My goodness, I think these were the best entries yet! The care in presentation was definitely apparent, and it was a treat to see everyone's inner pastry chef come through. I would pay big bucks for any of those tarts at a patisserie.
I have to choose 2 winners, but before that, special notes go to:
Alison T - you really impressed yourself - well-deserved!
Colleen & Marie S - who made making these tarts a family affair
Katie P - who also has found that having a little one at home is a great time for connecting with baking
Esther C - great Dragon fruit carving!
Julia P - lovely raspberry rectangle tarts - you certainly have an appreciative audience
Nicole B - I know exactly what you're feeling, having ditched a banking career for professional cooking. Embrace every delicious moment of your stage in France (you won't be sleeping much, though)
Sandy T - for recovering from over-baked pastry shells to that beautiful final result
And now for the winners...
First place: Maureen R. Your individual adaption of the recipe looks stunning, and I can tell that time and thought went into the fruit composition. I can tell that the pastry was beaustifully done, and your story is lovely. Thanks so much for sharing this!
Second place: Angelina L. - what a stunning photo, and I like how you integrated the specialty fruit of your home country, Philippines. Having been there (Manila & Pampanga) 3 times, I can attest to how good the mangoes are. Your tart is gorgeous and I can tell is was "MASARAP" (for those who don't speak Tagalog, that translates to "delicious").
SUMMER FRUIT FLAN
Any summer fruit make this a classic showstopper dessert.
Makes 1 9-inch tart
Serves 8 to 10
½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
¼ cup sugar
2 egg yolks
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp salt
2 oz white chocolate, chopped
1 cup milk
¼ cup sugar
2 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
4 cups seasonal summer fruits, such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries, apricots or peaches, in any combination
3 Tbsp apple jelly
1. Beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy. Stir in the egg yolks and vanilla. Stir in the flour and salt until the dough comes together. Shape the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours, until firm.
2. Preheat the oven to 350F. Knead the pastry dough on a lightly floured surface to soften enough that it can be easily rolled. Dust the pastry a little and roll it out to just over 11-inches in diameters and just under a ¼-inch thick. Line a 9-inch removable-bottom fluted tart pan and trim the edges. Chill the pastry for 20 minutes in the fridge, or 10 minutes in the freezer.
3. Dock the bottom of the pastry shell with a fork and bake it for 16 to 20 minutes, until just the edges are golden brown and the centre of the shell is dry looking. Cool completely before filling.
4. Keep the baked tart shell in its pan. Melt the white chocolate in a bowl placed over a pot of barely simmering water, stirring until melted. Brush the bottom and sides of the cooled tart shell to coat and chill the shell while preparing the pastry cream.
5. Heat the milk in a heavy-bottomed saucepot until just below a simmer. Whisk the eggs, sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Whisk half of the hot milk into the egg mixture, then pour this entire mixture back into the pot with the remaining milk. Whisk the custard constantly over medium heat until it thickens and just begins to bubble, about 3 to 4 minutes. Strain the custard into a bowl, stir in the vanilla and butter until melted and then cover the bowl with plastic wrap so that the wrap directly covers the surface of the custard. Cool the custard to room temperature, then chill it for at least 2 hours.
6. To assemble the tart, spoon the custard into the tart shell and spread it evenly. Top the custard with the fresh fruit, creating an appealing design. Melt the apple jelly over low heat, and then brush it over the fruit. Chill the tart until you are ready to serve.
The tart can be stored chilled for up to a day.
Professionally trained pastry chef Anna Olson is the host of Food Network's Bake with Anna Olson. Anna’s culinary philosophy is based on a common-sense approach of cooking and baking with the seasons, as well as respecting the ingredients, the technique and the process of sharing with others through food. Most of all, cooking and baking should be fun!