Friday, April 25, 2014

Fruit Tart - Crostata alla Frutta

Happy Friday!
I would like to start the weekend with something delicious to satisfy your  - and my! - sweet cravings.
I will show you how to prepare this custard filled fruit tart, or as we call it in Italy: crostata di frutta.
It's definitely one of my favorite dessert, to prepare and definitely eat! I baked it many times, and it's always a big hit.
I generally prepare the crust and the crema pasticcera (custard cream) ahead of time, so it has time to cool down. And I decorate the tart at the last minute, so the fruit looks beautiful and fresh.
I love to use berries on top. I bought organic strawberries, raspberries and blackberries at the local farmers market. Unfortunately there were no blueberries available, otherwise I would have used them for sure. You can also explore alternatives and try other types of fruit. Please note that some doesn't work very well, like bananas or apples, unless you use lemon juice to avoid the change in color. But it might get messy anyways, so I suggest to avoid this fruit.

Ready to find out how to make this intensely fruity, perfectly creamy and so enticing fruit tart?
Here is what you'll need.

For the crust:
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks of butter softened (or I Can't Believe It's Not Butter)
  • 2 tablespoons of milk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
For the crema pasticcera (custard cream):
  •  8 fl oz of milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
For the toppings: 
  • about 6 oz of blackberries and/or blueberries
  • about 6 oz of raspberries
  • about 16 oz of strawberries

Start by preparing the cream, so that there will be time for it to cool down.

Step 1: In a small pan, warm up the milk almost to a boil. In another medium size pan, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, vanilla and flour until smooth and fluffy. Make sure there are no lumps.
Step 2: Add a little bit of  the warm milk to the egg mixture, whisking well so that no lumps form. Whisk in the rest of the milk.

Step 3: Place the pan over medium heat and stir continuously until it reaches a slow boil. The cream will thicken, so be careful not to let it stick to the bottom. Lower the flame and cook for only two more minutes. Pour the cream in a glass bowl and let it cool down. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.

Now, let's start working on the crust.
Step 4: Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combines the egg yolks, sugar, vanilla extract, milk and salt. Blend well.
 Step 5: Add the butter and mix well again.

Step 6: Blend in the flour, one cup at the time. 

 Step 7: Grease an 11 inch tart pan with butter and flour. Press the dough to the bottom of the pan with a spoon or your hand (palm or fingers). Sprinkle the top with a little bit of flour if the dough sticks to your hand. Make it as flat as possible. Work with your thumb around the edge to make it even, removing any extra dough. Prick the dough with a fork.
 Step 8: Bake the crust in the oven for about 25-30 minutes, until slightly golden on the edges.
Step 9:  Let the crust cool down completely. If I'm making this tart for supper, I generally prepare the crust and cream after lunch, and  I decorate it before dinner.
Pour the cream on the crust and, with the help of a spoon, spread it around evenly.
 Step 10: Now the fun part!! I like to start from the edges working my way to the middle. I cut the bigger strawberries in half and placed them in a large circle (pointing in). Then, I cut some of the smaller strawberries in half and made a second circle (pointing out).
Step 11: Last, I covered the middle with lots of blackberries and raspberries (and blueberries, when I have them!). You can have as many or as little as you like!
 Looks good, right?


  1. Beautiful presentation! Looks like the perfect dessert for spring!

    1. Thank you Kaitlyn!
      You are right, perfect for this time of the year.
      And the colorful fruit makes the tart always beautiful - no decorating skills necessary!

  2. Beautiful Recipe..i will try it as soon as possible..
    Thanks for sharing:)

    Soy Yogurt-Yo MyGoodness

    1. Thank you Stella! If you try it, let me know what you think! And please send me your picture if you'd like, and I will post it :)

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