I love farmers' markets. They are the best way to buy the freshest fruits and vegetables as well as support our local growers. I also love making desserts. So, I combined those two passions this week and made two fruit tarts using a combination of fruit that I picked at my local market. The great thing about this recipe is that you can use whatever appeals to you at your market the day you go shopping. Whether it's blueberries, blackberries, peaches or nectarines, any combination of fresh fruit will make this a sweet dessert.
Fresh Fruit Tart
Ingredients for two 8" tarts*
1 1/4 cu Cinnamon Graham Crackers, about 10-11 crackers
3/4 cu Powdered Sugar
1 1/4 cu Flour
1/2 cu Butter, melted
8 oz cu Cream Cheese, softened at room temperature
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/2 cu Sour Cream
Zest of 1 Lemon
3-4 cups of fresh fruit, whole (like blueberries and raspberries) or sliced (like peaches or nectarines)
Powdered Sugar for light dusting
1/2 cu Apricot Preserves, or jam
1 tbl Water
Fresh Mint for garnish
two 8" Fluted Tart Pans with removable bottoms*
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grind graham crackers into crumbs using a food processor (you can also put them in a sealable container and use the side or bottom of a can to crush them). Place crumbs in a bowl and mix in 1/4 cup powdered sugar and the flour. Add butter and 2 oz of cream cheese. Mix ingredients together with your hands to fully combine. Divide mixture between the two tart pans. Press mixture into the sides and bottom being sure to fill in the fluted areas. Place tart pans onto a cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes or until crusts are golden brown. Remove from oven and let them cool completely.
In a large bowl, blend together remaining cream cheese and 1/2 cu powdered sugar using a hand mixer on medium speed. Mix until smooth and then add vanilla extract and sour cream. Divide filling among the tarts and spread out smoothly.
Place apricot preserves in a small pan with water and bring to a boil. Stir until lumps dissolve. Remove from heat and strain out any remaining thick pieces. Set aside and allow mixture to cool to room temperature.
Arrange the fresh fruit on top of the cream cheese mixture. You can make a pattern of concentric circles with different fruit or chop all the the fruit up and simply spread it evenly on the surface. Lightly brush top surface of fruit with the apricot glaze. Place tarts in the refrigerate until ready to serve.
Just before serving, sprinkle the tarts with powdered sugar and top with lemon zest and mint.
*Special Note: the ingredients for this recipe will yield two 8" tarts, six 4" individual tarts or one 11" tart. The amount of fruit is approximate and can vary deepening on the type of fruit you choose and how you prepare it (like thickness of slices, etc.).