At last Spring has sprung. The snow is melting. Our daytime high is reaching the mid-fifties.
We had fresh strawberries for dessert with friends the other night (thank you, Andrea!) and they were some of the best I can remember. Turns out they were $1 per pound at my grocery, too. So, I snatched up 5 pounds with this very tart in mind. I stumbled upon this recipe years ago in Martha Stewart’s Living magazine and it’s been burning a hole in my overflowing recipe to-do file ever since.
Much to Adam’s annoyance, I didn’t get started until 9:00 pm last night and didn’t finish until 11:15 pm. Such working hours can put a strain on any relationship, especially when you live in a 500 SF studio apartment. Needless to say there was grumbling and growling from the general direction of our bedroom when I removed the tart from the oven, set it to cool, etc, etc. I’m happy to report that serving the tart for breakfast, no less on a ho-hum Thursday morning, smoothed things over quickly.
So, my marriage is fine and the tart? Well, the tart is quite good. Labor intensive, but worth it. I will definitely make this again.
Adapted from Martha Stewart
I decreased the sugar content by half because I thought my berries were plenty sweet on their own and I hate when fruit desserts are ruined with too much sugar. However, next time I will use the full amount of sugar called for because this filling should be sweet, almost like jam, but with more texture. The crust is buttery and not too rich and I just feel that the full amount of sugar would have balanced things out nicely. Otherwise, I wouldn’t adjust a thing.
Pate Brisee (tart dough/crust)
- 3/4 cup sorghum flour *
- 2/3 cup white or brown rice flour
- 1/3 cup potato starch (not flour!)
- 1/3 cup tapioca or arrowroot starch
- 1/3 cup sweet rice flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 15 tablespoons clarified butter (0r regular butter, or Spectrum organic shortening) chilled and cut into small pieces **
- 1/4 cup ice water
Pulse flours, sugar, salt in food processor. Add clarified butter pieces and pulse a few times until mixture resembles coarse meal. With machine running add water until dough just comes together.
Alternatively, mix flours, sugar, and salt with whisk. Cut in butter using two knives or a pastry cutter until mix resembles coarse meal (butter is the size of peas). Add water and mix with a spatula or spoon until dough just comes together.
Divide dough in half, wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour (when I’m in a rush, I’ll freeze the dough for 10 minutes or so to speed up the process).
- 3 pounds strawberries (about 8 cups), hulled and sliced
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/3 cup cornstarch or arrowroot starch
- 1 batch of Pate Brisee (above)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon water
- turbinado or sanding sugar for dusting
Soak strawberries and sugar for 1 hour. Drain off liquid and discard (or keep! it makes a great simple syrup for iced tea!). Add cornstarch to berries and stir.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Roll out half of dough on lightly floured surface to approximately 10″ in diameter, or approximately 1″ overhang. Gently lay dough in 9″ removable bottom tart pan, gently press dough into sides. Prick the bottom with a fork. Pour strawberry mixture over dough. Refrigerate to keep dough firm.
Roll out second half of dough on lightly floured surface to approximately 10″ round. Remove tart from refrigerator and carefully lay the top layer of dough over the filling and press edges to seal.
Using a paring knife, make decorative slits in tart top. Mix oil and water and brush the top of the dough. Sprinkle with sanding sugar.
Place tart on baking sheet and bake 25 minutes. Reduce heat to 400 degrees and continue to bake an additional 30-35 minutes until top is brown and filling is bubbling. Cover with foil if to begins to brown too quickly. Remove from oven and cool completely before serving.
* If you’re not gluten-free simply substitute the mix of flours with 2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
** If you’re not casein-free substitute real butter for the ghee or shortening.