Archive for: fruit tart
You can always bake berries into a cobbler or pie, but when you have a basket of ripe berries, sometimes the best thing that you can do with them is show them off in their natural state. This easy to make Mixed Berry and Mascarpone Tart is a perfect dessert for showcasing berries. It starts with a sweet, almond shortbread tart crust that is filled with a creamy mascarpone filling before being topped with fresh berries. The most time consuming part is making the crust – and that only takes a few minutes. The flavor of the crisp, butter almond shortbread with the cool filling and super sweet, in-season berries can’t be beat.
I use mascarpone cheese in this filling because it has a nice creaminess and a slightly sweet flavor that really sets off the berries very well. Cream cheese could be used as a substitute, but it has a stronger flavor and will be a more dominant element when the tart is served. Feel free to adjust the amount of confectioners’ sugar in the filling to your tastes, adding a little bit extra if you prefer your filling to be a little bit sweeter. I stuck with a simple combination of raspberries and blackberries for my fruit here. They are about the same size, which gives the tart a nice look, and their flavors go very well together. Don’t hesitate to mix up the berry combination with blueberries or boysenberries, too! I think that the tart looks stunning with neat rows of fresh berries, but you can actually use all kinds of fruit as a topping.
The tart recipe is for a 10-inch round tart, but you can see from the photos that it can also be made in tart pans of different sizes. Since this is a no-bake filling, you don’t need to worry about baking times and pan sizes too much with this recipe. Press your tart dough into any shape tart pan – round or rectangular, large or small – and bake the crust until it is just golden (the baking times are very similar to the full size tart, as long as the crusts are a similar thickness), then you’re ready to fill. If you do happen to have a rectangular tart pan, I definitely recommend it as it is easy to decorate and serve in this format.
Chocolate covered strawberries are one of the tastiest treats that you can make with fresh strawberries, but this chocolate and strawberry combination can be used in other types of desserts, as well. This Double Chocolate Strawberry Tart is definitely inspired by the idea of a chocolate covered strawberry – though in this dessert, the strawberries are on top of the chocolate!
The tart starts with a Chocolate Shortbread Tart Crust. This buttery crust is filled with a very simple chocolate cream cheese filling. I love this filling because it is very easy to prepare and has a subtle cheesecake flavor to it that goes well with all kinds of other flavors, including fresh fruit. Melted dark chocolate gives it a good chocolate flavor while still keeping it light and not as heavy as a ganache filling can be. The tart is finished with a flower-like array of thinly sliced, fresh strawberries. You get a perfect mouthful of crisp crust, creamy filling, chocolate and berries in every bite.
I made this dessert as 4 individual tarts for single servings (or sharing), but you can use the shortbread crust recipe to make a 9 or 10-inch tart shell, as well, and you can assemble these ingredients into one larger tart to serve a crowd. The tart is best when served just after you add the berries, as the fresh berries give off too much juice to store the entire tart for a long period of time. You can, however, prepare the tart shells a day or two in advance and store them in an airtight container at room temperature. The day you are ready to serve them, fill the shells with the chocolate cream filling and store the filled crusts in the refrigerator for up to a few hours. Add the strawberries just before serving.
I like this tart served very simply, but to dress it up you can add a dollop of whipped cream to each one. You can also melt some apricot jelly and use it to “glaze” the strawberries for a super-shiny finish, though I think that perfectly ripe strawberries need no embellishment.
Galette is a French term that refers to a variety of flat, round cakes, usually made with a flaky pastry dough of some kind. The term is very broad and can actually encompass a wide variety of different desserts, including a type of buckwheat crepes popular in parts of France and even types of cookies in French Canada. More often than not, despite the fact that it can refer to a number of different baked goods, the term galette typically refers to a free form tart that is made with a flaky pasty crust. These tarts are not molded in tart pans. Instead, filling is placed directly on top of a sheet of rolled out pastry and the edges of that pastry are folded up and around the filling. The tart becomes crisp during baking and the dessert, as a whole, manages to be both rustic and elegant at the same time.
