Raw nectarine and cardamom cream tart

Raw nectarine and cardamom cream tart

If I had to pick a favorite stone fruit, nectarines would be it. All summer long, their perfect displays crowded the entrances of grocery stores and begged to be bought by the dozen, each time we walked through the doors. Surprisingly enough, my favorite nectarines didn’t come from the farmer’s market or a little wagon off of County Line Road, but a specialty grocer located just south of downtown. They had them on mega sale for an entire week, and each day I couldn’t resist going in and buying them by the armful. I’d ask the sales clerk to leave the ripest of the bunch unbagged, and I’d wander out the back of the store, stopping to rinse it before I left.
Ask anyone and they’ll tell you the proper way to eat stone fruit is to halve it, pit it, (slice it if you’re fancy) then chow down. But I don’t have time for that. I’d bite through the nectarine’s smooth skin and juice would run down the sides of my mouth, past my wrist and all the way to my elbow. I’d lick it off because you just don’t let something that good go to waste. Often times I’d think about how silly it is that nectarines tend to get overlooked for their peachy counterparts. But if I’m going to be completely honest, I don’t like to fuss with peaches. Sure, they’re delicious – and no, I’m not crazy – but the fuzzy skin is too off putting for me to enjoy them on the fly. (Thom is shaking his head right now.) Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a good peach from time to time – but if nectarines are anywhere in sight, I’m going to pass on the peaches.

Raw nectarine and cardamom cream tart
Raw nectarine and cardamom cream tart

How I managed to save enough nectarines for this tart is beyond me. But I did, and that’s all that matters. This recipe was originally supposed to be a nectarine frangipane tart, until I realized how much I do not like nectarines and frangipane, together. So instead I made a raw tart (the frangipane recipe will come later this year), and I have to say it’s one of the tastiest raw desserts I’ve ever made. The cardamom cream pairs perfectly with the juicy nectarines and walnut crust. And did I mention it’s completely acceptable to eat any time of day? I enjoyed it for breakfast every morning until it was gone.


1  cup raw almonds
1/2 cup raw cashews
1 1/2 cups raw walnuts
12-14 medjool dates, pitted and divided
1/2 cup raw nut milk (or water)
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
Pinch of fine sea salt
2-3 nectarines, halved, pitted and sliced

Place the cashews and almonds in a small bowl; cover with water and let soak for 6 hours, or overnight. While the nuts are soaking, prepare the crust by adding the walnuts to the container of a food processor fitted with the S blade. Blend walnuts into a fine meal then add 8-10 dates and blend just until combined; about 30-45 seconds. Pinch the dough with your fingers – if it sticks together, you’re good to go; if not, add additional dates. Press the dough into an 8-10″ tart pan lined with parchment paper. Cover with plastic and freeze until ready to use.
Once the nuts have soaked, discard the soaking water and add them to the container of a high speed blender, such as a Vitamix. Add the 4 remaining dates, nut milk, vanilla bean, cardamom and sea salt, and blend until smooth; about 45-60 seconds. Transfer the nut cream to a small, air tight container and and refrigerate until ready to use. Will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week. 
To assemble the tart, fill the tart crust with the nut cream and top with nectarines. For the arrangement above, line the nectarine slices around the outer edge of the tart, then work your way in. Tart will keep in the freezer for weeks, but be sure to let it thaw for 20 minutes prior to serving. If you do plan on freezing it, I recommend adding the nectarine slices just before serving.
Yield: 12 slices

32 thoughts on “Raw nectarine and cardamom cream tart

  1. I've always been a nectarine girl myself! My mom never used to by peaches when we were kids because of the fuzzy skin. Since moving to Colorado, though, I've been converted because of how cheap I can get them at the market. I still cherish a good nectarine from time to time and just bought some the other day. I love that you didn't cook the fruit in this recipe. Raw fruit desserts are where it's at! I say this as I just posted a recipe using grilled peaches… 😉

  2. This looks amazing! I'm loving raw desserts right now since the temperatures haven't been too forgiving for baking and turning on my oven. I'll have to try this one soon 🙂

  3. This is beautiful! It almost looks like flower petals. I think it's time I broke out my under-used tart pan and forced myself to set aside some nectarines for your recipe.

  4. This is so pretty! And I'm with you- peaches are a little too fuzzy for my liking. I'll eat them, but given the choice, I would choose a nectarine any day of the week.

  5. Your nectarine tart looks incredibly beautiful and the combination of nuts, sweet fruit and cardamon sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing the great recipeFionahttp://bighungrygnomes.co.uk

  6. Mmmm, I love both peaches and nectarines but I have to say nectarines are my favorite just because of the fuzz too. I don't mind it too much, but I'd rather do without. Your tart looks fantastic! That cream sound amazing! I'm thinking it would be amazing with plums too(I especially like the blue Italian ones 🙂 )

  7. I just found your blog and just wanted to say how wonderful it is. Your photography is fabulous and the design so simple but eye catching at the same time. Great job and keep doing what you're doing! I will go and jot down a few of these yummy recipes now :)xxsophiehttp://theforgestyle.blogspot.com

  8. If I don't have a high-speed blender should I just strain the mixture through a cheesecloth? And I take it I should just use the seeds of the vanilla bean, eh? ALSO. Would your recommend substituting the walnut/date crust for an almond date crust like in your raw berry tart? Thanks for the fabulous ideas and recipes!

  9. No, you do not strain the mixture – you need it to be thick, almost like the consistency of icing. Just soak the cashews longer (overnight) and blend them the best you can. You could use the almond crust, but I recommend the walnut version – the flavor pairs perfectly with the cardamom and nectarines.

  10. This looks insanely delicious! I'm a nectarine fan, too. I also agree that it would be acceptable for breakfast. P.S. I love your philosophy about cooking on your "About." I like eating eggs, but not baking with 'em!

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