Strawberry Tart

It’s the Chinese New Year season, and people tend to stick by tradition. It’s the time for mandarin oranges and all things festive. Strawberries, however, are neglected by the ol’ stick-in-the-muds. I, for one, couldn’t care less about tradition. Even more so, I can never resist a good bargain. That said, I absolutely love strawberries. For one, the seeds are edible. While it may be fun to spit the seeds of a watermelon at your brother, eating fruits with seeds a plenty some times gets to me.
Prebaked Tart Shell
by David Lebovitz, Ready for Dessert
makes one 9 inch or 23 cm tart shell
What a wonderful dessert this is to have. Crumbly, yet sturdy enough to hold billows of pastry cream and fresh fruit. This will be loved by cookie lovers and haters alike, although I wonder, who in the right mind would hate cookies?
6 tbsp (85g) unsalted butter, r.t. 
1/4 C sugar or brown sugar (which I used. However, use those in ‘loose’ form.) 
1 large egg yolk
1 C (140g) AP flour
1/8 tsp sea salt
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar on low speed until just smooth, about 1 minute. Add the egg yolk and mix for 30 secs on low speed. Add the flour and salt, and mix just until the dough comes together in a smooth, homogeneous mass. Do not overmix. Pinch off a jellybean sized piece of dough, wrap it in plastic and set aside.
Place the remaining dough in the center of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom (I used a pyrex pie dish and it served me right). Use the heel of your hand to press the dough evenly across the bottom of the pan; try to get the dough as smooth as possible. Use your fingers to press the dough up the sides and to the rim. Make sure the dough isn’t too thick at the corners.
Freeze the dough-lined tart pan until the dough is firm, at least an hour.
Preheat the oven to 375F (190C).
Set the tart pan on a baking sheet, and prick the frozen dough about 10 times with a fork. Bake the shell for 7 mins, then check if the bottom has puffed up. If it has, gently press it down with the back of a spoon. Continue baking until deep golden brown, 15 to 20 mins more.
Remove from the oven. While the tart shell is hot, if there are any large fissures, pinch of small pieces of the reserved unbaked dough, and smooth them into the cracks till filled. There’s no need to bake longer as the heat from the still-warmed shell will firm it up.
Storage: Dough can be frozen for 1 month. It needs to be used the day it is prebaked, so don’t bake it until you need it.

3 thoughts on “Strawberry Tart

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