Strawberry time is a beautiful time. We normally just eat the strawberries like they are or on top of some ice cream. But today I wanted to use them for a fruit tart.
It's a recipe that can be used for just any kind of fruit topping. But when the strawberries are abundant there's no better way to decorate the tart than with the bright red berries.
My dad is usually the one making these kinds of tarts here at home. He uses puff pastry in his but as I am not a big fan of puff pastry, I decided to go on a different route and used a shortbread crust. Crunchy, sweet and nicely shaped to hold the vanilla cream and the fruit.
For the filling, I used pastry cream. You can also use plain vanilla pudding (freshly made), and that will make it less heavy on the stomach (as it will not contain the eggs). The pastry cream is just a touch more luxurious and therefore our way to go. To decorate you can use strawberry jam to get that shiny layer on top but this is not obligatory in any way. You can also put on some whipped cream or use some powdered sugar to sprinkle on top of the tart.
Ingredients for the crust:
- 85 grams sugar
- 155 grams plain flour
- 1 egg yolk
- 115 grams butter
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- (optional) vanilla extract
Ingredients for the pastry cream:
- 1/2 l milk
- 2 eggs
- 50 grams of instant vanilla pudding powder
- 4 tablespoons of sugar
Ingredients to decorate:
- 200-250 grams fresh strawberries
- (optional) 3-4 tablespoons strawberry jam
First make the crust. Mix the dry ingredients and then add all the other ingredients. By hand or with an electric mixer, combine everything until the dough comes together in a big ball. Put the dough in a mall bowl and put away in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 190°C.
Butter and flour a tart pan (I used a silicone one of about 28 cm in diameter so I didn't need to grease it at all - easy!).
Take the dough out of the fridge and roll out. Put the dough in the pan and press well so that all the sides are evenly covered. I pressed the extra dough in with the rest but you can also make a few cookies with it.
Put it in the oven for about 30-45 minutes but check regularly. When the dough is golden brown and feels firm to the touch, it's ready. When ready, take out of the oven and let cool.
In the meanwhile, make the pastry cream:
Beat the eggs, the vanilla pudding powder and the sugar with an electric mixer until frothy and slightly whitish-yellow.
Heat the milk until just boiling. Take the pot of milk off the fire. Pour the egg mixture in the milk and mix thoroughly. Then put the pot back on the fire and let cook for a minute so that the cream can cook a little.
Take the pot off the fire and let cool up to room temperature. Regularly stir it to prevent lumps forming or a skin on top.
When the crust had time to cool off, take it out of the pan and you're ready to decorate:
Spread the cream in the crust. Slice the strawberries and cover the cream with the berries all over.
Heat the strawberry jam slightly until it's pourable and brush the tart all over the top with the jam to obtain a shiny layer on top.