June 27, 2009 § 4 Comments
I’ve had Ina’s Strawberry Tart recipe printed for quite some time now. I’ve held off on making it because I wanted to find perfectly ripe strawberries for these. It’s not a complicated recipe but I didn’t want to invest the time and ingredients unless I had sweet and ripe strawberries. A few days ago while at the grocery store, I walked by the produce section and I smelled the strawberries without even looking for them. That was my queue, it was time to make some tarts! Next to the strawberries were some berrilicious looking blueberries so I picked a couple of packages too.
I followed the recipe almost exact except that I used Cointreau instead of Cognac (I don’t keep Cognac in the liquor cabinet). By the time everything was ready to assemble, I decided to leave off the apricot jelly glaze (call it lazy but I’d been in the kitchen all day making ribs and other sides so I was a bit tired). I’ve read that the primary reason for the glaze is to keep the fruits looking fresh and since we were going to eat the tarts right away, I opted to leave it off. I do like the taste of glaze on tarts but decided to leave it off anyway.
I started by making the pastry cream first. I probably could have done it either way but I chose to do the pastry cream first and then do the crust since I was cooking the ribs right after. No need to preheat the oven twice.
One thing I have to mention is that the custard does come together almost in a blink of an eye. You’re cooking on low, stirring, and stirring, and stirring, and wondering if it’ll ever thicken and then bam! The mixture thicken almost instantaneously and you’re like, geekahootie! where’s my whisk??? Anyway, it took about 7.5 minutes for my mixture to come together. And then the longest 2 minutes (for my arms) of whisking thick custard. I made sure that the plastic wrap completely covered the surface of the custard before sticking it in the fridge. Wouldn’t want a nasty film to develop, yuk!
Then onto the crust. The crust is really easy to make in the food processor. It took longer to wash the parts than to make the crust dough. These turned out so flaky!
Overall results? Oh my, was the tart delicious! I liked having the blueberries on it too. As a matter of fact, this doesn’t have to be just strawberries, put whatever kind of fruit you want! Depending on which kind, you might want to put the apricot preserve on to keep the fruit from browning.
I love pastry cream/custards and this one was very good. Straight forward recipe, just make sure you stay with the custard mixture and continuously stirring it while cooking! The only thing I didn’t like, and I knew this going in, was the clean-up, lots of stuff to wash. Is it worth the effort? For me, a special occasion would be well worth it. Everyday dessert, fagetaboutit! I still have 2 tart crusts waiting to be assembled. Maybe I’ll do up the apricot preserve glaze for those. Or not…
Hope everyone is having a great weekend!