I do love a good fruit tart. There is just something about a dessert using fresh seasonal fruits. You can find a wide assortment of tarts featuring just a single fruit or a beautiful assortment of fruits and berries. This tart features super sweet strawberries, an amazing vanilla creme custard, and semi-sweet chocolate.
This was my first attempt at making a tart. In the past, I typically bought them from a bakery because I thought they were too difficult to make at home. This recipe is easier than I thought it would be. The key is have a great cream custard filling. I choose to make a Crème Pâtissière from Julia Child's The Joy of Cooking. I figured if I was going to attempt a French dessert, I should start with her classic recipe. The Crème Pâtissière is a filling used in cream puffs and eclairs. Yumm!
I've seen so many great tarts from other cooks lately. They've inspired me to try making a fruit tart for myself. The Untamed Cook made a great tart that she shared during one of our Friday Community Events on our Facebook page. I used a modified version of her crust. I made a healthier crust with white whole wheat flour, instead of all-purpose flour. I hope my tart will inspire you to get in the kitchen and make your own!
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup powdered sugar
3 Tablespoon almond flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 cup cane sugar
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
2 cups whole milk, boiling
1 Tablespoon melted butter
1 1/2 Tablespoon vanilla extract
3 blocks of semi-sweet baking chocolates squares (3 ounces total)
1 gallon strawberries, hulled and sliced
Powdered sugar, optional
Making Your Pastry Shell
- Cream together the butter, eggs, sugar, and almond flour.
- Slowly add the flour just until all is incorporated. Don't over beat.
- Roll dough in plastic wrap, forming a ball. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Heat oven to 375F.
- Place cold dough on floured surface and roll out to 1/8 inch thick. Place in tart pan and press dough into pan. Cut extra dough away from edge. (Tip: It can be easier to roll the dough between two sheets of waxed paper. Remove one sheet and use the remaining sheet to transfer the dough to the tart pan.)
- Place pie weighs or dried beans in the bottom of the tart. This will prevent the dough from rising in the center.
- Bake tart shell for 10-12 minutes or until light brown.
- Remove pie weighs or beans from shell. Reduce temperature to 350F and bake for an additional 8-10 minutes. Tart will be golden brown and dry.
- Cool completely.
Pastry Creme (Crème Pâtissière)
- In a stand mixer, gradually beat sugar into egg yolks and continue beating for 2 to 3 minutes. Mixture will be pale, creamy yellow and thickens enough to form a ribbon when you left the beater up from the bowl.
- Beat in flour
- Beating the yolk mixture, slowly add the boiling milk in a thin stream
- Pour mixture into saucepan and cook over medium high heat. Stir constantly with a wire whisk until mixture comes to a boil.
- Reduce heat to medium low and whisking constantly for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and beat in butter, then stir in vanilla extract.
- If not using custard creme immediately, scrap down the sides and top with a layer of clear plastic wrap. This will prevent a crust from forming on the top.
Assembling the Tart
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler of in the microwave.
- Spread the melted chocolate on the tart bottom.
- Set the chocolate by placing the tart in the refrigerator or freezer.
- Place the creme custard in a pastry bag or cookie press and pipe filling on top of the chocolate.
- Top with sliced strawberries.
My tart didn't need any additional sugar or sweetener. If you want, you can add powdered sugar to the top of the top just before serving. Slice and serve when ready.
I hope this will inspire you to get in the kitchen and bake your own tart. If you try this tart or make your own variation, I'd love to hear about it.