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French fresh fruit tarts are the best light dessert, during spring and summer days, with a cup of Gykuro green tea or Oolong tea. Usually, the shell is a blind-baking of Sablé dough (la pâte sablée) using dried beans or rice, then filled with a classic pastry cream (crème pâtissière), and the fresh fruits, like strawberries, peaches, or cherries are arranged beautifully, over little drops of fruit coulis or jam, and on top, a fine layer of fruit glaze (nappage) to protect the fruits from oxidation. This recipe is adapted from Dominique Ansel’s French pastry classics recipe cookbook.
How To Make A Strawberry Fruit Tart?
Sablé Shell Ingredients
- 81g confectioners’ sugar
- 127g unsalted butter, softened
- 50g large egg
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped, or 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 186g of all-purpose flour
- 47g cornstarch
- Dash of salt
- An 8-inch tart pan
- 150g strawberry jam
- 2 lbs fresh strawberries, hulled and halved lengthwise
- 300g pastry cream (see: pastry cream recipe)
- 1/2 cup fruit glaze (nappage)
- In a stand mixer, cream the confectioners’ sugar and butter for 30 seconds on low speed. Add the egg, and mix on medium speed until evenly combined.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, stir in the flour mixture and vanilla bean seeds, or vanilla extract, until just combined, about 10 seconds.
- Finish mixing the dough by hand to ensure it is not over-mixed. Note: The dough should be creamy, smooth, and have the consistency of cookie dough.
- Flatten the dough between two sheets of parchment paper, into a 1-inch-thick disk. Transfer the dough to a sheet pan and refrigerate until firm, 30 to 45 minutes.
- Flour the work surface and a rolling pin. Roll the dough into a rectangle about ⅛ inch (3mm) thick. Place on a sheet pan and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Flatten the dough, using the tart ring as a guide, and cut a circle from the center of the dough sheet that is 1 inch (2.5 cm) wider than the outside of the ring.
- Butter the inside of the tart ring. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and place the tart ring at the center of the pan. Place the dough round on top of the ring.
- Push down gently with your fingers and press the dough along the inside of the ring, making sure to get into the inside edges.
- Use a knife to trim the excess dough. Return to the refrigerator to chill for about 30 minutes more.
- Blind-Bake the tart shell on the center rack for 15 to 20 minutes, until it’s lightly golden. Unmold the tart shell while still warm. Let cool completely, at room temperature.
- Cover the shell with the strawberry jam, then fill it with pastry cream. Arrange strawberry halves evenly, and gently brush fruit glaze over them.
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