Did you know that Wisconsin, where I’ve lived and learned to call home these past seven years, leads the country in cranberry production? I’ve never visited a bog–they’re a good drive from where I live–but I gladly purchase Wisconsin fruits when they arrive late in the farmers’ market season.
Beyond the typical Thanksgiving side of homemade cranberry sauce (which makes a killer topping for a Wisconsin aged cheddar sandwich), I’ve baked quick breads, cranberry bars, and tossed berries to my puppy to snack on. I’ve never baked a cranberry tart, and I was skeptical of Dorie’s recipe for Cranberry Crackle Tart. Nevertheless, I baked it alongside more traditional Thanksgiving pies like pumpkin, pecan, and apple.
The pie is simple to make, especially if you choose Dorie’s press-in sweet tart dough as a base. I made homemade strawberry jam a few days in advance, so on Thanksgiving morning I only needed to make the meringue and bake the creation. Cutting corners, I set my covered bowl of egg whites in a bowl of hot water. They were still less than room temperature and took forever to set up into the desired soft-peak stage.
The tart was a beautiful addition to our dessert buffet, and was the sleeper hit of the holiday. At least two family members asked for the recipe, and many commented on the perfect interplay of sweet, buttery crust, with tart berries, subtle sweetness from the jam, and a chewy meringue cap. What a delight! And a reminder to never doubt the wisdom of Dorie.