Sunday, September 14, 2008

Fresh Strawberry Tart

I had some friends coming over Saturday night and I decided that I'll do a strawberry tart for dessert. It'll go nicely with coffee and furthermore I think it's such an elegant dessert to be served after dinner. For this tart I purposely picked the brightest red of all the strawberry punnets that was displayed over the fruit counter. The redness of the strawberries will throw some colour to the pale yellow of the vanilla bean pastry cream.

I simply love this pastry cream which is from Dorie Greenspan's recipe book. It's so simple and versatile as it can be used as a filling for most tarts, eclairs and danish pastries.

Fresh Strawberry Tart

Sweet Pastry Dough
Recipe from Dorie Greenspan’s book “Baking: From My Home to Yours”

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 tsp salt
113 g unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
1 large egg yolk

Method:

1) Preheat the oven to 375 F (190C) degrees.

2) Pulse flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Add butter and pulse until it resembles a coarse meal. Stir in the yolk and pulse again until the dough forms clumps and curds.

3) Turn the dough out onto a work surface and very lightly and sparingly, knead just to incorporate dry ingredients.

4) Butter a 9-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Press the dough evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Freeze crust at least 30 minutes before baking.

5) Bake blind for 25 minutes, remove the weight and bake for another 10 minutes. Let cool.

Pastry Cream
Recipe from Dorie Greenspan’s book “Baking: From My Home to Yours”

Ingredients:

2 cups whole milk
6 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch, sifted
1 vanilla bean pod, scrap out the seeds
50 g unsalted butter, cut into bits at room temperature

Method:

1) Bring the milk and vanilla pod seeds to a boil in a small saucepan.

2) In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the yolks together with the sugar and cornstarch until thick and well blended. Still whisking, drizzle in about 1/4 cup of the hot milk. Whisking all the while, slowly pour in the remainder of the milk.

3) Put the pan over medium heat and, whisking vigorously, contstantly and thoroughly bring the mixture to a boil. Keep at a boil, still whisking, for 1 to 2 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat.

4) Let sit for 5 minutes, then whisk in the bits of butter, stirring until they are fully incorporated and the pastry cream is smooth and silky.

5) Scrape the cream into a bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the cream to create an airtight seal and refrigerate until cold or, if you want to cool it quickly put the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice cubes and cold water and stir the pastry cream occasionally until it is thoroughly chilled, about 20minutes.

6) The pastry cream can be kept, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.




To Assemble the Tart:

1) Pour the pastry cream into the pie shell and smoothen out.

2) Remove the stems from whole strawberries and arrange in circles, sticking the cut side down into the pastry cream.

3) Glaze the strawberries with some strawberry jam diluted with a bit of warm water.

4) Optional: Shave some chocolate curls on top of the tart and serve.

3 comments:

Dani said...

i bet this was a crowd pleaser!

Lisa Michelle said...

Not only beautiful, but scrumptious looking. Must try this!

Divya said...

Hey that looks lovely. You made the right decision by picking the brightest berries. They do set off against the yellow cream. So good!
Lovely blog.

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