Serves a Crowd
Flakey, Cream-Cheese Tart with Mixed Berries
July 6, 2011
- Serves 12
I like to experiment with new ingredients, mixing methods, and unique flavorings, particularly in baking. It is summer time and fruits are in abundance. On my blog I am running a tutorial-series about tart doughs (Pate brisee, Pate sucree and Pate sablee), and raspberries are perfect for filling a pre-baked shell. The colorful appearance of this tart can take your breath away; but at this point I rather breath and enjoy the bites.
What You'll Need
- Pate brisee (flakey tart crust) with cream cheese
Cake flour, unsifted
All-purpose flour, unsifted
Butter, unsalted, frozen, cut into 1-inch cubes
Farmer cheese, or Philadelphia cream cheese
White vinegar, or white wine vinegar
Cold water, as needed
Heavy cream, at least 30% fat, whipped to medium-firm peaks
- I used the rolling-pin method; meaning, the butter and flour was combined by pressing and rolling the butter into the flour mixture as compared to the Food Processor Method, where the ingredients are pulsed.
- Combine the two flours, place the butter cubes on top of the flour mixture and with the cold rolling-pin, roll and press the butter pieces into the flour mixture a few times, back and forth. Gather the resulting "dough" into a cold bowl and freeze it for 20 minutes
- Repeat the above process two more times; the second time add the cheese and heavy cream and incorporate it into the dough with your hand. The dough should be placed into the freezer after each step for 15 minutes.
- If not used immediately, divide the dough into two, wrap both doughs with a plastic wrap, on top of that with a foil wrap, press them into a disk and freeze it.
- If used immediately, pre-heat the oven to 450F; prepare the lower third shelf of the oven for accepting the baking pan
- Roll the dough into a circle (about two inch larger in diameter than the tart pan). I used a 9 inch pan and rolled the dough into a 12-inch diameter circle. Note: you do not need to roll this dough between two parchment papers, because the cream cheese holds the dough together nicely, without sticking
- Butter the tart pan with the removable bottom.
- Roll the dough around the rolling-pin, place the buttered tart pan under the rolling-pin, and unwrap the dough into the pan. Make sure to press the dough into the bottom, the corners and sides of the pan. Cut the access dough; you can use it for decorations. You could also fold it back into the pan for reinforcing the sides of the tart shell.
- Pick the bottom of the dough with a fork all around, then cover it with a foil paper and place either store-bought pie weighs, or use beans or rice on the foil to prevent the dough from puffing up.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 400F and blind bake the dough for 20 minutes.
- Remove the weighs and the foil paper and bake the dough for another 15 minutes, until it reaches a nice reddish-brown color
- Let the tart shell cool for 20 minutes and prepare a "sealer". Two tablespoons apricot jam, diluted with 2 tablespoons water and let it boil once, then strain it. Note: you can use a liqueur instead of the water, if you so desire for the taste.
- Paint the bottom of the prebaked tart shell with the sealer, using a pastry brush
- Spread a thin layer of whipped cream on the bottom of the tart shell
- You are ready to arrange the fruit medley (raspberries, blueberries and apricots sliced to 1/4 inch) on top of the whipped cream, decoratively (see photo). Brush the top of the fruits with the left over sealer.
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