With its rich pastry cream and tangy fruit wrapped in a flaky, buttery shell, the fruit tart is a classic dessert. Make this version with one or more of your favorites berries.
Step 1: Make crust Mix the flour, salt, shortening, and butter in the food processor for 2 seconds to form fine crumbs. Add the ice water and process for 2 more seconds. Remove the dough, shape it into a ball, and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
TIP: You can also use your own favorite piecrust recipe or buy a pre-made, 9-inch piecrust.
Step 2: Roll Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Roll the dough to an 11-inch round and ease it into the tart pan. Fold the overhang in and press it against the side of the tart pan to form a rim above the pan edge. Line the shell with foil and fill it with dry beans or uncooked rice to weigh it down.
TIP: If you're chilling the pastry overnight, let it stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before rolling.
Step 3: Bake Bake the crust for 15 minutes, remove the foil and weights, and bake for 7 to 12 minutes longer, until golden. Then let it cool completely on the rack.
Step 4: Start pastry cream Heat the milk in your saucepan over medium-high heat to boiling. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Whisk in the cornstarch and then slowly whisk the hot milk into the yolk mixture.
Step 5: Cook cream Return the milk and yolk mixture to the saucepan, whisking constantly, until it's thick and boiling. Reduce the heat to low, still whisking, for 2 minutes. Then remove it from the heat and stir in the liqueur and vanilla.
Step 6: Chill Pour the pastry cream into a clean bowl and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over the surface to prevent skin from forming. Chill at least 2 hours until it's cold.
Step 7: Assemble Remove the side of the tart pan. Whisk the pastry cream until smooth, and spread it in the shell. Arrange your berries on top and dab it with heated apricot jam. Finish with a light dusting of confectioners sugar and serve within 1 day.
FACT: The classic tarte tatin was named after the Tatin sisters, French innkeepers, who forgot the crust before they put in the apples and started baking. They decided to put the crust on top and serve the tart upside down.