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Sunday, May 17, 2009

Strawberry Glacé Tart

Saturday was a day of passage and celebration in our home. It was Bob's 70th birthday. Now you don't serve just anything for an event that marks seven decades. There has to be a little pomp, a little circumstance, a meal with an air of celebration about it. We put our heads together, he and I, and came up with a feast. Bob picked the desserts. Over the next week or so I'll post them all, but I thought it would be nice to start with his first choice and the one that is still his favorite. It's an old-fashioned strawberry tart. Luscious berries are artfully, or semi-artfully, arranged in a buttery almond crust and then glazed. No custard. No whipped cream. Just naked berries clad in crimson. It's beautiful to look it and simple to do. A caution or two for those who plan to make this. It's a seasonal dessert. Make sure the berries you use are fully ripe and flavorful. It's also important to glaze the berries about two hours before you plan to serve the dessert. After a couple of hours the glaze will begin to water out and your gorgeous tart will begin to look like the portrait of Dorian Gray. I love this dessert for its simplicity and old-fashioned goodness.

Strawberry Glacé Tart


Sweet Pastry Dough:
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut in 1/2-inch dice
1 large egg yold
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1-1/2 tablespoons ice cold water + additional water as needed

8 cups strawberries, washed and stemmed
2/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 to 3 drops red food coloring (optional)

1) Place flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Beat egg, almond extract and water together in a small bowl. Pour into flour and pulse. Remove from bowl. Add additional water as required to make a ball. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
2) Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. On lightly floured surface roll dough into a 10-inch circle. Fit into a 9-inch tart pan with removable sides. Prick bottom and sides of crust. Line with foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil and bake until golden, about 5 to 6 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
3) Place 1 cup strawberries in a blender jar or bowl of a food processor. Add 2/3 cup water. Blend or process until smooth. Pour into a two cup measure. Add additional water as required to make 1-1/2 cups of mixture. Place sugar and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Stir in berry mixture. Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from heat. Add food coloring, if using. Let sit for 10 minutes without stirring.
4) Spread 1/4 cup of glaze over bottom of tart shell. Arrange remainder of berries, stem side down, in pastry shell. Spoon remaining glaze over berries, making sure each berry is covered with glaze. Chill for 1 to 2 hours before serving. Yield: 8 servings.


Katy ~ said...

Your beloved is handsome! I think your two oldest grandsons have his eyes.

Oh. my. goodness. The tart is absolutely, positively gorgeous. I would be so proud to serve that.

I am so going to make this!

My Carolina Kitchen said...

First of all Happy Birthday Bob for the 20th anniversary of your 50th birthday. Hope you plan to celebrate for at least a week - that's what we do at our house. Hope you have many, many more.

That tart is to die for - fabulous photo. I could eat the entire thing all by myself.

Donna-FFW said...

MARY! This is undeniably the MOST gorgeous tart I have seen in blogdom recently. It is beautiful. No wonder its a favorite. I cant even imagine how delicious it must be. Cant wait to see all your other desserts.. Oh and Happy Birthday Bob!

Susan said...

A very special happy birthday to Bob! What a very handsome man!! And the strawberry tart--what can one say! Looks so good! Anxious for your other photos.

Ginger said...


Happy Birthday to BOB!! Does he know how lucky he is to have you and all your cooking and baking talent??? The Strawberry Glace Tart (almost) looks to good to eat. Wonderful photos.

Chow and Chatter said...

lovely dessert, could be from a bakery in France happy birthday to your dear hubby have a wonderful day together

Selba said...

Happy Birthday to Bob!

He really made a great decision of picking the desserts. It looks so scrumptious :)

Penny said...

Mary, Happy Birthday to Bob - such a distinguished looking man. The strawberry tart is very beautiful! Can hardly wait to see the rest of the dishes you are preparing. I have that very tart pan by the way - think I will make this.

Patricia said...

Mary, this tart is absolutely gorgeous!

girlichef said...

What a gorgeous dessert for this special day! I would love to make this before the end of strawberry season. Your hubby is very handsome :)

Mary said...

