strawberry tart – tarte aux fraises

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Strawberries are back people – and they are so cheap – I picked up 500g yesterday for $2.00. They were sweet and delicious with the lush red skin and soft flesh, not sour and tasteless. It’s ideal to use fresh berries for this, at their most ripe too ! One of my favourite flavour combos with the common strawb is balsamic and basil, sweet, tart and floral – and this is where this tart gets interesting! It just makes it all a little bit special.

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** Pre-heat oven to 160*C fan-forced

Ingredients:

Pastry [ Pate Sucree ]
– 220g of gluten free plain flour
– 75g of caster sugar + a pinch of sea salt
– 90g of good quality unsalted butter [ i love lurpak ]
– 2 large free-range egg yolks
– 1 whisked egg white

Custard Filling [ Creme Patissiere ]
– 4 large free-range egg yolks
– 120g of caster sugar
– 50g of gluten-free cornflour
– 1 vanilla bean, halved
– 500ml full fat milk
– 25g of butter
– 30mls of vanilla galliano – totally optional yo!

Glaze
– 150ml of a good quality italian balsamic vinegar – no homebrand biz people, you’ll want the real deal.
– 1/4 of your strawbs, blended into a puree
– 1/3 cup of caster sugar
– 1 vanilla bean

Garnish
– small baby basil leaves
– 2 punnets of strawberries – green bits removed 🙂

Method:
– Right, let’s get started with the pastry. The best part about gluten-free pastry is that because it has no gluten, there is no need to fear overworking it, or it becoming tough. WIN – I also think it holds a really lovely crumb.
1. If you have a food processor or kitchen aid with a dough-hook attachment, chuck everything in the bowl (except the egg-white) and mix until combined. If not, just use your hands and mix in a bowl.
2. Form a little flat round, wrap with clingwrap and refrigerate until chilled.
3. Flour your surface well, and begin to roll out, because the pastry has no gluten in it to hold together, it may rip and become difficult. Just be patient and keep rolling out until it is 3-4mm – it’s pretty forgiving.
4. Make sure both sides are floured well, and roll up onto your rolling pin and roll off gently onto your tart case. Gently push the pastry to snuggly fit the shape of your tin. If it rips, use extra bits and shape them in to fit. Use a knife to trim around the edges. Once your tin is fully lined with pastry, refrigerate for 30 – 45minutes to stop shrinkage when baking.
5. Remove from the refrigerator, and line with baking paper and fill with pie weights, raw rice, or dried beans. Bake for 25minutes.
6. Remove from the oven. Carefully remove the parchment and weights, and brush the tart with the egg white and return the base to the oven for another 10-15minutes or until the pastry is a light golden colour.
7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a rack until needed.

gluten free pate sucree
Whilst your pastry crust is cooling..
8. Heat your milk, vanilla bean and half of your alcohol in a small pot.
9. In a mixing bowl, whip the egg yolks and sugar until thick, pale and creamy. Add the cornflour and mix to combine.
10. Remove your bean pod from the milk, and in a steady stream, pour in half of your milk and whisk thoroughly. Tempering your yolks like this gives you less of a chance of cooking your yolks. Whisk the remaining milk mixture into your eggs and strain through a fine mesh sieve back into your saucepan.
11. Steadily whisk over a medium heat until thick and luscious – making sure to get all corners and space of the saucepan.
12. Remove from the heat and add the butter, continuing to stir until melted and combined.
13. Relocate to a clean bowl and place a piece of cling film directly on the surface of your creme. Refrigerate until chilled.

Meanwhile, while your base is cooling, and your cream is chilling..
14. In a small pot, combine the strawberry puree, balsamic vinegar, sugar and vanilla bean, bring up to the boil, making sure all the sugar has dissolved.
15. Simmer on a medium-low heat until the you have reached your desired acidity and it has a thin jam like consistency.
16. Chill until cold.

Rightio, let’s assemble.
1. In a mixer, or food processor, place the rest of your galliano and your creme patissiere, and mix until combined and smooth.
2. Pour your cream into your tart shell and smooth around evenly.
3. Place your strawbs, nose in the air styles evenly around your tart – and refrigerate until serving.

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You ready ?
4. Slice up your tart accordingly, and drizzle with some balsamic syrup, dress with some fresh baby basil, serve and enjoy ❤

— Serves 10

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