Serves a Crowd

Maple Creme Fraiche Tart

March  6, 2011
0 Ratings
  • Serves 6-8
Author Notes

This tart was inspired by one of my favorite breakfasts: buttermilk poured over warm cornbread and drizzled with maple syrup. For a more robust maple flavor, I reduced the syrup a bit, a technique I learned from making the maple-pecan granola recipe in Kim Boyce’s cookbook, Good to the Grain. (The granola is awesome by the way). I folded creme fraiche into the custard for some tang and added cornmeal to an all-butter dough for a more textured crust. —Midge

What You'll Need
  • Dough for 9-inch tart pan or 14"x 4.5" rectangular pan*
  • 1 cup AP flour
  • 1/2 cup fine cornmeal
  • 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • small glass ice water
  • Maple Cream Filling
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup creme fraiche
  • 3/4 cup grade B maple syrup (B is key here)
  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  1. Make Crust: Thoroughly combine flour, cornmeal, salt, and sugar together by hand in a bowl or in the bowl of a food processor.
  2. Add butter, and pulse food processor (or cut into flour quickly by hand) just until fat and flours turn into a pebbly mixture.
  3. If using a processor, remove blade and sprinkle about 3 tablespoons of ice water on pebbly mixture. Using the processor or your hands, gently combine until the dough starts to hold together. Add more water as needed. Form dough into a disk and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Roll out dough on floured surface to fit your pan. Gently fit into tart pan, crimping the edges. Refrigerate for another 30 minutes. Pre-heat oven to 400.
  5. Poke dough in tart pan with fork to ventilate. Line with parchment or foil and add pie weights (or beans and/or rice). Bake for 10 minutes. Remove parchment and pie weights and bake for another 5-10 minutes until pie shell starts to look dry-ish on the bottom. Cool. Lower oven temp to 375 degrees
  6. Make Maple Cream Filling: Combine the cream and crème fraiche in a small saucepan. Split vanilla bean and scrape the seeds into the cream, add the bean to the cream as well. Turn the heat to low to gently warm the cream and let the vanilla infuse it.
  7. Pour maple syrup in heavy-bottomed saucepan and turn heat to medium-high for roughly 5 minutes, until it’s reduced by about one-fourth. It’ll get a bit foamy, but you don't want it boiling too vigorously; watch it carefully to make sure it doesn’t boil over. Once its reduced, take it off the heat and let it cool a bit.
  8. Add the reduced syrup to the cream mixture and whisk together until combined over low heat. Remove vanilla bean.
  9. Whisk egg yolks with salt in a medium bowl. Temper the yolks by whisking in a little of the cream/syrup mixture. Gradually add the rest, until it's all incorporated. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a pitcher or large measuring cup.
  10. Pour strained custard into tart shell within about 1/4-inch from the top (still have some left over? see note below*) Carefully slide on rack in center of oven. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the filling is firm to the touch.
  11. Cool on wire rack. To remove tart from pan, slide the outside ring off the pan. Cool and serve at room temperature. Also great cold from the fridge, especially with a cup of coffee for breakfast.
  12. *Note: If you use a 14"x 4.5" tart pan like I did, you'll likely have leftover dough and custard. Sprinkle the dough scraps with cinnamon sugar and spread on a small sheet pan to bake along with the tart for about 10-15 minutes. Pour leftover filling in ramekins and place in a small baking pan; fill halfway with cool water and bake with tart.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • VanessaS
  • checker
  • pauljoseph
  • luvcookbooks
  • mrslarkin

Recipe by: Midge

I’m a journalist who’s covered everything from illegal logging in Central America to merit pay for teachers, but these days I write mostly about travel. I’ve been lucky enough to find myself in some far-flung locales, where poking around markets and grocery stores is my favorite thing to do. Cooking, especially baking, is my way of winding down after a long day; there’s nothing like kneading bread dough to bring you back to earth.

