Friday, August 20, 2010

my fresh berry birthday tart.

What a lucky girl I am.

We headed down to Medford earlier this month to attend Andy's 10 year high school reunion (!) and do a little birthday celebrating.

My friend Jess is a pastry chef, as I have mentioned before, and she made me a fantastic fresh berry tart. I don't usually say this, but O.M.G.

Who gets from-scratch cupcakes and a berry tart all in one week? Again, I'm lucky.

We also went wine tasting, and visited a new tasting room out in the Applegate that was seriously amazing. It was probably one of the best places I've been to, as far as atmosphere and friendliness of the staff. We will definitely be recommending Fiasco to our friends and visiting again when we go back down. Soon.

Try making this tart with all the late-summer berry bounty!

Fresh Mixed Berry Tart

Serves 8.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma


1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
8 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 egg yok, beaten with 2 Tbsp. heavy cream

Vanilla Pastry Cream:

3 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 egg yolks
2/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

4 cups mixed berries (she used blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries)
powdered sugar for dusting (optional)


Position rack in lower oven, preheat to 425 F.

In a food processor or bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt and pulse or combine with fork/pastry blender to mix. It should resemble a coarse meal. Add yolk mixture until dough holds together when squeezed. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead a few times into a ball. Shape into 5" disk, wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 mins.

While the dough is chilling, make pastry cream: Beat sugar, flour, cornstarch and egg yolks on medium speed with a mixer for 2-3 mins until thick.

Combine milk and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to simmer. While stirring, add half of the milk into the just-blended sugar mixture until combined. Then, pour the sugar mixture back into the pan with the remainder of the milk and increase to medium-low heat. Cook, while whisking constantly, until mixture thickens and bubbles, 1-2 mins. Scrape sides and corners while whisking to prevent scorching.

Pour pastry cream into clean bowl and cover surface with parchment paper. Let cook to room temp, then refrigerate for 1 hour.

On a floured surface, roll out dough into 11-inch round. Transfer into 9-inch tart dish and trim edges. Line pastry with parchment paper, fill with pie weights, rice or beans and bake for 5 minutes. Reduce the oven temp to 350. Remove pie weights and paper, and poke holes in bottom of crust. Bake until crust is golden, 15-20 minutes more. Cool for 1 hour.

To serve, spoon pastry cream into crust and arrange berries on top to your liking. Dust with powdered sugar if desired.

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