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Friday, March 23, 2012

Looking Forward to Strawberry Season


I just received my April issue of Southern Living Magazine, and I'm loving it - lots of inspiration for the upcoming Strawberry season.  I'm lucky to have lots of farm stands here on the east end of Long Island, NY - where I get the just picked fresh strawberries.  They are so juicy and sweet, I wish the season lasted a little longer though. . . 
This issue reminded me of the strawberry tart I made last summer, this recipe does take some time and patience, but it is well worth it!

Strawberry Cream Tart  
Tart Dough
1 stick unsalted butter, room temp
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 cups cake flour, sifted
In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla on medium, scraping down the bowl as needed with a spatula, until smooth.  Add the egg yolk and blend until smooth about 1 minute.  Add the flour, mixing on low just until blended.  The dough will be crumbly, press dough into a disk and wrap in saran wrap refrigerating for 1/2 hour before rolling out.
Prepare Pastry Cream
1/4 cup cornstartch
3/4 cup sugar 
2 cups whole milk 
4 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
pinch of salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
Combine the cornstarch with 1/4 cup of the sugar in a mixing bowl, stir in 1/2 cup of the milk.  Stir the yolks into the cornstarch mixture with a wooden spoon until completely smooth.  Prepare an ice bath- by filling a large metal bowl with ice and water, this will be used to cool the pastry cream.  Combine the remaining 1 1/2 cups milk with the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and the salt in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil.  Remove the pan from the heat.  Temper the egg mixture by gradually adding about 1/3 of the hot milk mixture, whisking constantly.  Add the remaining milk mixture to the eggs.  Return the mixture to the saucepan and continue cooking over med heat, vigorously stirring (this is a work out for your arms) with a whisk, until the mixture comes to a boil and leaves a trail in the pastry cream, 5-7 mins.  As soon as the cream reaches this stage, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and butter.  Transfer the pan to the ice bath.  Stir occasionally until the pastry cream is cool, about 30 mins.  When cool transfer to a bowl and place wax paper on surface to prevent a skin from forming.  Cover bowl tightly and refrigerate.
While the cream is cooling, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Roll out the tart dough and line a 9 inch tart pan, roll a rolling pan over the top of pan to cut off edges evenly.  Blind bake the crust by covering it with parchment paper and dried beans to weigh it down, baking 10-12 mins until dough is just set and edges look dry.  Then remove the beans and parchment and continue to bake another 6-8 mins until edges are starting to brown and surfaces are evenly dry.  
Strawberry Topping
2 pints fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1/2 cup strawberry jam
Heat the jam in a small saucepan over low heat until it is warm, then strain the jam through a sieve or metal strainer.  Spread the pastry cream in the tart shell in an even layer.  Arrange the strawberries over the surface of the pastry cream, filling the entire tart shell.  Use a pastry brush to coat the strawberries lightly with the warm jam.  Let the glaze set for about 15 mins in the refrigerator.  Keep covered and refrigerated until ready to serve.
Adapted from "Baking at Home with the Culinary Institute of America" a great book!



  1. Beautiful tart! And I'm dying to make that layered meringue cake in the SL issue...I'm thinking soon!

    1. Thanks Lizzy! I know that cake looks great, please post if you make it :) So many recipes, not enough time!

  2. I can see why you are looking forward to the strawberry season - this looks beautiful :D
    And to think I left if all behind... :P

    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Colossal Caramel Peanut Monster Cookies

    1. Thank you Choc Chip Uru! Where did you go that you left it all behind?

  3. What a gorgeous tart, this looks so delicious! Fabulous blog you have, so glad to be your newest follower! xoxo

  4. Beautiful tart. I also look forward to the strawberries and cherries and peaches because they mean summer is coming! Where on the east end are you? We have a house on the border between Blue Point and Patchogue.

    1. Thanks Anita, oh wow what a small world :), we are in Shoreham. Yes I look forward to all the fresh fruit and vegetables, can't wait!

  5. Rosie your quiche looks amazing but that Strawberry Tart has got me wanting to make it right now!! Just always Love your style and and Recipes ...Lisa from