Enjoy this guest post and recipe by Jennifer Farley at Savory Simple:
The idea of making a homemade strawberry tart from scratch might sound intimidating, but I promise it’s not difficult at all! The key to preparing simple tarts at home is to use a few good quality ingredients and not much else. Fresh California strawberries, creamy mascarpone cheese, sugar, pure vanilla extract, and a delicate dough are all you need to create a lovely homemade tart. I’ve suggested a very forgiving tart dough recipe here, but you can certainly use a store-bought pie crust if you’re not ready to venture into homemade dough just yet.
I have a few recipe tips for you to help make this a fun, easy baking experience:
- Keep in mind that because these tarts are smaller, it’s easier to roll the dough into the pans. I’ve used 4.75-inch fluted tart pans with removable bottoms. Use your thumb to gently press the dough into the fluted sections.
- If you’re using homemade dough, weigh it down with beans wrapped in foil while baking to prevent the dough from puffing up. If you’re using store-bought dough, you can skip the beans and just prick the bottom with a fork several times to let air escape.
- Try to select similarly sized strawberries for the tart; it will create a beautiful, even presentation when you go to layer the berries over the filling. If your strawberries are very sweet, the tart will be plenty sweet on its own with the mascarpone filling. If they could use a little pick me up, dust some powdered sugar on top.
- 2¾ cups all-purpose flour (12 oz)
- 3 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 8 oz unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
- 2 large egg yolks
- ¼ cup cold water
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 24-32 small to medium strawberries (6-8 per tart, see notes), hulled and sliced in half
- 8 oz mascarpone cheese
- 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- Confectioners’ sugar for serving (optional)
- Place the flour and sugar in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add butter and pulse several more times until the butter is incorporated.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, water, and vanilla. With the machine running, add the liquid ingredients until the dough forms. Turn the mixture out onto plastic wrap, kneading once or twice if there are unevenly mixed spots, then flatten and chill for two hours.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to about ¼ inch thin, then divide into quarters. One at a time, roll each piece around a rolling pin, then unroll into the tart shell, gently pressing the dough into the flutes. Trim away excess dough, and chill for 15 minutes while preheating the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place the tart pans on a baking sheet. Use a fork to prick several holes in the bottom of the dough, then top with foil and dried beans. Bake for around 15 minutes, carefully removing the beans midway through, until the dough has firmed up on the bottom. Allow to cool.
- In a small bowl, combine the mascarpone, sugar, and vanilla extract, stirring until smooth. Use a small spatula or spoon to spread evenly between the 4 tart shells (about 2 tablespoons each).
- Layer the strawberries on top of the filling, starting with the outer circle and moving toward the center.
- If using, dust with a light layer of sifted confectioners’ sugar.
- Tart should be served within 2-3 hours for best results.
If using store-bought pie dough, roll into the tart shells and bake according to package instructions. Allow to cool before adding the filling.