Hola! It's been a little while, hopefully I won't miss posting every week again! I'm still preparing my "travel tips" post, so today I'm sharing a recipe I made last week, it's perfect for a refreshing treat, tea time or for breakfast, as I usually eat from time to time to remind myself I'm adult and I can eat cake or cold pizza for breakfast just because I can. It is a very versatile recipe since you can easily adjust sweetness and add whatever fruit is in season or you have at hand, fresh or frozen. So, here goes:
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 8 tbsp butter
- 1 1/2 tbsp sugar (I used brown)
- 1 egg
- Pinch of salt
- 1 (8oz) package cream cheese
- 1/4+ cup sugar AND/OR honey (until desired sweetness)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Fruits (fresh or thawed)
- 3 tbsp (3 packets) unflavored gelatin
- 1/2 cup water (divided in two 1/4 cup bowls)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- Orange zest (or any citric)
- FOR THE CRUST: All ingredients must be cold, so chop the cold butter into small pieces and combine it with the flour, sugar and salt. You can do this by hand or in a food processor (just don't over mix it). You should end up with a lumpy mix, then it's time to add the egg. Mix well and check the consistency: if it's too dry, add a tablespoon of cold water; if it's too sticky, add a bit of flour. When the dough comes together, form a ball and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, you can do this days before and it'll harden nicely.
- Take the dough out and use a rolling pin to stretch it the size of your tart pan, you can have it thin or thick, it depends on your taste. Use the rolling pin to transfer the rolled dough into the pan and fit it nicely, you can cut out the excess.
- Using a fork, pierce small holes on the dough so air is released easily while baking.
- Bake on a preheated oven to 350°F (180°C) for 30 minutes, or until you get browned edges.
- Let the crust cool out of the oven while you prepare the filling and toppings.
- FOR FILLING: In a bowl, beat the room temperature cream cheese with the vanilla extract and a little bit of the sugar or honey. When it fluffs a little bit, add the remaining sweetener and keep beating until you get a soft filling with your desired sweetness. Place in the fridge until the crust is completely cool.
- FOR TOPPING: In a small bowl, add the gelatin to 1/4 cup of water, let it sit for at least 5 minutes until it becomes thick.
- In a small saucepan over low heat, mix the remaining 1/4 cup of water, sugar and orange zest. Mix until sugar is dissolved, then remove from heat.
- While the saucepan is still warm, add the gelatin mixture and dissolve completely.
- When the tart crust is cool, add the filling and top it with your fruit of choice. Brush the fruits with the gelatin topping. If the topping hardens before you can brush it, microwave it for a few seconds until it dissolves again. TIP: the gelatin topping helps prevent fruit wilting, but it's still best to chop fruits and top the tart the day you decide to serve it (an hour before if possible).
I used figs and raspberries on my tart, and to keep figs from getting mushy too fast I baked them for about 15 minutes in a cookie sheet before applying the gelatin topping. It lasted 3 days in my fridge with no problem, the fruits were beautiful as the day I baked the tart. Maybe it can last a couple more days but we ate it all. If you have very sweet fruits (like figs, in my case) I recommend keeping the cream cheese to a minimum sweetness, I only used honey and no sugar in mine, and the contrast was truly delicious!
Happy baking everyone!