Ooh la la, Tarte aux fraises!

Hello everyone!  My name is Jaimi Gadaix and I am very proud to be a part of Blue House Blog!  I will be sharing with you my inspirations, favorite things, recipes and sometimes even travel ideas.  I am truly humbled to be in the company of such talented, artistic and crafty women and I’m hoping that along the way, some of that amazing craftiness will rub off on me.   I am a former corporate Marketing gal and now, I am home raising my two beautiful children, Mila & Rémi.  I am married to a handsome French man, Arnaud and in my little spare time, I work with Blue House and am the creator and author of a little blog called Nook & Burrow.  Thanks for having me and happy reading!

It is officially Spring and unofficially warm.  So, it is this in-between time of year that so many of us begin to dream of warmer weather and all things related to those sun-filled days.  How many of you have started making vacation plans, buying bathing suits (yikes!), wearing flip flops, looking forward to summertime BBQs and picking fresh fruit?  Well, I did recently take a vacation to Florida, bought a bathing suit (yikes!) and donned those flip flops.  But now that I’m back home in Michigan and my spring fever is in overdrive, there was one thing left to do on my agenda.  Practice one of my favorite summertime recipes with one of my favorite foods ever. 

Strawberries are a wonder food of summer and it is one of those fruits that is very universally appealing, so baking with strawberries is a sure crowd pleaser.  Strawberry pies are so yummy and traditional, but I really love to make tartes.  In France (where my husband was raised), people make sweet and savory tartes and they are always so delicious and fun.  Tartes are like pies, but with no top crust, still as tasty, easy to make with kids and often a bit healthier since you are not using as much dough.  I tend to like mine very natural (not much sugar) and rustic (folded over dough in a free-form way).  It makes it less daunting of a task to make the dessert and your kiddos can totally help.  As an added bonus, we found that Strawberries are on sale right now, at $1 per pound!

If you don’t have time to make your own crust, the store bought pastry dough or pie crust (that comes in rolls) substitute just fine.

Bon Apetit!

Tarte aux Fraises Rustique (Rustic Strawberry Tarte)

Recipe Ingredients

Pastry Crust:

  • 1 stick (1⁄2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 11⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp confectioners’ sugar
  • 1⁄4 tsp salt
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp ice water

Filling:

  • 11⁄2 lb strawberries, hulled
  • 1⁄4 cup
  • 11⁄2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp grated lemon zest
  • 2 tsp cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preparation: 

1. Pastry crust: Place butter pieces in freezer 20 minutes or until semi-frozen. In food processor, pulse flour, confectioners’ sugar and salt until blended. Add frozen butter; pulse about 15 times or until mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs. Sprinkle 3 Tbsp water over mixture and pulse until dough just comes together. Remove from food processor; with floured hands, gather into a ball, flatten into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 30 minutes.

2. Flour a sheet of parchment paper; roll out dough into a 12-in. round. Slide dough on parchment onto a baking sheet; refrigerate while preparing filling. Heat oven to 375°F.

*note* – If you are short on time, you can skip steps 1 and 2 if you choose to use the frozen rolled pastry dough!

3. Filling:

Halve 1⁄2 lb of the berries (see photo at left) and reserve. In a medium bowl, toss 1⁄4 cup sugar, cornstarch and lemon zest until blended; add quartered berries and butter, and toss to coat. Remove dough from refrigerator. Pile berry mixture in an even mound in center of dough within 2 in. of dough edge. Gently fold the edges over so the edge folds on top of the strawberry mixture and brush dough / crust with the beaten egg mixture to make the crust a nice golden brown while baking.  

4. Bake 40 minutes, or until crust is golden and filling is juicy. Remove from oven; slide parchment onto a cooling rack. Let cool 15 minutes.

*note* – the precooked tarte can and will look more “beautiful”, although post-baked taste is not at all compromised.  One thing you can do (I chose not to in my photo) is save some extra sliced strawberries and add them to the top of the tarte when finished before serving.  This will make the tarte look glossier.

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3 Responses to Ooh la la, Tarte aux fraises!

  1. monet says:

    looks yummy! I am inspired to make one with my little ones. thanks, Jaimi!

  2. Siobhan says:

    jaimi, thanks for sharing! have you tried this with frozen berries? I’ve got a few bags left from summer pickings … wonder if it would work?

  3. jaimigadaix says:

    Monet – the kids will love it!
    Siobhan – I’ve never tried it with frozen berries, but my mom has. I works just as well, but I would thaw and drain the berries in a colander for an hour or two first (without squishing the berries, try to get liquid out of the mix). Also, you can add a bit of almond paste under the berries (on top of the crust) for that awesome nutty flavor too.

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