gastronome
pate sucree

This is a great, simple tart shell pastry recipe. It's easy to make, it doesn't stick to pans, it barely shrinks at all. I've been sucessfull with it each time i've used it; in mini-tartlette pans, and in several larger tart pans.

My favorite use for this is in Chez Panisse's blueberry and lemon tart. I've done this tart three times, each a resounding success. Most recently, i made it yesterday for anne & Dave's Thanksgiving feast. Both recipes are from Chez Panisse Fruits.

1/4 lb (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Beat together the butter and sugar in a medium-size bowl until creamy. Add the salt, vanilla, and egg yolk and mix until completely combined. Add the flour and mix until there are no dry patches. Wrap the ball of dough in plastic wrap and press into a 4-inch disk. Chill several hours or overnight, until firm.

To roll out the dough, first cut 2 14-inch-square pieces of parchment paper. Remove the disk of dough from the frige and unwrap it. Dust one of the pieces of paper with flour, center the disk on it, and dust the top of the dough with flour. Cover with the other pieces of paper and roll our the disk into a 13" circle about 1/8" thick. If the dough starts to stick to the paper while you re rolling, peel back the ppaer and dust again with flour, and replace the paper. Then flip the whole package over and repeat on the other side. chill the sheet of dough for a few minutes.

To make an 11-inch tart, remove the top sheet of paper and invert the dough into the tart pan. Peel off the remaining piece of apper, press the dough into the corners of the pan, and pinch off any dough overhang. Use the dough scraps to patch any cracks. Let the tart shell rest in the freezer for 10 minutes before baking.

To make 4-inch tartelts, remove the top sheet of paper from the dough and cut out six 5-inch rounds. Transfer the rounds to the 4-inch tartelt pans with a metal spatula. Press the dough into the corners and pinch off any extra dough from the edges. Let the tartlets rest in th freezer for 10 minutes before baking.

To prebake tart shells, preheat the oven to 350f. Transfer the shells directly from the freezer to the oven. Bake until slightly golden, about 15 minutes. Check the pastry halfway through baking and pat down any bubbles that may have formed. Let cool before filling.

Makes 11 oz of dough, enough for 1 11" tart or 6 4-inch tartlets.

Posted by shock on November 29, 2002 | TrackBack
Comments

so, what makes a tart shell different than a pie crust?

Posted by: heather on December 2, 2002 1:59 PM

Hm. On eating, it's a little more like a thin piece of shortbread cookie than it is like a flakey pie crust; somewhere in between. It can stand on its own when you remove the tart ring; it definitely has a little more tooth to it.
On the cooking side, since you use room temp butter and beat it with the sugar, you get more of a dough than you do with pie crust; it's softer, and you're expected to patch it up the sides after rolling it out. You do want it to rest and firm up in the fridge to let the gluten relax, and chill it back down in the freezer for a few minutes before baking, but you don't have to worry that the butter stay cold ALL THE TIME, because you don't need it to form pockets in the crust.

More info than you really wanted? Did i actually answer your question? ;)

Posted by: meriko on December 2, 2002 10:25 PM

yes thanks!

Posted by: heather on December 6, 2002 2:20 PM
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