Galettes can be sweet or savory. When you fill the tart with ingredients vegetables, sausage and cheese can turn a sheet of pastry into a beautiful main course. It is more common for galettes to be filled with fruit, chocolate or other sweet elements and served for dessert, though. For a basic galette, you really only need three ingredients: pastry dough, fruit and sugar. Simply roll your pastry out onto a parchment-lined baking sheet (flaky pie pastry will work well) and pile thinly sliced, lightly sweetened fruit in the center of the pastry, leaving a border around the edges. Fold up excess pastry to cover the fruit slightly, then bake until the pastry is brown and crisp. Stone fruits, such as the peaches used in this Easy Peach Galette, make excellent galettes, but so do apples, berries and even grapes.
Grapes are a fruit that most of us simply eat straight out of the bowl, or wait until they turn into raisins and use them in baking. But there is another good use for grapes. They can easily be roasted and become even sweeter and more tender after a short time in the oven. Roasted grapes are delicious on their own or on top of ice cream, or when used in a tart filling, as they are in this Roasted Grape Galette.
Galettes are rustic looking fruit tarts that are easy to make and a great way to showcase fresh fruit. This one starts with a homemade pie crust that is folded up around a generous number of fresh red grapes, and is then baked until the grapes are incredibly sweet and the pastry is crisp and flaky. I toss my grapes in a little bit of cornstarch and a tiny amount of red wine (or grape juice) just to try to catch any juices that might leak out while the grapes are roasting in the oven and keep the inside the galette’s crust.
The key to a great galette is having a very flaky pastry dough to work with. Pie crust is sturdier than puff pastry and has less of a tendency to get soggy, even when you fill it with a very juicy fruit. You can use a storebought crust, but you will definitely have a better result with a good homemade one. You can get some tips here on making your pie dough even flakier. With a good crust, you’ll really get the contrast between crisp, buttery pastry and juicy, sweet filling.
This galette is best served the day it is made, as the juice from the grapes will cause the crust to soften a bit if it is stored overnight. Fortunately, the pie dough can be prepared a day or two in advance and kept in the fridge, so you can assemble the tart shortly before serving. Be careful when you’re rolling out the dough so that you don’t get any tears in the pastry that could let excess grape juice leak into the oven during baking and you get all that flavor in the finished tart.
When summer comes around, I start looking for quick and easy desserts to make. One of my favorite things to put together is a fruit galette. It’s a rustic looking tart made with a pie crust or piece of puff pastry that is rolled out onto a baking sheet, topped with fresh fruit, and baked. The sides of the pie crust are folded up slightly around the fruit, giving the tart its signature rustic appearance (rustic as opposed to the fluted crusts found with tarts baked in a regular tart pan). My favorite thing about this type of tart is that you can use just about any kind of fruit in it – berries, apples, plums, nectarines, pears, grapes, etc. I just use whatever is ripe and/or in season. It is so versatile, that there is no need to rely on frozen fruit as an alternative to fresh. This one happens to be made with fresh peaches (white and yellow-skinned).
I rarely need to use an actual “recipe” for a tart like this one, since there are really only two main ingredients: fruit and a pie crust/puff pastry sheet. Once the tart has been assembled, all you really need to do is put it in the oven and bake until it is golden brown. You can use a homemade pie crust, a storebought pie crust or a sheet of puff pastry. Puff pastry is definitely the most convenient and it keeps for a very long time in the freezer, so I fall back on it a lot for a quick dessert like this one.
The only real caveat is that this type of dessert is definitely best served shortly after it is made. It is delicious when served warm with some vanilla ice cream, and is still good at room temperature up to a few hours later. Beyond that point, the tart will still taste good, but it will lose some of its crispness. Fortunately, there is little prep work to be done to make this galette, so you don’t really need to worry about needing time to make it in advance. That said, you can certainly chop up your fruit and store it in a bowl, in the fridge, until you’re ready to bake.