Fresh Fruit Tart with Mascarpone

At this time of year there is nothing better than a nice fruit tart, made with fresh summer fruits.  I therefore decided to make such a tart but, instead of the more usual creme patissiere that acts as the bed for the fruit I decided to use mascarpone, and some white chocolate. That combination, with a little cream, gives such a silky smooth texture and a great flavour, particularly if enhanced by a little citrus juice too.

For my fruits I decided on kiwi, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries but any summer fruit would work very well I am sure.  As well as varying the fruits, varying the quantities of each also adds an individuality to the tart.

For the pastry crust I decided to make a simple but very good, shortcrust pastry that works so well in a tart.

The recipe is very simple and only takes a few hours, so it can be made in the morning, ready to serve as a lovely dessert later in the day.

My tart turned out very well indeed, the pastry was light, crisp and so tasty and complemented the mascarpone and fruit so well.  It took all my will power not to eat slice after slice right away.

Fresh Fruit Tart with Mascarpone

                                                                  Fresh Fruit Tart with Mascarpone – Video

Ingredients:
For the pastry:

  • 250g(1 2/3 cups) cake and pastry flour(or plain flour) based on 150g per cup.
  • 100g(1 cup) icing sugar
  • 150g(10 1/2 tbsp) unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
  • 2 medium egg yolks(large in USA)
  • seeds from one vanilla pod

For the mascarpone filling:

  • 165g(3/4 cup) mascarpone
  • 60g(1/3 cup) white chocolate chopped into small pieces
  • 60ml(1/4 cup) double cream(heavy cream is fine)
  • 5 or 6 teaspoons of lime juice
  • pinch of salt

For the fruit:

  • 2 kiwi fruit peeled and sliced in a 1/4 inch slices then halved(leave one whole for the centre)
  • Raspberries, whole
  • Strawberries, hulled and cut into fairly equal pieces
  • Blueberries whole
  • About 400 grams total weight of the three fruits combined should be more than enough.
  • 2 or 2 tbsp apricot jam with 1 tbsp water.

Method:

  1. In the bowl of a food processor, or similar(or you can do this all by hand, rubbing in with your fingers) place the flour, sugar , vanilla bean seeds and butter.
  2. Pulse repeatedly until the mixture resembles coarse sand or breadcrumbs.
  3. Add the egg yolks and pulse again, processing until the mixture starts to clump together.
  4. Turn the mixture out onto a work surface, or into a bowl, and use your hands to gently knead the mixture into a dough.
  5. Form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap, then chill for about 45 minutes.
  6. On a lightly floured work surface roll the dough out into a circle large enough to fill a 9inch/23cm tart tin.
  7. Carefully roll the pastry onto the rolling pin and place into the tart tin.
  8. Gently press the dough onto the base and sides of the tin and cut off any excess.  You can patch any cracks or breaks as this dough is very forgiving.
  9. Cover again with plastic wrap and chill for a further 20 minutes as you preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
  10. Take the tart tin out of the fridge and use a fork to prick all over the base of the pastry dough.
  11. Line it with parchment paper and then fill with baking beans or rice or similar.
  12. Bake in the oven for 12 minutes then remove the beans and parchment paper and bake for a further 15 minutes, until the base has dried out and the pastry has slightly changed colour. Then remove and allow to cool completely.
  13. Place the white chocolate and the cream into a bowl and heat in a microwave, in 10 second bursts stirring each time, until the chocolate has melted and is mixed into the cream( you can do this on a bain marie/double boiler instead if you wish).
  14. Put 1/3 of the mascarpone into the chocolate/cream mixture and whisk until smooth.
  15. Add the salt and lime juice and whisk again.
  16. Add the remaining mascarpone and whisk again until it is all nice and smooth.
  17. Pour the mixture into the tart crust and spread around to fill the base.
  18. Place the fruit onto the top of the mascarpone filling, in whichever pattern, combination, you prefer.
  19. Heat the water and apricot jam and mix to combine.
  20. Strain out any lumps of fruit in the heated jam.
  21. Gently brush the jam onto the fruits to glaze them.
  22. Place in the fridge to chill and set up for about 30 minutes.  The the tart is ready to serve.

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