With a puff pastry crust, a delicious vanilla pastry cream filling, and plenty of fruit on top, this strawberry kiwi tart is a delicious end to any meal.
A few weeks ago I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in YEARS.
The first thing she asked is if I’m still baking. Not how I’ve been doing, not what I’m up to, but if I still bake as much as I used to.
(Yes. I bake every now and then. . .Every once in a while. . .)
She remembered a raspberry tart I’d made for a dinner party, like, forever ago.
I remembered that tart very specifically, as I came across it in Living during the height of my puff pastry obsession and immediately planned a dinner party as an excuse to make it.
(I’m not the only person out there who plans dinner parties based upon and centered around just one recipe right? That’s a thing?)
Seriously, my obsession was hard core. I made turnovers (just like these) practically non-stop for months so everyone was glad when I finally used puff pastry for a tart instead.
With all the gorgeous fruit in season I decided to revive my obsession and resurrect that tart, in a new form. Clearly, for this strawberry kiwi tart, I used strawberries and (the prettiest-ever) kiwi but you could use any fruit that strikes your fancy.
The filling (underneath the fruit) is this gorgeous, luscious-and-creamy vanilla pastry cream. If pastry cream intimidates you, please don’t let it.
Sure, it’s not the easiest thing on earth to make and it requires a water bath to cool down, but it’s so worth the effort. As long as you follow the directions you should be fine; be sure not to cook your pastry cream over too high or your eggs will probably scramble. (And scrambled eggs are my biggest issue when I make pastry cream.)
You’ll probably have leftover pastry cream—and lucky you. I recommend keeping it for yourself because it’s sooo good alongside a bowl of fruit as an afternoon snack. But you could also serve it alongside the tart, if you’re a more generous person than I am.
Here’s to old friends and old obsessions! Do you have any culinary obsessions or am I just eccentric?
P.S. The movers come TOMORROW! Annnnnd cue the stress eating :). Have a wonderful week!
- 1 pound puff pastry, thawed
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- 4 cups whole milk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into several chunks
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup heavy cream, chilled
- 1 to 2 cups hulled + sliced strawberries
- 1 to 2 cups peeled + sliced kiwi
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, for dusting (if desired)
- Place the puff pastry on a lightly floured work surface and pinch closed any holes in the dough. (If your puff pastry came in two sheets, place end to end and pinch to form one large sheet.) Roll into a 9- by 18-inch rectangle. Use a pizza cutter or sharp paring knife to trim the edges to form a perfect rectangle. Cut 2 1-inch strips of pastry from the short end and 2 from the long sides of the rectangle. (The rectangle should now be 7 by 16 inches.) Carefully transfer to a large baking sheet. The easiest way to transfer is to fold the large rectangle in thirds, like a letter, then move it. If you try to move without folding your pastry will probably stretch.
- Pierce the rectangle all over with a fork. Use a pastry brush to brush the beaten egg all over the pastry. Set the strips of pastry on the edges of the rectangle, lining them up so they’re even on all sides. Trim the strips to fit, if needed; the strips will overlap at the corners. Brush the beaten egg under the overlapping corners, then brush the top of the strips with the egg wash. Do not let the egg wash drip down the sides of the tart shell. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake the tart shell for 15 minutes, until brown and puffed all over. Remove from the oven and use a clean kitchen towel to press down on the center of the shell, avoiding the edges. Bake for 5 minutes more. Cool completely on a wire rack, pressing down in the center again if needed to prevent shell from being overly puffy inside the edges. (You can make the tart shell up to 1 day in advance but don’t fill until just before you serve the tart.)
- Fill a large bowl with ice water and place in the fridge while you prepare the pastry cream.
- Combine the cornstarch, flour, 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Place the eggs in a second medium mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the flour-cornstarch mixture until well combined.
- Combine the milk and remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a medium saucepan. Place pan over medium-high heat and heat to just under a boil, whisking to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat and, whisking the eggs constantly, very slowly pour hot milk into the egg-flour mixture.
- Transfer the mixture to a clean saucepan set over medium heat. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until mixture has thickened—this will take about 3 minutes.
- Transfer to a large heat-proof mixing bowl and whisk in the butter and vanilla. Whisk vigorously for 30 seconds to release some of the heat. Remove the bowl of ice water from the fridge and set the heat-proof bowl on top of the ice water. Allow the pastry cream to cool, stirring often, until completely chilled, about 10 to 15 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing wrap directly onto the surface of the pastry cream. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Once tart shell is completely cool, place the heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip until soft peaks form, then gently fold into the pastry cream. Gently spread the pastry cream into the bottom of the tart shell in an even layer. (If you have filling left over, store it in the fridge—it makes a delicious dip for fruit.)
- Arrange the sliced fruit on top of the pastry cream. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired, then serve and enjoy.
Adapted from Martha Stewart Living