This post is an entry in the Zespri Kiwi A-Go-Go contest.
As you may have noticed, or not, I haven’t posted in over a week and that has left my fabulous Blueberry Pie Martini recipe front and center in my absence. While I don’t believe most of you care what my excuse reason is for all of this, here it is anyway in a nutshell (notice that food reference there). I experienced a bit of a compatibility issue with the look of my site and the technology running it – that’s why it looks a bit different now (in terms of relationships: my old theme got comfortable and stopped putting out so I traded her in for a younger model that puts out like a slutty college co-ed). Then I went to a food blogger conference (quit laughing…I really did and yes, they do have these things. If someone can make $ on it…it will be done.) so I was gone for a few days. Well, I’m back bitches and ready to rock and roll! Time to get fruity.
Fresh fruit tarts are a great dessert. A fruit tart is an easy dessert recipe that can be changed up based on the kinds of fruit, and chocolate (yes, I said chocolate), you like and what’s in season. But a fruit tart is also a lot like a mullet (you know, that hair “style” that’s all business in the front and a party in the back). Or maybe a fruit tart is like what you get when you invite Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson to the Emmy’s. You expect to get Tom Hanks, all prim and proper with a well put together look (fresh fruit arranged artistically and glazed to perfection).
Then you bite into the tart and get a bit of a Rita Wilson surprise (WTF is she wearing? She looks like something from the Whoville Christmas parade while wearing Cherry Toppers’ lucite stripper shoes draped in Christmas lights) with a sliver of white chocolate that melds magically with a crisp and tangy lemon flavored crust. You just don’t see that coming when you look at that artfully decorated fresh fruit tart.
I realize that easy dessert recipes, that aren’t cookies or brownies, are pretty hard to come by…that’s another reason why I made this fruit tart and think that you should definitely add this to your recipe box. I used white chocolate with this one because I like the subtle flavor that it has and how it combines with the blueberries and kiwi, doesn’t compete with them. But you can also use dark chocolate with these fruits or use dark chocolate with strawberries, mandarin oranges or blueberries.
Unlike the single, token, slice of kiwi you see topping most fruit tarts in the dessert case, I like to use lots of kiwifruit on my tarts. For starters, I like the dramatic green color and the cool pattern of the kiwi (imagine that, I like the dramatic). But did you know that each kiwi has LESS than 100 calories? Also, one serving of kiwi (that’s 2 kiwi) has as much potassium as a banana, twice the vitamin C of an orange and the same amount of fiber as a serving of bran flakes (with a much better taste than bran flakes)? They’re also a low fat source of Vitamin E, a good source of magnesium and are sodium free. So have that extra slice of tart, it’s good for you!
Usually these fruit tarts are made with a pastry crust. It was too hot and I was just plain lazy so I decided not to mess with a pastry crust and used lemon cookies. I’m a big fan of minimizing the number of dishes I dirty (since I’m the one who has to wash them). When you make a crushed cookie crust, you get to pour the ingredients into the pan and smoosh them into place – no rolling, folding, lifting and praying (that the dough is the right size, doesn’t tear or fall apart as you put it into the pan). Plus the lemon gives all of these ‘soft’ flavors a bit of a flavor boost.
So go ahead, volunteer to bring dessert to the next party you go to. Everyone is going to love it and ask for your recipe. It’s up to you if you want to share it or not.
As dated as it may sound…men still want an angel on their arm and a whore in the bedroom. For those of you ladies out there who are trying to figure out how you can get a guy to realize that this describes you to a T let me help you out. Of course, this also makes a bit of an assumption that you are not going after a guy who is dumb as a box of rocks. These guys wouldn’t be able to handle the subtlety (meaning – these clods require the obvious painted on your naked body).
Rocking the pencil skirt, high heels, cotton blouse, glasses and an up-do is usually a sure sign that you’re the female equivalent of a mullet. For the record, “the party in the back” part is more figurative than literal in this sense.
