This strawberry rhubarb tart is the perfect dessert for summer! It’s sweet shortbread cookie-like crust pairs perfect with the cool creamy filling and the tart sweet combination of strawberries and rhubarb sauce is heavenly.
I love tarts. They are like pies…..but better. Achieving the perfect pie crust has never been my specialty and to be honest I don’t even really like pie crust so the tart is in my opinion the perfect mode of delivery.
Kevin however loves pies with a passion…..in particular strawberry rhubarb pies. Which is unfortunate because we live in the south now….where rhubarb doesn’t grow and the stores do not stock. In our little town the act of asking for rhubarb in the produce section elicits odd stares and the occasional promise to order some which never results in anything but crushed hopes.
But several months ago I found some rhubarb crowns at Tractor Supply and have managed to grow this little beauty in our side yard:
Hopefully she will make it through the winter and give us a big harvest next year. Unfortunately you aren’t supposed to eat the stalks until year two for fear of stressing the plant to death. Which means we still had no rhubarb….
But we had a baby!
Which means we had parents flying and driving in from the west coast. The land of plentiful rhubarb. Kevin’s mom packed her suitcase full of bags of frozen rhubarb and proudly presented Kevin with 11 bags of the glorious red stalks.
Since it was Kevin’s birthday on Monday and he had already cooked his entire birthday dinner himself, I decided to stay home from church and surprise him with a special tart. It was a total success!
I decided that rather than cooking the strawberries with the rhubarb that it would be a nice fresh twist to make a tangy rhubarb coulis and leave the strawberries fresh.
I used the pastry cream recipe from Tartlette and was quite pleased with it.
After everything is cooled and your strawberries are sliced, it is as simple as pouring the filling into the tart shell and topping with the strawberries and sauce. I used a sandwhich baggie with the corner snipped off to drizzle the sauce on the tart easily.
Serve with extra rhubarb sauce on the side!
- Rhubarb sauce:
- 1 lb of frozen rhubarb, chopped into ½ inch pieces
- 1 cup water
- ⅔ cup sugar
- For custard:
- 4 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 3 cups half-and-half, divided
- 6 large egg yolks
- 2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1½ cups heavy cream
- For Crust:
- 2½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup cornmeal
- 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (2 stick) unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
- 6 tablespoons ice water
- 2 large egg yolks
- Place rhubarb in a saucepan with water and sugar and bring to a boil.
- Simmer until thickened, about 50 minutes.
- Pulse in blender or food processor until pureed.
- For filling:
- Whisk cornstarch, sugar, and egg yolks. Slowly add in ½ cup of the half-and-half and whisk until smooth.
- Heat remaining half and half to almost boiling over medium heat.
- Gently whisk the hot half and half over the egg yolk/cornstarch mixture whisking quickly to prevent the eggs from scrambling.
- Return mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens to a custard, about 5 minutes. You must whisk constantly to prevent burning and curdling.
- If it does curdle whisk aggressively and run it through a fine mesh strainer to remove any bits of scrambled egg.
- Once removed from the heat source, add vanilla and store in a bowl with plastic wrap pressed to the surface of the custard. Allow to cool to room temperature and then move to the refrigerator.
- When fully chilled whisk the heavy cream to whipped cream consistency (stiff peaks) and gently fold the whipped cream into the custard.
- For Crust:
- Combine flour, cornmeal, granulated sugar, and salt.
- Add the cold butter cubes, then using a pastry cutter or your fingers, quickly break the butter up in the dry ingredients. You are aiming for the size of a small pea or a bit larger.
- Work quickly. Once finished rest in the fridge for several minutes.
- In a small bowl whisk together water and egg yolk.
- Remove the mixture from the fridge, add the wet ingredients all at once to the dry ingredients. Use a fork to combine. It will feel like there’s not enough wet ingredients. But it will come together, just keep going.
- Sprinkle lightly with flour, form into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap.
- Refrigerate dough for 1 hour. This will allow the moisture to distribute. Crust can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours.
- When ready to roll out, unwrap the dough into tart or pie pan. Press out with fingers working quickly to not warm the butter too much. onto a lightly floured work surface. Using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to an 11-inch circle. If the dough starts to break up or tear as you’re rolling it, don’t panic. Simple place the dough into the tart pan and use your fingers to press it along the bottom, sides and edges.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Place in fridge for twenty minutes while the oven preheats.
- Line the unbaked crust with a sheet of foil or parchment paper covering all sides. Fill the pan with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake for another 15 minutes. Remove the foil and beans from the pan and bake for another 6 minutes, or until the bottom crust looks dry and the shell is a very pale golden color. Remove the pie from the oven and let the shell cool completely before filling.
- Assembly: Add filling to crust. Top with strawberries and drizzle with rhubarb sauce