I made a recipe story for our fresh fruit tart on Stellar, but wanted to document it on the blog too because, well, when was the last time we posted a recipe? If you recognized the photo of the tarts as one that we had on our calendar, then you are correct. This was for a project that never came to be. Oh, the graveyard of abandoned or unrealized projects…how many times have we dumped our failures into your yard?
But I digress.
Fresh Fruit Tarts
Makes four individual servings
6 ounces cold butter
2 cups flour
5 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 egg yolk
Cut the butter into small pieces. Mix butter, flour, sugar and salt in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment on low speed until butter is almost completely incorporated. Add egg and yolk, mix just until the dough comes together. Divide the dough into four equal pieces. and chill for about 30 minutes before rolling.
Roll each piece of dough between two pieces of parchment paper to 1/8 inch thickness, then press them into four individual tart pans. Chill before baking.
Line the tart shell with parchment paper and fill with uncooked rice or beans. This prevents the shell from bubbling up. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes until it starts to darken around the edges. Remove from the oven, cool for a few minutes, remove the parchment and beans/rice, then return it to the oven to complete baking for about 5-6 minutes. Cool completely while preparing the filling.
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean
½ cup sugar
¼ cup flour
Pour the milk into a small saucepan. Split the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Add both the vanilla bean and seeds to the milk and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, sugar and flour together in a medium bowl. Remove the vanilla bean from the hot milk, then gradually pour the milk over the egg mixture while whisking. Return the mixture to the saucepan, turn the heat to low, and cook while stirring until thick.
Remove from the heat and push the warm pastry cream through a fine-meshed strainer into a bowl. Immediately spoon the warm pastry cream into the baked and cooled tart shells filling each only slightly more than halfway to allow room for fresh fruit.
Just after the tarts have been filled with pastry cream, arrange your fruit using whatever is in season and at the peak of ripeness. We used plums, currants, nectarines and blueberries on our tarts, but any fruit does well paired with the pastry cream. Make sure to refrigerate before eating.