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Easy Fruit Tart Recipe & Video

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This Easy Fruit Tart has a buttery crisp shortbread crust, and the filling is simply a beaten mixture of heavy cream and mascarpone cheese. The crowning touch is the fruit, and you can arrange the fruit in concentric circles or rows, or to make things "easy", you can just pile the fruit randomly on top of the cream.

Unlike the Classic Fruit Tart that uses a Sweet Pastry Crust, this tart uses a pre-baked shortbread crust, which does taste like a shortbread cookie. It is so easy to prepare. Just give the ingredients a quick whirl in your food processor until the pastry starts to form clumps. Then simply press the pastry into your tart pan. Place the crust in the freezer while you preheat your oven, and then bake the crust until golden brown.

While the classic filling for fruit tarts may be a pastry cream, I decided to use an uncooked filling made by beating mascarpone cheese with heavy whipping cream, a little sugar and vanilla extract. It is lovely; velvety smooth and so creamy. Mascarpone cheese is an ivory colored soft cheese that is thick and velvety, with a sweet and buttery rich flavor. It is produced from cow's milk and has a texture similar to cream cheese. In fact, you can use regular cream cheese instead of Mascarpone in this recipe. Mascarpone Cheese is typically sold in plastic eight ounce (250 gram) tubs and can be found in specialty food stores and in the deli section of some grocery stores. Once the filling is spread onto the baked and cooled shortbread crust, garnish the tart with fresh fruit. While I have used fresh berries, you could use slices of kiwi, pineapple, banana, melon, plums, mango, nectarines, or peaches.

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Shortbread Crust: Butter, or lightly spray with a nonstick vegetable cooking spray, a 9 inch (23 cm) tart pan with a removable bottom. 

In your food processor, place the flour, sugar, and salt and process to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the pastry starts to come together and form clumps. Place the pastry in the prepared tart pan and, using your fingertips, evenly press the pastry onto the bottom and up the sides of the pan. (Can use the back of a spoon to smooth the surface of the pastry.) Prick the bottom of the crust with the tines of a fork. (This will prevent the pastry crust from puffing up while it bakes.) Cover and place the pastry crust in the freezer for about 15 minutes to chill. (This will help prevent the crust from shrinking while it bakes.)

Meanwhile preheat your oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. 

Place the tart pan on a larger baking sheet and bake until the crust is golden brown, about 13 - 15 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely. If not using right away, the crust can be covered and stored for a few days.

Cream Filling: In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer or wire whisk) beat the mascarpone cheese, heavy whipping cream, sugar and vanilla extract just until soft peaks form. 

To Assemble Tart: Evenly spread the cream filling onto the baked and cooled tart shell. Scatter the fruit on top of the cream. If not serving immediately, refrigerate. Can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days.

Serves about 6 - 8 people.

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Shortbread Crust:

1 cup (130 grams) all purpose flour

1/3 cup (35 grams) confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (113 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Cream Filling:

1/2 cup (125 grams) cold mascarpone cheese (or cream cheese)

1/2 cup (120 grams) cold heavy whipping cream (35-40% butterfat content)

2 tablespoons (30 grams) granulated white sugar, or to taste

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) pure vanilla extract


3 cups (1 pound) (450 grams) fruit (raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi fruit, bananas, plums, peaches, pineapple, melon, etc.)

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