in the broiler. Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve ASAP. You can keep leftovers in the fridge.
* TIP: Make the meringue topping an hour or two before serving. The egg whites will keep over night in the fridge if you cover them.