Grain free Christmas apple minced tart with spiced meringue

February 16, 2018

I have been gluten free for about five or six Christmases now, and each year I have accepted the status quo: that I will inevitably watch with envy as my family scarf down minced pies with reckless abandon. This year, however, I’ve made the call not to sit back and take missing out on dessert lightly, and have made my own gluten free minced tart, complete with a festive, spiced meringue twist.

This minced tart is best consumed on the day of making, as the syrup from the apples seeps through the pastry after a day or so. It is still delicious thereafter, but it will probably be prudent to have a fork, a napkin, and a dark coloured shirt on. The tart is not only gluten free but also grain free, and a tiny bit friendlier on your fructose intolerant friends, given that I’ve tried to keep the dried fruit to a minimum. Enjoy with reckless abandon.



4 Pink Lady apples, chopped into small pieces
Juice of 3 oranges
1/3 cup dried apricots, chopped
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
2 teaspoons mixed spice
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon ginger



1 ½ cups almond meal
1 cup tapioca flour
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 teaspoon mixed spice
2 tablespoons brown sugar
100g butter
1 egg


2 egg whites
½ cup caster sugar
½ teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. In your food processor, combine the ingredients for the pastry, and pulse until they form a ball. If the mixture is particularly sticky, wrap it in some cling film and refrigerate for about half an hour, to firm it up. Once it’s firmed up, press the dough into a greased fluted tart tin, and poke lots of fork holes in the bottom, to allow the air to escape while it cooks. Place in the oven for 10 minutes.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine all the ingredients for the tart filling, and turn to a medium heat. Allow to cook for around 15-20 minutes, stirring intermittently, until the apple pieces are soft and the orange juice liquid has become a syrup. Remove from the heat.
  3. Once the pastry has cooked, fill the tart with the apple mixture, and return to the oven for 10-20 minutes.
  4. While the tart is cooking, beat the egg whites in a clean bowl until stiff peaks form. Add the caster sugar, vanilla bean paste and nutmeg, and continue to beat until well combined, glossy and free of any sugar related grit.
  5. Allow the pastry to cool a little, and then gently spread the meringue atop the tart. I used a blow torch to gently cook the top of my meringue, but if you don’t have one, you can return the tart to the oven for 10-15 minutes, on a lowered heat of 160 degrees Celsius. Serve while warm.

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