For the Shortbread Pastry Crust
- 1 3/ 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/ 4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cubed
- 1 large egg, yolk and white separated
For the Filling
- 1/ 2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/ 4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/ 4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/ 4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/ 4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs
- 1/ 2 cup almond flour
- 1/ 8 teaspoon kosher salt
For the Whipped Cream
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1/ 2 teaspoon maple extract
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, non-melting (for stencil)
To Make the Crust
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour, then use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour until very small pieces of butter remain. Add the egg yolk and toss with a fork, then use your hands to work the butter and egg yolk (reserve the egg white for later) into the crumbs until evenly distributed, moistened and the mixture starts to come together; when you squeeze a handful of crumbs together in your fist, they should hold together like dough.
Dump the dough crumbs into a 9-inch round tart pan with a removable bottom. Spread the crumbs out then press them firmly and evenly against the bottom and up the sides of the pan all the way up to the top edge. Use a fork to lightly prick or "dock" the crust. Freeze for one hour (or overnight, if you want to prepare it in advance).
Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Use a pastry brush to brush the frozen crust lightly with the reserved egg white. Lay a piece of parchment paper over the crust, and fill with dried beans (or ceramic pie weights), spreading the beans out to fill the paper around the edges. Set the pan on a baking sheet.
Bake the crust for 20 minutes. Carefully, remove the beans and the paper, and bake, uncovered, for an additional 10 minutes until the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350ºF.
To Make the Filling
In a large bowl, whisk together all the filling ingredients. Pour into the hot, par-baked crust. Cover the edges of the tart with a pie shield so they don't get overly brown. Taking care not to slosh the filling, carefully return the tart to the oven. Bake for 30 minutes. The top of the filling will be golden brown, puffed up a bit, and should still have a slight jiggle; as it cools, it will flatten back out and the filling will set up.
Set the tart on a wire rack and cool completely (or overnight) before decorating and/or serving.
To Make the Whipped Cream and Decorate
For the maple whipped cream, use an electric mixer to beat all ingredients until soft peaks form. Note that this is not a "stable" whipped cream, so it will deflate after a few hours, and should be whipped just before serving. Store leftover whipped cream in the refrigerator, and re-whip to serve again.