Friday, May 07, 2010

Strawberry tart

Finally I made my strawberry tart. It may not be the best looking strawberry tart but the taste was super delicious! Reminds me of Delifrance's fruit tart in Singapore. The sweet pastry crust was fantastic. Next time, I am making this again and use melted chocolate over the base..

If time does not permit to bake one, buy one at the supermarket. Once the pastry shell has been baked and cooled, it is a good idea to seal the crust by spreading a thin layer of apricot glaze or melted chocolate over its base to prevent the crust from getting soggy. There different types of fillings you can use, like Lemon curd or cream cheese filling. For this one, I use the traditional pastry cream.I didnt have any fluted tart pan so I used Pyrex's 8" pie dish. 

Strawberry Tart 
(adapted from Summer Berry Tart, Desserts & After Dinner Treats Step-by-Step book)

1 cup plain flour
90g butter
2 tbsp icing sugar
1-2 tbsp water 

To make crust: Preheat oven to moderate 180C/350F. Process flour, butter and icing sugar in food processor, using pulse action, for 15 seconds or until fine and crumbly. Add almost all the water, process 20 seconds or until mixture comes together; add more water if necessary. (It was quite hot here so I placed the pastry in the refrigerator for about 5-10 minutes before rolling the pastry.) Turn onto lightly floured surface, press together until smooth. Roll pastry to fit 20cm round fluted flan tin. Line tin with pastry, trim edges; refrigerate 20 minutes. Cut a sheet of greaseproof paper to cover pastry-lined tin. Spread layer of dried beans or rice evenly over paper. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven, discard paper and rice. Return to oven for 15 minutes, or until lightly golden.

3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons cornflour
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

To make filling: Place egg yolks, sugar and cornflour in bowl, whisk until pale. Heat milk in small pan until almost boiling, remove from heat. Add milk gradually to egg mixture, beating constantly. Strain into pan. Stir constantly, over low heat 3 minutes or until it boils and thickens. Remove from heat, add essence. Transfer to bowl, cover with plastic wrap; cool. 

Clear glaze
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water or fruit juice (clear apple juice)
1 tbsp corn starch or potato starch
1 tbsp corn syrup

To make glaze: Bring sugar to boil with half of the water or fruit juice. Dissolve cornstarch in the other mixture cook. Stirring until mixture thickens and clear. Stir in corn syrup. Bring to boil then remove from heat. Cool before brushing over top of fruit.

To assemble tart: To remove the tart from the fluted sides of the pan, place your hand under the pan, touching only the removable bottom not the sides. Gently push the tart straight up, away from the sides. The fluted tart ring will fall away and slide down. Spread a thin layer or apricot glaze or melted chocolate over the bottom and sides. Spread filling in cooled pastry shell. Decorate the tart,  you'll need 2-3 cups of mixed fruits (berries, sliced kiwi, plums, bananas, pineapple or melon). Arranging the fruit on the tart can be done either randomly or in concentric overlapping circles, starting at the  outside edge. Try to cover all the pastry cream with fruits so that no pastry cream is showing through. Brush gel over fruit with a pastry brush.

This fruit tart is best eaten the same day as it is assembled. Cover and refrigerate any leftovers.

Here is another picture of my strawberry tart.

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