Fresh berries accented with a delicate coconut whipped cream make this Sweet Laurel pie perfect for warm summer nights -- or, in California, any time of the year. This segment aired on KTLA's California Cooking: Episode 4.
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SUMMER STRAWBERRY TART
MAKES ONE 9-INCH TART
2 tablespoons coconut oil, solid, plus more for greasing the pan
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons almond flour
Himalayan pink salt
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 large egg
2 cups Coconut Whipped Cream (page 30)
4 cups strawberries, mix of whole, halved, and sliced
How to make:
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 9-inch tart pan with coconut oil.
2. In a food processor fitted with the chopping blade, pulse the flour and salt until combined. Add the coconut oil, maple syrup, and egg and blend until the mixture forms a ball. Lightly press the dough into the tart pan and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until light golden brown.
3. Remove the crust from the oven and allow to cool completely. Fill the crust with coconut whipped cream and top with strawberries. Slice and serve. This is best the same day it is made, but the crust can be made up to a week ahead of time and stored, well wrapped, in the fridge.
COCONUT WHIPPED CREAM
First, be sure your coconut milk is left untouched in the coldest part of your fridge (but above 40°F to avoid freezing) at least overnight. (As long as possible is even better. Right after we come home from the market, the can of coconut milk goes straight into the fridge and lives there until we need to use it.) This gives the thick, white cream a chance to rise to the top and settle, making it easy to separate the cream from the clear, liquid coconut water.
Second, whip still-solid coconut cream until completely smooth, but no further. This sounds counter intuitive, but if you overwhip the coconut cream, it will soften and become liquid.
Once it's whipped to soft or stiff peaks, you can use it as is, or pop it in the fridge overnight for a super-stable cream to fill cakes.
Two 13.5-ounce cans full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
How to make:
1. Remove the solid coconut cream that has risen to the top of the can, and spoon it into a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat the coconut cream on high speed until it begins to thicken and peaks form. The remaining coconut water can be added, a teaspoon at a time, if the whipped cream is too thick. Otherwise, discard it.
2. Using a rubber spatula, slowly fold in the maple syrup and vanilla. Transfer the whipped cream to a metal or glass bowl, cover, and refrigerate until ready to use.
NOTES: For filling cakes, we like to chill the coconut whipped cream in the fridge overnight, covered. This will stiffen the cream and make it stronger for holding layers of cake together. However, it becomes more difficult to style the cream on top of the cake, so we tend to do this only for the filling between cake layers.
The brand of coconut milk you purchase is not the only thing that can affect the final outcome. If coconut milk has accidentally been frozen or overheated, it can struggle to separate properly. For this reason, we recommend your not ordering coconut milk online, but buying it from a store familiar with storing the product properly, like Whole Foods.
Reprinted from Sweet Laurel: Recipes for Whole Food, Grain-Free Desserts. Copyright © 2018 by Laurel Gallucci and Claire Thomas. Photography by Claire Thomas. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.