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Pecan Torte with Nectarine Ice Cream

These 2 recipes are from Chez Panisse Desserts by Lindsey Remolif Shere. Make the ice cream base early in the week and freeze it the day before, but make the pecan torte the day you are serving it.

Pecan Torte
1 1/2 c. toasted pecans
2 T. flour
6 eggs, room temperature
1/2 c. plus 2 T. sugar
1/2 t. cream of tartar
pinch salt
1/2 t. vanilla

Butter and flour an 11″ springform pan. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Finely chop cooled pecans in food processor (or grate in a nut grater) and toss with the flour. Separate eggs and beat the yolks with half of the sugar until they hold a 1-second ribbon. Clean beater and use separate bowl to beat whites with the cream of tartar and salt until they just hold stiff peaks. Beat in the remaining sugar until they hold stiff peaks again. Drizzle the vanilla over the whites and spread the egg yolk mixture over that. Sprinkle one-fourth of the nut mixture over the yolks and partly fold together. Continue until the last of the nuts have been added and fold them in completely. Spread evenly in the prepared pan and bake about 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool in the pan. Makes 8-10 servings.

Nectarine Ice Cream
1 1/2 lbs. ripe nectarines
1/4 c. water
1 2/3 c. whipping cream
7/8 c. sugar
5 egg yolks
vanilla to taste

Wash and pit the nectarines but do not peel them. Cut them in rough slices into a saucepan, add the water, and cook over low heat until tender. Purée through a food mill or in a blender or food processor. Measure out 1 3/4 c. and set aside to cool.

Heat the cream and sugar together until the sugar is dissolved, stirring occasionally. Whisk the egg yolks just enough to mix them and pour in some of the hot cream mixture, whisking constantly. Return to the pan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture coats the spoon. (Be very careful to keep the heat low and do not overcook or the eggs will curdle.) Strain custard into nectarine purée and stir to mix well. Taste and add vanilla to flavour. Chill mixture very well (I do it overnight). Freeze according to instructions with your ice cream maker. Makes a scant quart.

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