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Closeup of classic fruit tart

Classic Fruit Tart with Pastry Cream

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Pastry chef Leah Kuo breaks down the steps of creating a classic, French fruit tart. This is the perfect dessert to "wow" at the end of a dinner party orromantic meal. 
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Dish Type tart
Cooking Style Baking
Seasonal Easter, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day
Ingredient pastry cream, Strawberries
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Servings 1 tart
Author Leah Kuo


For the pastry:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter very cold
  • 3 to 4 tbsp ice water

For the pastry cream:

  • 8 tbsp sugar
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter cold
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

For the glaze:

  • 1/2 cup apricot jelly
  • 1 tbsp water


  • Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, kiwi, sliced peaches and plums, cherries, champagne grapes


To make the pastry:

  • To make the pastry combine flour, sugar and salt and place in the freezer for an hour.
  • Cut the cold butter into 1/2 inch pieces.
  • Put flour mixture in the bowl of a food processor, add butter and pulse until butter forms small balls.
  • Add ice water and process until dough comes together.
  • Form into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 to 45 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • On a floured surface roll dough into 1/8 inch thick circle, large enough to hang slightly over the sides of a 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom.
  • Cut off excess dough with a sharp knife.
  • Line shell with aluminum foil, then fill with dried beans or pie weights.
  • Bake 10 minutes.
  • Remove beans and foil; prick bottom of the shell with a fork to allow steam to escape.
  • Bake another 20 minutes until browned.
  • Cool to room temperature.

For the pastry cream:

  • To make the pastry cream, scald the milk and 4 tablespoons sugar.
  • Whisk the egg, yolks, cornstarch and remainder of sugar until pale yellow and reaches the ribbon stage. (When a spoonful of the mixture pours out in a solid ribbon.)
  • Temper the milk into the eggs. (This means add it slowly while whisking to ensure the hot milk doesn't scramble the eggs.) Once it is tempered, thicken over medium low heat.
  • Once thickened, remove from heat and add vanilla extract and butter.
  • Place in a large bowl and cover with piece of plastic wrap laid directly on the surface of the cream to prevent a skin from forming.
  • Refrigerate until completely cool.

For the glaze:

  • To make the glaze, melt the jelly and water in a small saucepan until combined and smooth.

To assemble the tart:

  • Spread pastry cream on the bottom of the shell.
  • Artistically arrange the fruit over the cream.
  • Brush glaze over the fruit.
  • Serve and enjoy!