*BERRY TARTS WITH CREMA PASTICCERA..

August 2, 2012

*BERRY TARTS WITH CREMA PASTICCERA..

FOR THE CRUST:
225 g all purpose flour
1/8 tsp. salt
120 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
50 g granulated white sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten

FOR THE CREMA PASTICCERA:
50 g flour
150 g sugar
A vanilla bean, or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 egg yolks
500 ml milk

any kind of fruit (strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, ect.)

TO MAKE THE CRUST:
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour and salt. Set aside. Place the butter in your mixer and beat until softened. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten egg, beating just until incorporated. Add flour mixture all at once and mix just until it forms a ball. Don’t overwork or pastry will be hard when baked.  Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate about one hour or until firm.

Heat up the oven to 200 degrees C. Roll out the pastry till 3mm. Evenly put the chilled pastry onto the bottom and up the sides of un-greased tart tins (10cm). Put back into the fridge for 30 min.

Lightly prick bottom of pastry crust with the tines of a fork (this will prevent the dough from puffing up as it bakes). Line the pastry from the top with baking paper and fill it with peas or beans to keep the pastry in shape. Bake for 15 min. Take out the beans and paper and bake for other 3-5 min or till golden brown.

TO MAKE THE CREAM:
Set all but 50 ml of the milk to warm over a slow burner with the vanilla bean. In the meantime, lightly whisk the yolks in a bowl to break them. Strain the flour into the bowl, whisking gently, and making sure that no lumps form. Whisk in the sugar too, and then the remaining half cup of milk.

By this time the milk on the stove will be about ready to boil. Fish out and discard the vanilla bean, and slowly whisk the milk into the egg-and-milk mixture. Return the cream to the pot and the pot to the fire, and continue cooking over a low flame, stirring gently, until it barely reaches a slow boil. It may thicken to the proper consistency before it boils. If it reaches roughly the consistency of commercially prepared plain yogurt of the sort that will pour from the cup it’s done.

Transfer it to a bowl and let it cool, gently stirring it often to keep a skin from forming across top.

P.S. This one was made for a party before my friend was leaving for US, and it was so great that I was asked to make it again for a birthday party, and this is what came out of it!

Enjoy, K.

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