Can you talk a little blue? No, I don’t mean talking about how your job sucks, your neighbor is an idiot, your mother is driving you crazy or how many milligrams your Prozac prescription is. Blue talk is using those words that are considered less than ladylike or professional. You don’t want to use the salty language to the point where you would be compared to a truck driver, but the occasional, well-edited f-word gives a bit of a clue that you aren’t a part of the uptight brigade.
Do you make eye contact when you’re talking to a guy that you’re interested in? Making eye contact, a subtle touch of his arm or leg during a conversation let’s him know that you’re interested. The way you hold your head and shoulders shows him how assertive you are. Assertive women are read as being assertive in the bedroom as well.
Don’t let your buttoned up look confuse, or put off, those guys that you’re interested or entice those boring guys you’re not interested in. Make sure that you are putting forward all of the right signals let him know the kind of tigress that lies behind the blouse.
You want to go to New Zealand too? Zespri has a contest for you to enter to have your own Great Kiwi Adventure.
Makes 1 8 inch tart
Lemonade Crust Recipe
- 1 1/2 Cups Mother’s Iced Lemonade Cookies (or other hard lemon cookie – not a cookie with a filling)
- 5 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter (melted)
- 3 Tablespoons Sugar
Pastry Cream Filling Recipe – from Cookn With Class – Paris Cooking Classes
I highly recommend using weights for this recipe (you can get a great digital scale for $20)
- 8 Ounces Whole Milk
- 1 Ounce Corn Starch
- 2 Ounces Sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Whole Egg (crack egg into a small dish, whisk the egg and spoon out amount needed)
- 2 Egg Yolks
- 1 Ounce Unsalted Butter
- 1/8 Ounce Vanilla Extract
White Chocolate Filling Recipe
- 4 Ounces Good Quality White Chocolate (such as Ghirardelli or Lindt)
Fresh Fruit Topping Recipe
- 3/4 – 1 Cup Fresh Blueberries (washed and dried)
- 2 Kiwi Fruit (peeled and sliced into 1/8″ thick slices)
- 1/2 Cup Apricot Preserves (melted)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
Add the cookies to your food processor and pulse until finely ground crumbs. Add melted butter and sugar to processor. Process until all of the ingredients come together and look like wet sand.
Press into an 8″ tart pan with removable bottom. Using your hands and fingers evenly spread the mixture on the bottom and up the sides of the pan. You can also use a springform pan or solid pie pan for this. It’s much easier to slice and serve if you use a pan with a removable bottom.
Put the tart pan on a cookie sheet and bake for 10 – 15 minutes. The crust will be a light brown and somewhat firm to the touch when done.
Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
Dissolve cornstarch in 1/8 cup of the milk. Combine remaining milk with sugar and bring to a boil.
Whisk eggs into the cornstarch mixture. Whisk 1/3 of the boiling milk mixture into the egg and cornstarch mixture. Once thoroughly mixed pour the egg mixture into the boiling milk mixture and continue to whisk for about one more minute. (You’ll see the mixture thickening.)
Remove from heat and whisk in the butter and vanilla.
Transfer the mixture to another container and cover the surface with a layer of plastic wrap. Place into refrigerator to chill.
Once the crust is at room temperature you can begin to assemble your tart.
Finely chop the white chocolate. Place it into a small glass bowl and melt it in the microwave. Use short, 30 second, intervals to melt the white chocolate. After each 30 second interval, remove the container and stir the chocolate pieces. This small amount will probably only take 1 minute in total.
Pour the melted white chocolate over the bottom of the cookie crust. Smooth the chocolate to ensure that it is a consistent thickness. Let it sit for 1 hour to harden or put it into the refrigerator to speed up the process.
Spoon the pastry cream into the cookie crust and evenly cover the chocolate. You can make this layer as thick or thin as you like. There may be leftover pastry cream.
Lay the fruit on top of the tart in any design you desire. For the circles, start in the center and work your way to the outer edges.
Melt the apricot preserves in the same way you melted the white chocolate. Using a pastry or delicate silicone brush, lightly brush the surface of the fruit with the melted preserves.
-This tart should be served the same day it’s made. You can make up the white chocolate covered crust as well as the pastry cream a day or two in advance of when you will be putting the tart together and serving. Just keep them separate until assembling.