41 Reviews

VanessaS April 3, 2012
This looks great! Reducing the maple syrup is such a good idea- can't wait to try it.
Midge April 8, 2012
Thanks so much VanessaS!
jenniebgood March 30, 2012
This looks wonderful - I'm thinking about making it for Easter Brunch!
Midge April 8, 2012
Thank you! I'd be honored!
Sheryl December 15, 2011
Thank you for sharing your recipe! I made this yesterday for my boyfriend's mother's birthday. It was so good! I used grade A maple syrup because it is what I had, but I reduced it a bit longer and it turned out great!
Midge December 15, 2011
Thanks so much. I'm thrilled you made it!
Midge December 15, 2011
and glad to know that the A works fine too!
checker April 19, 2011
Yum yum yum yum yum. As soon as I have syrup from the family back home I plan on making this...
Midge April 20, 2011
Oh lucky you! Would love to hear if you try it.
pauljoseph April 5, 2011
This looks so wonderful!!
Midge April 6, 2011
thank you pauljoseph!
luvcookbooks March 9, 2011
Oh my goodness! Just got back from Vermont with some maple nut fudge. This recipe will bring back memories of the weekend away with girlfriends. Cheers!!
Midge March 9, 2011
thanks luvcookbooks! Love Vermont.
mrslarkin March 9, 2011
Midge, this is beautiful. I just so happen to have a batch of homemade creme fraiche...
Midge March 9, 2011
thank you mrslarkin. Creme fraiche never seems to last long in my fridge..
I.Fancy.Haggis March 8, 2011
I'm going to beg my wife to make me this over the weekend. Looks absolutely delicious.
Midge March 9, 2011
thanks IFH! MIGirl can make a mean tart.
Waverly March 8, 2011
This sounds wonderful.
Midge March 8, 2011
thanks Waverly. Love all of Ginger's Kitchen submissions!
cheese1227 March 8, 2011
Lovely! I was in TJs picking out syrup and I remembered your recommendation of Grade B syrup!
Midge March 8, 2011
Thanks cheese1227! Did TJ's have B?
cheese1227 March 8, 2011
Yes, the TJs (as in Joe, not Max) in Bethesda had both A and B.
TasteFood March 8, 2011
What a great yet subtle combination of flavors! I love your idea to add a little tang to the sweetness of the maple syrup.
Midge March 8, 2011
thanks so much TasteFood.
Marguerite P. March 8, 2011
This looks so parents just started tapping our maple trees back home. This will have to go on the list of ways to celebrate our first batch of syrup!
Midge March 8, 2011
thanks SaltHands. Would love to know how it turns out with your syrup if you try it.
fiveandspice March 7, 2011
Midge! Another fabulous looking treat! When are we going to have a potluck?! :)
Midge March 8, 2011
Thanks so much fiveandspice. I've been eyeing your scrumptious-sounding blue cheese tart. It IS time for a Boston potluck, to celebrate the receding of the snowbanks! (Or are there more to come?).
TheWimpyVegetarian March 7, 2011
This looks so wonderful!! I've gotta make this one!!
Midge March 8, 2011
thank you ChezSuzanne! I've been averaging two slices a day, not counting all those little slivers here and there..
nogaga March 7, 2011
What do you think would happen with Grade A? I think that's the only grade exported...
nogaga March 7, 2011
Meant to say: this is so tempting! But we don't seem to have Grade B
Midge March 7, 2011
Using Grade A would make for a more delicate maple flavor. I suppose you could try reducing the syrup a bit more, but I'd be careful not to take it too far.
TiggyBee March 7, 2011
Simple and straight to the point. I just know it as delish as it looks!
Midge March 7, 2011
thanks TiggyBee!
monkeymom March 6, 2011
Oh, I can't help but say YUM.
mrslarkin March 6, 2011
Midge March 7, 2011
thank you both! Just had a slice and it was pretty yum.
drbabs March 7, 2011
me three!
hardlikearmour March 6, 2011
Yum! I've just been researching tapping maple trees to make syrup. I've got a big old Norway maple (not as good as a sugar maple, but supposed to work) that I plan on tapping next winter just to give it a try.
Midge March 7, 2011
Thanks hla! How cool would it be to tap your own maple syrup?!