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European or French strawberry tart with vanilla bean custard and a shortbread crust. | ethnicspoon.com
5 from 13 votes
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Strawberry Tart Recipe Card

Strawberry Tart with a creamy custard is an irresistible combination.  The simplicity of the shortbread crust combined with the delicious sweetness of vanilla custard and fresh juicy strawberries is the absolute highlight of my summer. Soaking the berries in a little Grand Marnier and sugar makes a tasty syrup to drizzle on the finished slices.  So good! 

Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Keyword baking, custard, fruit tart, shortbread crust, strawberry tart, syrup
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Custard Set Time 20 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings: Change to adjust-> 8 servings
Calories 371 kcal

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 oz butter cold, cut into pieces
  • 2 Tbsp sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp sugar

Vanilla Custard

  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean split lengthwise
  • 2 Tbsp flour

Strawberries and syrup

  • 16 oz strawberries hulled and halved
  • 2 Tbsp Grand Marnier
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Instructions

  1. For the crust place all crust ingredients in a food processor and process until it looks like like cornmeal. Press into a tart pan and bake for about 15 minutes until golden brown at 375°F See notes below for tips.

  2. Place the hulled and halved strawberries in a bowl. Sprinkle them with sugar and pour over the Grand Marnier. Toss them around a bit so they are fully coated. Allow them to marinate for about 30-45 minutes. Strain and reserve the juice.

  3. To make the custard place milk and vanilla bean in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Scrape the pulp from the bean and add to the milk. Discard the bean pod.

  4. In a bowl whisk egg yolks and sugar until combined. Add flour and mix well.
  5. Slowly whisk in the milk mixture a little at a time to temper into the egg-sugar mixture. Once half of the milk had been added to the egg-sugar mixture whisk the eggs into the saucepan.

  6. Return the sauce pan and cook for about 10 minutes on medium heat until mixture begins to thicken. Whisk continuously while it thickens.

  7. To assemble the tart evenly spread custard on bottom of crust. Chill the filled shell in the refrigerator for 20 minutes until set. Place individual strawberry halves on top of custard. Serve individual pieces with a drizzle of the reserved syrup.

Recipe Notes

  • When I have combined the ingredients for the short crust I drop the shortbread meal right into the 10 inch tart pan and level it out with a chop stick or popsicle stick.  This gives me an even layer across the bottom and lets me build up the sides thicker. I draw the stick across the bottom and deposit the extra meal around the sides. (We all love the thick rippled edge with a nice crunch!)
  • I then take a flat bottomed water glass and gently tamp down the crust to pack it tight and I usually work the edges with my fingers.  Best sure to pack it tight so it is not crumbly after baking.
  • Note: Do not pour syrup over the tart until you are ready to eat it. Better yet, only pour juice on the individual servings. And, by all means, don't throw away the Strawberry Grand Marnier syrup, pour some on your pancakes or waffles! It is oh so yummy.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Can I freeze the tart shell and make the tart later? Yes, once the tart shell has completely cooled you can freeze for up to 2 months.
  • Can I make this tart ahead? Do not construct the tart until you are ready to serve or a few hours before serving. You can make the tart shell ahead, bake and freeze for up to 2 months once cooled. The custard filling can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The custard does not freeze well so avoid that. The strawberries need to be cut up and placed on the tart while fresh.
  • How long can I keep the finished strawberry tart in the refrigerator? It is best to eat this tart fresh after it is constructed. It will last for 1-2 days in the refrigerator but the crust will start to get softer. I usually try to serve within 5-6 hours of constructing the tart and leave it to chill in the refrigerator.
  • Do I have to let the tart shell cool before adding the custard filling? Yes, is it best to allow it to completely cool. Chilling the filled tart it in the refrigerator will help the cream set before adding the strawberries
  • Can I remove the shell from the pan and fill? No, leave the tart shell in the tart pan while you construct the tart. Use a tart pan with a removable bottom disc and leave it in the pan until you are ready to serve. Pop it out of the pan and place it on a platter leaving the bottom pan disc in place when you serve.
  • Why did my tart dough turn into a ball? You likely over mixed the dough in the food processor. Be sure to stop pulsing the dough mixture as soon as it looks like a granular fine meal.
Nutrition Facts
Strawberry Tart Recipe Card
Amount Per Serving
Calories 371 Calories from Fat 162
% Daily Value*
Fat 18g28%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Cholesterol 183mg61%
Sodium 131mg6%
Potassium 183mg5%
Carbohydrates 46g15%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 28g31%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 650IU13%
Vitamin C 33.3mg40%
Calcium 88mg9%
Iron 1.6mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.