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Strawberry & Forest Fruits Tart with Crema Pasticcera

On Sunday evening my "baby sis" returned from a month Au Pairing in France, so to mark her return home I decided to make a mouthwatering delicious Strawberry & Forest Fruits Tart with an Italian touch of my favourite Crema Pasticcera filling... no leftovers here!

(Serves Eight to Ten)

  •  180g Plain Flour
  • 100g Cold Butter, diced
  • 1 tbsp Icing Sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp Cold Water
Crema Pasticcera (Italian Custard Cream)
  • 500ml Whole Milk
  • 80g Plain Flour
  • 150g Caster Sugar
  • 1 Vanilla Pod
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • Zest of 1 lemon, cut in large pieces with a knife
  • Strawberries 
  • Blackberries
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries 
  • Red Currents
  • 1 tbsp of Marmalade/Jam of your choice
  • 1 tsp boiling water
To make the Pastry put the flour, butter, icing sugar, egg yolk and water into a food processor and pulse until the mixture starts to bind - do not overwork the pastry!

Put the pastry onto a lightly floured surface, gather until smooth then roll out and line a  23cm x 2.5cm loose-bottom flan tin. Neaten the edges by trimming. Press the pastry into the flutes - don't worry if it cracks, just press it back together. Prick the base with a fork, cover with clingfilm and chill overnight.

Blind bake the pastry for 5mins at 200C then reduce the heat to 180C and finish baking for about 15mins or until dry. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely before filling.

To prepare the Crema Pasticcera gently bring the milk to a boil (setting aside 50ml) in a medium sized saucepan, in the meantime slice the vanilla pods lengthways and extract the seeds. Add the seeds, vanilla pod and slices of lemon zest to the milk. Remove the pan from the heat and leave to infuse for 10-15mins.

With an electric whisk mix the egg yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the mixture to the hot milk and stir well.

Unite the sifted flour with the liquid mixture little by little stirring constantly - remove the vanilla pods and lemon zest.

Put every thing on the hob and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. In order for the mixture to thicken let simmer on a low heat for 5-7mins, continuing to beat with a whisk to avoid lumps.

Now add the remaining 50ml of cold milk to the custard, stirring occasionally. Take of the heat and pout into a glass/plastic bowl to cool down completely: your custard is now ready.

TIP: To avoid formation of a "film on the surface while the Crema Pasticcera is cooling, cover with a disc of greaseproof paper on contact.

A glaze is needed to seal the fruit topping once the tart has been assembled, this is made by simply bringing to a gentle simmer the marmalade/jam of your choice on the hob with a little boiling water.

To assemble and decorate:
Now that the pastry and custard have completely cooled down spoon the custard into the casing - keep the pastry in its tin. For the topping I chose strawberries and forest fruits and arranged them in their own circular pattern. Brush the glaze on all the fruit once decorated and refrigerate the tart for at least 2 hours.

On serving remove from the tin and serve straight from the fridge.

Tried It? Liked It? Tweaked It? Let me know!

Patz x



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