1tablespoonzest of lemonor ½ tablespoon pure vanilla extract
250mlfresh whole milk
For the pastry dough:
320gall purpose flour
For the Italian fruit tart:
For the pastry cream:
Whisk the egg yolks with sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Slowly incorporate the cornflour and whisk until smooth.
Heat the milk over low heat until you see the first bubbles, then drop the egg mixture gently over the hot milk. Do not stir.
Wait a few seconds, the egg mixture will float over the milk surface, then the milk bubbles will pierce the surface and will slowly incorporate it.
When most of the surface is covered with milk, turn the heat off, and whisk the mixture vigorously for about 30 seconds until it turns into pastry cream. Transfer it to ceramic or glass casserole dish, and cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until completely cool.
For the shortcrust pastry:
Whip the butter, sugar, and lemon zest until creamy. Add one egg at a time, and mix in until incorporated. Add in all the flour, and then mix everything.
If the dough is still sticky, dust it with 1 tablespoon of flour and form the dough into a ball without over-working it.
Transfer the ball onto a sheet of cling film, flatten it into a disk and wrap it well. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
For the Italian fruit tart:
Preheat oven to 180 °C/ 360° F, or with the fan option on at 160 °C/ 320 °F.
Roll the dough to a 13-inch (33 cm) circle that’s about ⅛ inch thick.Place the rolled dough gently into a 9-inch tart pan (preferably with a removable bottom). With a sharp knife, trim the edges of the pastry to fit the tart pan. Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes, then blind bake in the oven for 20 minutes. STEP 11 - Add the cream filling.Once the tart base is ready and cooled down, spread the pastry cream over the base.STEP 12 - Decorate with fruit.Decorate the tart with your favorite fruit. As an optional step, you can brush the surface with a bit of apricot jam mixed with water. Serve immediately or store in fridge until ready to serve.
Remove the tart crust from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once the tart base is ready and cooled down, spread the pastry cream over the base.
Decorate the tart with your favorite fruit. As an optional step, warm the apricot jam and water, then brush the surface of the fruit tart with it, to give it a glossy look. Serve immediately or store in fridge until ready to serve.
Do not overwork the pastry dough with your hands, because their warmth will make the butter soften faster.
Dust your counter and your rolling pin lightly with flour before rolling the dough.
To blind bake, top the base of the pastry with parchment paper, followed by baking beads or dried beans to weigh the crust down, and bake for about 10-15 minutes.
Assemble the fruit tart only when both the cream and the pastry are cold.
Fruit must be perfectly dry! Wash it first and pat dry with a kitchen cloth.
I usually avoid filling the tart more than 2-3 hours in advance, as the base would become a bit soggy, especially if you use fruit and cream fillings.