Blood Orange Tart

I am infatuated with Blood Oranges.
My daughter is looking over my shoulder nodding Yep.

So pretty.

I first fell for them when we were living in Tunisia. Here, they are a bright spot in the bleak days of winter when the rain and overcast skies threaten to linger past their welcome.
Now I sort of hoard them when I see them. I juice them and freeze the juice and the zest. 
No idea what I am going to do with my stash but it makes me happy knowing it is there.

A few weeks ago I offered a "Dessert a Month" at a fundraising auction. My friend Missy bought my offering and we agreed my first dessert would be for Easter. So, I made Blood Orange Bars with Brown Butter Crust

I halved the recipe and made it into a tart.

This rich buttery shortbread crust was filled with a gorgeous Blood Orange Curd. The curd was beautiful in color, very smooth (okay it was luscious,) and showed off that delicious berry-orange flavor the oranges are known for. 

See what I mean

All finished.

Blood Orange Bars with Brown Butter Crust
adapted from White on Rice Couple

A few notes. This recipe is meant to be made in a 9" x 13" or 1/4 sheet pan. I made half of this recipe and used a 4" x 14" tart pan. Even so I had PLENTY of crust and curd leftover and made an additional 12 tarts in a mini muffin tin. I also found my oranges to be on the too sweet side and lacking acid, taste your juice. I added the juice of two lemons to balance the flavor.

2 Cups unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Blood Orange Curd:
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
12 eggs beaten
4 egg yolks beaten
zest of 6 Blood Oranges
2 1/2 cups of Blood Orange juice (taste your juice!)
1 cup unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/2" pieces

Preheat the oven to 350 Grease pan and set aside.

Crust: Put butter in a saucepan to melt over medium low heat. Cook the butter until it begins to smell nutty and toasty and turns amber in color. This is not the time to go check Facebook. You'll burn your butter. I'm sure your mom would have something to say about that.
Once brown, remove the butter from the heat and stir in the sugar. Blend until the sugar is nearly dissolved. In a mixing bowl combine the flour and salt. Stir in the butter mixture until well blended then press into the prepared pan working the dough up the sides of the pan and evenly across the bottom. Neaten up those edges....presentation is important.

Bake the crust for 30 minutes.
Make the curd: Set a medium saucepan filled with water over medium high heat and bring to a gentle boil.
In a mixing bowl that can set over the simmering water, whisk together the cornstarch, sugar, and salt. Add the eggs, zest and juice. Set the bowl over the saucepan, you do not want the water to touch the bottom of your mixing bowl.
Cook the curd stirring frequently until it begins to thicken. Remove the mixing bowl from the simmering water and stir in the butter a few small pieces at a time until it is all incorporated. Strain the curd through a fine mesh strainer.

Pour the curd into the crust as soon as it comes out of the oven. Return the pan to the oven and cook for an additional 15 minutes or until the filling has thickened and looks slightly set.
Cool completely then refrigerate at least 4 hours, but overnight is best.
Serve chilled.

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