Patricia, thank you for the compliment and for visiting my blog. I hope you'll join us more often.

noble pig said...

Mary such a beautiful tart for a very important Birthday indeed! I can't wait to see them all! Your hubby is cute too!

Cathy said...

A huge happy birthday wish to your handsome hubby, Mary. What a great reason to celebrate.

Your strawberry tart is to yummy for words. The best dessert ever.

Natashya said...

Looks stunning! Your sweetie chose wisely. Birthday hugs from up here in Canada. :)

Karen said...

Happy Birthday, Bob! You chose a delicious looking dessert!

the ungourmet said...

Happy Birthday Bob! I sounds like your celebration was memorable and filled with lots of delectable treats!

This Tart looks very beautiful and delicious!

Mary, you are so talented. Everything on your blog looks wonderful! I am sure your husband just can't get enough of your yummy creations!

haleysuzanne said...

That tart is gorgeous. I love the color in the picture. When I was small, my grandmother made a strawberry pie with a shortbread crust very similar to this - such a good memory. Sounds like a good reason to make it!

The Cooking Photographer said...

Mary, I always run to your blog as soon as I see a new post. This is another lovely recipe I'll cherish.

Happy Birthday wishes to your husband Bob!


Cindy Khor said...

such a lovely looking dessert!!! maybe i'm gonna try it... happy birthday to your beloved.

Koruklu said...

What a beautiful dessert!!! Strawberries always looks so great!!!

Lori said...

My Dad's 80 th is in a few days. I am catering the big shabang here. Ought to be lots of fun. I love tarts in the summer filled with fresh fruits. Nothing beats them, not even chocolate. So funny, I havent seen Dorian Gray in so many years. Most people dont know about that movie.

Wish your lovey Happy Birthday to me- he sure has a gem of a wife!

Jennifer said...

Beautiful! This makes me want to get my sick buns out of bed, get some strawberries make me a tart. Happy Bday wishes

Meg said...

Happy Birthday to Bob! What a lovely tart!

Lynda said...

What a gorgeous tart! I've not seen a prettier one anywhere, or a more delicous looking one. Fresh strawberries are one of my favorite foods!
Happy Birthday Bob!

Martha said...

Mary -- Happy Birthday to Bob and what a great treat for a special day. It's a favorite of us at Linderhof as well -- but only during strawberry season. I've not tried the almond pastry, preferring a regular pastry. I think the almond would gild the lily a bit and take the dessert over the top!

Mariana said...

A very special milestone; congrats to Bob. How very fortunate for him that he has a marvellous caterer to help him with the celebrations.
Mary your tart looks so luscious. Congrats to you too.

Kathy said...

Looks delish!!! Big Birthday wishes to Bob from the Lone Star State!!!

My Little Space said...

Mary, this is your handsome prince! You should show more photos of you both. Or your wedding photo perhaps?

Sara said...

What a simple and beautiful tart. I bet it was equally as delicious.

Amongst The Oaks said...

I just love tarts! They seem so much fancier than pie, aren't any more trouble, and just seem so fresh and perfect for summer. My family particularly likes blueberries on a lemon cream base. Thanks for sharing.

Wandering Chopsticks said...

Happy Birthday to Bob! You two make a lovely couple.

Julie said...

The tart is just beautiful...what a great way to celebrate a very special day :)

Mary said...

Julie, thanks so much for the compliment. I hope you'll visit us on a regular basis. You're always welcome here.

darien said...

hello...I wanted to thank you for this recipe. It's the first time EVER that I made good pastry, nice and flaky--and I'm almost 50!

However, i had a problem with the glaze, and I ws wondering if you could help me figure out what it is. My glaze was not shiny and clear like yours, but rather cloudy. I'm pretty sure I measured correctly. It didn't seem to affect the taste, but it does not look as lovely as yours.

I'm still okay with that--it tasted great. But i'd like to figure out what my mistake was so that next time, I can have a shiny tart like yours. Thanks!

Also, if you don't mind, i'm going to link your recipe to my fledgling food blog.

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