Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Art of the Rustic Tart

Does pastry make you nervous? Are you just "not a baker?" Then rustic tarts are for you!

I was so excited to plan an event at my work called "The Art of the Rustic Tart" to introduce my co-workers to the simple and easy art of making a rustic summer fruit tart. We made this event very easy by using pre-made pie crust (I'm partial to Pillsbury Refrigerated rolled pie crust, fresh summer fruit, jams and lemon curd, an egg wash and different sugars. These simple ingredients plus some fun cutters provided an amazing palette for beautiful rustic tarts.

The basic directions:

1. Unroll the pie crust ( or make your own!) and cut or trim a base
2. Fold a crust to make an edge. If you make a standing edge, it may slump in the oven, so a simple fold is just fine.
3. Put a layer of jam or lemon curd if you like or not.
4. Add the fruit- we had sliced peaches, apricots, whole blueberries, sliced strawberries
5. Sprinkle with sugar (brown or white or even flavored sugars- we had some rosebud sugar, vanilla sugar) and spices like cinnamon
6. Dot with small pieces of butter
7. Add any cutouts for decoration
8. Brush the crust with a beaten egg to give it great color
9. Bake at around 375 to 400 until the crust is golden brown and cooked.

You can see that there are so many ways to make these! You can also put your pie crust base into a muffin pan to create more of a tartlet.

And as you can see, the results were quite beautiful.

And delicious! So even if you aren't a "baker" I hope you give this a try!