This week, I had the wonderful opportunity to not only be introduced to a brand new swimming hole, but to be invited to pick fresh strawberries from a friend’s garden. Both were hidden treasures, to be sure. Normally, I would hull my strawberry haul and pop them into the freezer to add to our morning smoothies, but after thinking about it for all of 5 seconds, I just couldn’t do it. They were too fresh, smelled too good and after all, strawberry season would be over in a flash.
Because my train of thought sometimes takes the more scenic route, one summer memory – teaching at a summer camp – led to another – the balsamic strawberry spinach wraps we would make for the kids – and all of a sudden, I had thought of a recipe fit for the fruit of my labor. The recipe good enough for these strawberries? Gluten Free Strawberry Balsamic Tarts. What seems like an unusual pairing of strawberries and balsamic vinegar is actually a bright, tart treat with just the right amount of mellow sweetness.
I waited until after I was cool from the swim and until the sun was nearly down to fire up the oven, bake the tart cups (from a recipe I normally use for gluten free, vegan shortbread cookies) and roast the strawberries. I love easy summer meals and desserts that require little prep time, use fresh local summer foods and add to our summer days without cutting into summer fun – and these tarts fit the bill. They are quick, simple and don’t even require you to pull out the mixer.
The dough is especially easy to make and to work with. Place cupcake papers in a muffin tin, divide the dough into 12 equal-ish portions and press firmly up the sides of the paper. Bake until golden, add balsamic strawberries or any other seasonal fruit and serve!
- 2 cups almond flour
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 4 cups strawberries (2 pints)
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 3 tbsp sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Prepare a 12 cup muffin tin with muffin papers.
- Add all crust ingredients into a medium sized mixing bowl.
- With your fingers or a fork mix all ingredients thoroughly.
- Make 12 equal sized balls and drop into muffin cups.
- Press the dough firmly on the bottom and up the sides of the cup as far as it will go.
- Bake the cups for 10 to 12 minutes until golden brown.
- Cool tarts for at least 10 minutes.
- Raise oven temperature to 375°F.
- Rinse the strawberries in cool water.
- Slice strawberries & place them in a large bowl.
- Sprinkle them with the sugar.
- Add balsamic vinegar.
- Pour the strawberry mixture into an ovenproof dish.
- Roast for 8 – 10 minutes.
- Roast until the juices are bubbling, but making sure strawberries aren’t mushy.
- Remove the papers from the tarts.
- Spoon roasted strawberries onto tarts, without balsamic liquid.
- Add whipped cream if desired.
- Serve immediately.