Sweeten your summer with a fruit tart
But the true gourmand cherishes with the magic of peak-season fruit, and summer’s sweetest of sorcerers are berries and stone fruits (such as apricots, nectarines, plums and peaches). Aside from being delicious, they’re bursting with vitamins and phytochemicals. Sweet, tart, juicy, and good for you? Summer fruit is a dream come true!Celebrate these amazing fruits the ultimate summer dessert – the fruit tart. A great fruit tart highlights fresh, or cooked fruit with a crumbly pastry shell and a cool and creamy filling – which can be a rich pastry cream, lemon curd, or a nutty, custard-like frangipane. Choose great fruit, match it with a fabulous filling and you’ve got a spectacular dessert your guest will remember.A perfect balance of taste and texture, fresh fruit tarts are the most dazzling of summer’s desserts. With the finest of summer’s fruit hitting the markets over the next month, why not give one a try? You won’t be disappointed! -Buon Appetito – Salte! Chef Mick Rosacci, Tony’s Meats & Specialty Foods Buttery tart crustA stand mixer makes this recipe a snap, but if you don’t have one, simply cut the butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender. 4 1/2 ounce (1 cup) all-purpose flour1 ounce (1/4 cup) cake flour2 ounce (2/3 cup) confectioner’s sugar, sifted if lumpy3 tbs ground blanched almonds1/2 teaspoons baking powder1/4 teaspoons salt8 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 8 pieces1 large, cold egg, lightly beatenIn the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the flours, sugar, ground almonds, baking powder, and salt. Add the pieces of cold butter and beat with the whisk attachment on low speed until most of the butter is pea-size, about 1 1/2 minutes. The mixture will look crumbly, and the crumbs will vary in size. Add the beaten egg and mix until the dough comes together and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 30 seconds. You should see distinct flecks of butter. Dump onto a floured work surface and gently shape into a 6-inch disk. Wrap in plastic; chill at least 1 hour before rolling.Roll on a floured surface to the size of your tart pan, or for the easiest handling, roll between two floured sheets of parchment paper (adding more flour as needed). Carefully place in a tart shell or shallow pie pan. Cut excess off with kitchen shears or crimp edges as desired. Bake at 350 degrees on a lower rack until firm and browned on the edges, approximately 20 minutes or fill with frangipane and bake. Yield: one large tart shell.Simple Tart Crust1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup sugar 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces and slightly softened at room temperature 1 egg yolk Put the flour in a large bowl. Add the sugar and mix. Using your hands, make a well in the center. Place the butter pieces and egg yolk in the well. Using your fingers, work the butter and egg yolk together until well combined then work the butter-egg mixture into the flour mixture until combined. The dough will be crumbly, but when you squeeze a handful in your hand, it should hold together. Sprinkle into a 10-inch pie or tart pan. Press the dough firmly and evenly onto the bottom of the pan. Make ropes of the dough and press them onto the walls, making sure not to let the crust thicken at the corners. It should make a clean right angle where the sides meet the bottom. Chill the crust at least 30 minutes or up to 3 days covered. Bake at 375 until brown and cool before filling or fill with frangipane and bake. – Gale GandFrangipaneA nutty, custardy filling that’s baked into a pastry, cooled, and then topped with fresh, poached, or brandied fruits. 4 ounce (about 2 cups) sliced almondsscant 2/3 cup sugar2 large eggs4 ounce (8 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature1 1/2 teaspoons dark rum1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract3/4 teaspoons almond extractIn a food processor, pulse the almonds and sugar until they have a cornmeal consistency. Add the remaining ingredients and process until creamy. Scrape into a baked tart shell, keep in mind that the filling will rise, so do not overfill! Dried fruit can be pressed into batter for a chewier texture. Bake at 350 F until the top is golden and springs back, about 20 minutes. Once cool, decorate the top with fruits. Try sliced plums, mangoes, kiwi, carambola, nectarines, and berries; poached apricots, peaches or pears (can be sliced and added to frangipane half way through baking); or brandied fruits. Glaze fruit and sprinkle with sliced and toasted almond. Yields one to two tarts.Poached apricots or peachesEasy to make, these soft, sweet fruits make a particularly nice topping to a frangipane tart. Glaze and sprinkle with sliced and toasted almonds if desired.1 cup sugar 2 cups water 1/4 cup lemon juice 1 lemon, zested 12 ripe, firm apricots, pitted, or 3 peaches, halved and pitted In a medium saucepan, prepare syrup. Bring the sugar, water, lemon juice and zest to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Poach apricots or peaches until tender. (Tip: if you use peaches, remove the skin.) Let them cool in the syrup. Once cool, slice thin with a sharp knife and use to decorate tarts.Lemon curdUse a layer of this as the base for a fresh berry tart, or skip the fruit and serve as a lemon tart. Great served with fresh whipped cream.3 ounce (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature1 cup sugar2 large eggs2 large egg yolks2/3 cup fresh lemon juice1 teaspoons grated lemon zestIn a medium saucepan over low heat, whisk the butter and sugar until well blended. Add eggs and yolks and whisk to blend. Whisk in the lemon juice and zest. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture is smooth, thickened and 170 F, about 15 minutes. Don’t let the mixture boil or it will curdle. Scrape into a medium bowl and press plastic wrap onto the surface to keep a skin from forming. Cool to room temperature and spoon into baked pie shell, decorate top with fresh berries, then glaze and refrigerate. Yields one 9-10 inch tart.Light pastry creamA light classic filling that’s great for lining French-style fruit tarts.3 large egg yolks1/4 cup sugar2 tablespoons All-purpose flour1 cup milk3/4 teaspoons Vanilla extract1/3 cup heavy cream, whipped to firm peaksIn a small bowl, whisk the yolks, sugar and flour until smooth. Heat the milk in a small saucepan until simmering. Slowly pour the milk into the yolk mixture, whisking constantly, until well blended. Pour the liquid back into the saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Boil, whisking, until thickened and the floury taste is cooked off, about 2 minutes. Scrape the mixture into a small, clean bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until well chilled or up to two days. Just before using, whisk the vanilla extract into the pastry cream until blended and smooth, and then fold in the whipped cream.Spoon pastry cream into a baked tart shell and decorate with fresh sliced fruits or berries. Glaze and refrigerate. Serve within one day. For a tart shell that stays crisp longer, brush shell with melted white or milk chocolate before adding pastry cream. Yields one 9-10 inch fruit tart.Tart glazeAdds a jewel-like sheen to fresh fruit tarts.1/2 cup apple jelly2 tablespoons Grand Marnier, Framboise, or waterIn a small saucepan, combine the jelly and liqueur or water. Simmer over low heat until fluid. Cool slightly. With a pastry brush, gently brush the glaze onto the tops of the fruit. Variation: Warm apricot preserves thinned with water and brush over fruit.
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