Maple Custard Walnut Tart with Apples

another photo because it's just so pretty

Beautiful tart to please both eyes and tastebuds. I love all the individual elements of this dish and love them even more combined. The walnut crust is a great base for any tart, maple custard is delicious (never tried it before), and apples are a wonderful fruit. Arranging the apples into roses really makes this dessert also a piece of art.

My only regret with this recipe is that I didn’t use redder apples to really make the dish visually dynamic. The original recipe definitely delivered a better presentation and used Macoun apples which I didn’t have available at my grocery. I love Fuji apples, so I opted to use Fuji apples even though I knew they might not be red enough. Red Delicious apples were available, but they don’t cook very well and have a more gritty texture. I recommend using Macoun, Jonagold, or Empire apples if you have them available. I used a ceramic knife to slice my apples. A mandolin works great as well, but I can get a thinner slice from a ceramic knife. Microwaving the apples (30-40 seconds) can help make them more pliable to role into roses.

I will admit I’m not sure how well I executed the custard. I’ve only made custard a couple times before, but all part of trial and error. I’m always nervous I’ll over cook it, so consistency was thinner than I would have preferred, but everyone still thought it was tasty. 🙂

One of my longer recipes, but well worth the effort.

Total Time: ~ 3 ½ hours (Prep – 30 minutes | Cook – 30 minutes | Wait – 2 hours | Assembly – 30 minutes)

Ingredients (serves 10):

For the Walnut Crust
2½ cups walnut pieces (no need to buy halves, chopping them up anyway)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 egg white
¼ teaspoon kosher salt

For the Custard
1½ cups milk (I used whole milk)
6 egg yolks
½ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup cornstarch
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Apple Topping
2 apples with red skin, quartered, cored, and thinly sliced (keep in lemon water until ready to use)
Juice of a lemon
Powdered sugar


For the Walnut Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a food processor or chopper, pulse the walnuts until they are finely chopped, and the pieces are about the size of breadcrumbs.
  3. Place the chopped nuts in a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients, tossing together until evenly mixed.
  4. Press the mixture evenly over the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes.

For the Custard

  1. Pour the milk into a small pot and place over medium heat until small bubbles form around the edges.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the maple syrup, cornstarch, and salt.
  3. Slowly pour the hot milk over the egg mixture, while whisking, to warm the eggs.
  4. Place the mixture back into the pot and place over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a bubble and becomes very thick.
  5. Stir in the vanilla and transfer to a heat safe container. Lay plastic wrap over the surface. Chill for 2 hours.

Assemble the Tart

  1. Spread the maple custard in the walnut tart shell.
  2. Warm the apple slices in the microwave until pliable.
  3. Roll a slice of apple into a tight spiral to create the center of a rose and stand it up vertically in the custard. Continue to arrange apple slices in a circularly around the center piece, building a rose pattern.
  4. Dust the top with powdered sugar.


Recipe adapted from Hip Foodie Mom

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Digital guru by day, food junkie by night exploring the world one bite at a time.