I found out that today is National Raspberry Tart Day. Not sure why or what that means....but it got me thinking that I have never made a tart in my life. I love raspberries.....hmmm....could today be the day? Ta-Da!!! (or, as Karen from Will and Grace says.... taaaa-taaaaaa's). I know, I watch way too much late night T.V. What can I say? It's perfect for a numb mind after a long day.
Anyways....today was the day that I made my very first ever tart. I looked around at various recipes. I even found a tart pan in my cupboard. (It was one of those Baker Squares pans that I got eons ago, from some kind of mail-in offer, but had never used.) I was bummed out when I discovered that the pan didn't have removable sides (like those spring-form pans for cheesecake). I almost didn't go through with my tart plan but when I found out that my neighbor (who's old enough to be my grandmother) didn't have a removable side tart pan either, I felt....well...old-fashioned but normal. At least normal enough to continue on.
Now for the recipes. I found a great recipe on BakeSpace but the crust required pie-ish type handling and I wasn't in the mood to deal with that. But the inside custard sounded great. The Betty Crocker website had a great cookie type crust recipe for a lemon tart so I decided, "what the heck...I'll use the best of both worlds and make my life easy". It worked (waddaya know?). I used the Better Crocker crust recipe and the BakeSpace custard recipe.....taaa-taaaaaaaaaa's!!! (nothing like a tart cooking a tart....hahahahaha)
Here's where I got the parts for my recipe, in case you wanna check out the souce:
Now that we have the recipe in order, the tart pan will suffice and all the ingredients are on hand.... I went to the grocery store this morning and made sure. Oh...I have to confess that fresh Raspberries were priced out of this world!! Something like $5.99 for a tiny little handful so I ended up getting the whole frozen raspberries instead....just so ya know. Ooook...ready?
For the "Cookie Crust":
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
Heat oven to 400'. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients. You will need to make sure its combined well (no clumps of butter). A soft dough will form. Press dough into your ungreased tart pan (I believe my pan was 9"). Make sure you press up the sides and along the bottom, making it as even as possible. Don't worry too much if its a bit thin as it will thicken when cooked.
I could've pressed my dough a little more up the sides.Bake 13 - 15 minutes or until light golden brown (sorry, I forgot to take a picture of the cooked crust). Let cool completely (at least 45 minutes).
Now for the filling:
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 1/2 cups light cream (I used 2 cups half & half and 1/2 cup milk)
1 tsp vanilla extract (I always seem to spill in a little extra...oops..gee darn)
2 large egg yolks
Whisk the sugar and cornstarch together in a thick bottomed saucepan.
Place the pan over medium heat and whisk in the cream and vanilla. Cook, stirring constantly and thoroughly for several minutes with a heat resistant spoon
until cream thickens and begins to bubble. Remove pan from heat.
Whisk the egg yolks in a medium bowl.
Slowly pour about half of the warm cream mixture into the bowl with the eggs while whisking continuously. This process will temper the eggs without cooking them so that you don't end up with scrambled eggs in your tart.
Pour the egg / cream mixture back into the pan; return pan to heat and cook for another 2 - 3 minutes, until the cream is almost as thick as pudding.Pour into a bowl. Cover the custard with plastic wrap so that it doesn't develop a skin while cooling (you know what George Carlin use to say about pudding skins, don't you?). Refrigerate until chilled (at least an hour or more).
Here are my little frozen buddies, defrosting while the custard is cooling.
When you are ready to serve your tart, fill the crust shell with your custard. Place fruit on top and get ready to enjoy. If my berries hadn't been frozen and weren't so...soft, I could've "arranged" them instead of just tossing them on there. O'well....you do what you can do. In the end, it all tastes great.
Oh...and the reason I was so concerned about my tart pan was because I didn't think I'd be abot able to remove the tart slices very easily....but...no worries...all was good. The slices came out so easy....you'd think they were on a serving platter instead of the pan it was cooked in. I dunno, maybe thats normal for tarts. This tart is clueless....