How to Make a Summer Berry Tart (Recipe)

Everyone knows that summer is the time of sunshine warm weather. What coincides with this beautiful time is berry season. It’s the best time to go strawberry picking and raspberry picking — when the fruit is sweet and ripe, and super delicious.

This year I caught some inspiration from Pastry Freak by Ludo, a youtube channel and instagram account that shows Ludo, and professional pastry chef, creating amazing and delicious pastries. I was inspired by a recent cherry tart recipe, where he used almond cream, cherry compôte, and a berry crème légère. I had never thought of creating a pastry cream with berry puree in place of the milk, and I was itching to try it out.

I got my hands on some fresh strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries and turned them into a purée, and turned half of that purée into a berry pastry cream, then lightened it up with some whipped cream to make it into a berry crème légère, similar to a mousse. The end result was a crisp sweet crust pastry, a tender and fluffy almond cream filling, a sweet and tart berry purèe, and a light and fluffy, sweet yet tangy, berry mousse, which I made aesthetically pleasing with a topping of fresh cut berries and dollops of piped berry crème légère. It was so delicious, fresh, and the perfect balance of sweet and tart, soft and crisp. A beautiful entanglement of flavour and texture — perfect for the summer.

Although this tart has multiple components, don’t be intimidated, each component is fairly easy to put together and always remember it’s all about the joy of baking and eating this wonderful dessert.

Here is the recipe and video tutorial below

Summer Berry Tart

  • Difficulty: Medium
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This recipe makes enough for 2 x 8″ tart shells

For the Sweet Pastry

141g (1 cup + 2 tbsps) all purpose flour
141g (1 cup + 1 tbsp) cake flour
85g (2/3 cup) icing sugar
158g (2/3 cup) cold butter, cut into cubes
3g (1/2 tsp) vanilla extract
1 egg
17g (2 tbsp) cold water

For the Berry Purée

1 lb fresh berries of your choice, I used strawberries, blackberries, and rasperries
150g (3/4 cup) sugar
20g (2 tbsp) lemon juice

For the Berry Crème Légère (adapted from Pastry Freak by Ludo)

225g (1 cup) berry purée
25g (2 tbsp) sugar
20g (2 tbsp) cornstarch
1 egg yolk

80g (1/3 cup) 35% heavy whipping cream, whipped to medium peaks

For the Almond Cream

96g (1 cup) almond flour
32g (1/4 cup) cake flour

100g (1/3 cup + 1 tbsp) soft butter
100g (1/2 cup) white sugar
1 egg

For the Sweet Pastry

  1. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, or in a medium bowl with clean fingers, mix the flours, icing sugar, and butter cubes on low speed or cut the butter into small chunks into the flour until the mixture resembles sand.
  2. Add in the egg, water, and vanilla extract, and stir until just combined.
  3. Dump onto a clean work surface and gather into a dough mass, and place into plastic wrap, and leave in the fridge to chill for 4hrs or overnight.
  4. Once chilled, divide into 2 and roll out to 1/3 inch thick, or until it is wider than diameter of the tart pan and the height of the walls of the pan combined so that when you place the dough in, it evenly covers every inch of the pan.
  5. Lift and push the dough into the bottom edges of the pan and roll your rolling pin over the top to get a clean edge.
  6. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 15-20 min before prebaking* at 350F for 15 min.

*To prebake, poke the bottom of the dough with a fork. Optional: line the dough with a piece of parchment paper and fill with baking beans or rice to fully ensure the pastry doesn’t bubble up.

For the Berry Purée

  1. Place the berries into a saucepan with the sugar and lemon juice. Cook on medium heat for 15 minutes or until stewed and juicy.
  2. Carefully blend with a hand blender or place into a blender to blend until smooth.
  3. Optional: Pass through a sieve to get rid of any seeds.
  4. Reserve half for the tarts and take 1 cup for the pastry cream.

For the Berry Crème Légère

  1. Place the purée into a medium saucepan and set aside.
  2. In a medium heatproof mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolk, cornstarch, and sugar until pale yellow and creamy.
  3. Place the purée onto medium heat and cook until it comes to a boil. Take off heat, and gently pour or ladle a bit into the egg bowl, whisking the mixture simultaneously. Continue until about 1/2 the purée is in the bowl and whisked in completely.
  4. Pour back into the saucepan and whisk continuously on medium heat, bringing it to a boil and cooking for about 2 min or until it is super thick and custard-like. Take off heat and transfer to a clean bowl, placing plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the custard so that it doesn’t form a skin.
  5. Refrigerate until completely cool before whisking to break up, and folding in the whipped cream in two additions to lighten into a mousse-like texture.

For the Almond Cream

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, and add in the egg. Whisk until it also becomes pale and fluffy.
  2. Sift in the almond and cake flour, and stir until just combined.
  3. Place into a piping bag and pipe into the prebaked tart shells, spreading out with a mini offset spatula.
  4. Bake at 375F for 10-15 min or until slightly golden brown on the surface.

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