Is there anything better than noodles in a hearty red sauce with ooey-gooey cheese? How about making it in a slow-cooker with chicken?
This classic fruit tart recipe eliminates the most time-consuming aspect by using a boxed pudding mix. Delicious and easy!
About this Recipe
Perfect, buttery-sweet pastry crust…creamy filling…fresh fruit bursting with flavor. What could be better on a bright summer’s day? Best of all, this fruit tart recipe is EASY! (Because, yeah, I cheated. And I’m not apologizing for it.)
As I was hunting for classic fruit tart recipes, I quickly decided that the time-consuming custard filling was the part making me not want to actually tackle the recipe. Then I thought, “Why get hung up on that? Just use a boxed pudding mix, silly!” And so I did. 😉
I chose a cheesecake flavored pudding (great choice, but vanilla would work too!), and it was sugar free, because that’s what my supermarket had in stock. As it happened, I also had sugar-free apricot jam on hand when I randomly decided to make this on a Monday evening over the summer…so I thought, why not embrace the no-sugar-added thing and use All Purpose In the Raw for the crust too? It turned out PERFECTLY, and I didn’t spill the beans on the sugar-free bit until AFTER the four adults, 1 teen, and 5 children had already devoured their initial servings and fought over the the last pieces. 😉
Making this in the summer meant I had some really delicious fresh berries on hand–I chose strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and some fruit-cup mandarins that I had stashed too. I’ve made it before with kiwi slices, which I love, and mango slices would work as well. The key to fruit selection is making sure they’re things that won’t juice too much or turn too brown, which rules out apples, bananas, pears, peaches, or sliced full-size oranges.
This recipe takes a bit of planning ahead, but most of the time is just chill time. Active time is really only about 30 minutes total. Plus, you get the joy of something truly beautiful and artistic with those berry arrangements! I promise you, this dessert LOOKS incredibly impressive and will get some oohs and ahhs from whomever you share it with, but it’s easy-peasy to put together.
For the Crust
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup sugar or substitute
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 egg yolk
- Nonstick cooking spray and/with flour for the pan
- 1 box vanilla or cheesecake instant pudding
- 2 cups milk
- ~4 cups fresh fruit (berries, kiwi, mandarin pieces, mango) assorted
- ¼ cup apricot jam
- Using the paddle attachment in a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar or sweetener and salt until pale and creamy. This should take about 2 minutes on medium speed. Scrape the sides and then add the flower, mixing until it’s fully incorporated. It ought to resemble course sand. Add the egg yolk and mix again. Knead the dough into a ball with your hand. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 5 days.
- Spray a tart pan with a removable bottom (anything from 9-11 inches in diameter will work for this recipe) with nonstick cooking spray; either use the kind that has flour in it already, or else flour the pan after you’ve sprayed.
- Press the crust dough, bit by bit, into the pan in a thin layer, making certain it gets in all the fluted edges and covers the whole bottom. There will be enough, promise! Use a knife to trim any excess from the top edge and work it into the bottom. Freeze for another 30 minutes.
- Adjust the oven rack to the center position and preheat the oven to 350˚. Bake the crust for 23-26 minutes, until lightly browned and golden. Let it cool completely on a wire rack.
- While the crust is cooling, mix up your pudding with the milk according to package directions, making sure you get all lumps out. Chill while the crust cools.
- Once the crust is COMPLETELY cool, spread the chilled pudding over the shell. Top with sliced strawberries, (unsliced) blackberries and/or raspberries, blueberries, mandarin orange slices, sliced kiwi, sliced mango, or other fruits that won’t juice too much or brown too quickly.
- Melt the apricot jam in the microwave in 30-second intervals until it’s loose enough to spread. Use a pastry brush to brush it over the fruit, giving it a nice gloss.
- Refrigerate until ready to eat. Slice like a pie into 8-12 servings and enjoy!
From the Books
Fruit tart plays a rather crucial role in A Beautiful Disguise when Lady Marigold’s “stunt double” makes the misstep of eating some when the lady herself never would have. For shame, Gemma! 😉
These cookies can work for ANY season, but the spring colors make them perfect for your Easter table!
Soaked or slow-cooked oat groats create a classic porridge with a satisfying bite and familiar oat flavor, a perfect base for your fixings!