I know how you are fond of introducing and then discontinuing really great products (puff pastry wrapped brie with no fruit, nuts or other nonsense, curry in phyllo are just 2 which come to mind), but I am warning you: if you discontinue the gluten-free gingersnaps, I'm going to start carrying out some of those threats I've mentioned when you constantly run out of my favorite product, which alas, has to go unmentioned because it is already popular enough.
I've mentioned before that my father has Celiac (double click for more info) disease, which is an intolerance to wheat gluten. A lot of people have scoffed at this notion - especially restaurant workers who have to deal with guests who can't have gluten - but it is actually a serious condition, mainly because it inhibits one's ability to absorb vitamins and minerals. At any rate, whenever I have my parents over for dinner, I try to think up new things to make for dad, especially for dessert. Now, I make a pretty mean flourless chocolate cake, but when I spied the gluten-free gingersnaps at Trader Joe's last week, I had a stroke of brilliance.
Once upon a time, I was a baker at a (then) Top 10 restaurant in Columbus. I have made this lemon gingersnap tart more times than I can begin to count. I made so many of these tarts that I actually kind of started to hate them a little bit. But our guests loved them, so I had to keep making them. Fortunately, years have passed, and I can face them again. This tart is so incredibly easy that I always feel a little guilty about accepting complements on it. But not too guilty. You don't have to use gluten free gingersnaps, of course, but for anyone who can't have gluten, this tart tastes just as tasty as its wheaty counterpart, so it will make them very happy (it made Dad very happy, and so did the leftover gingersnaps).
Gluten Free Lemon Gingersnap Tart - serves 8
recipe adapted from David Tetzloff
For the Crust
1 8 ounce package Trader Joe's gluten free gingersnaps
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1/3 - 1/2 cup melted butter
Preheat oven to 350. Combine the sugar, salt and gingersnaps in the bowl of a food processor and blitz to crumbs. Pour the crumbs into a bowl and gradually add the butter until you have the consistency of wet sand. Lightly spray a 9 inch tart pan (with removable bottom) with cooking spray, place the pan on a half sheet pan and press the crumb mixture into the pan. I like to use a wide, flat glass to ensure even crumb distribution. Place the sheet tray in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, rotating after 10 minutes. Cook until the crust looks dry and has a smooth surface. Allow to cool, place it in a fridge if you're in a hurry.
For the Tart Filling
1 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk (fat free even works)
3/4 cup lemon juice, or to taste
zest and juice of one lemon, in addition (optional)
7 large egg yolks
Combine the lemon juices and zest in a blender and blend to combine, then strain through a fine mesh strainer. This step is optional, but I think it helps boost the tartness. Combine the sweetened condensed milk with the lemon juice, tasting to be sure its tart enough, adding a little more lemon juice if necessary. Add the egg yolks and whisk to combine thoroughly. The consistency should be a little bit jiggle like pudding. Pour the filling into the cooled shell and bake for 15-20 minutes, rotating after 10. The tart will be set but still a little jiggly - it should jiggle as one versus having just a jiggly center. Cool to room temperature and then place in fridge for at least 4 hours before serving. I like to serve it with a little whipped cream to balance the lemony tartness.