Think of summer. Think of a cool summer breeze and deliciously sweet summer fruits. This is just what this tart is – they’re as light as a breeze with a fluff of whipped cream and a hint of cherries. Each one is tiny, bite sized to be precise. I just kept popping them into my mouth one hot summer afternoon after I had eaten a heavy meal and wanted some dessert (“but something not too sweet or heavy, please!”). They were over in a flash and this time I did not even pretend like I wanted to save some for the family.
They’re so light and creamy and SO simple to make. All you need are cream and a bowl of cherries. I used the canned variety as the fresh ones were a little sour for my taste. But if you want to use the fresh ones, I’m sure they’ll taste great as well. Sour cherries with cream – they sound good and would provide a balance to the sweetness of the cream.
The tart base is easy though I really need to practice more to get the perfect tart. Oh, and always use ice cold water to make the dough. That is, more ice and less water. The dough should not be sticky so use only one spoonful of water at a time. Another important thing to remember while making tarts is that the dough should never rise while baking. So prick it all over with a fork after pressing it into the tart cases. Then collect a mix of pulses and put some over it before putting it into the oven. This is called blind baking.
Also, make sure that you pit the cherries and put together the puree before you start whipping the cream. The whipped cream has a slight tendency to melt if left out of the refrigerator (a fact I had forgotten until I was reminded by a mess of melting cream in my bowl). You can also adjust the quantity of cherries that you put in according to your taste. This recipe gives a nice not overpowering flavor. After that, you just have to assemble it all together. Easy- peasy.
Cherry Cream Tarts
Makes 12 – 15 small tarts
For the tart base
100 gms plain flour
50 gms butter
A pinch of salt (omit if using salted butter)
Ice cold water to make a dough
- Preheat the oven.
- Sieve the flour with the salt.
- Rub in the butter and make a dough using ice cold water.
- Roll out the dough.
- Cut into desired size and press into tart cases. Prick with a fork. This is to prevent the dough from rising.
- Bake blind in an oven at 230 degree Celsius/ 450 degree Fahrenheit for 10 minutes
- Take them out of the oven and remove the pulses. Bake for another 3 - 4 minutes. Keep a check! They shouldn't burn.
- Cool the tart cases.
For the cream filling
120 gms cream
30 grams pitted cherries
A drop of vanilla essence/ cherry brandy (optional)
- Pit some of the cherries and puree them. Pour in a spoonful of the can syrup as well.
- Whip the cream.
- add the pureed mixture to it.
- Put a few pieces of cherries into each tart case.
- use a piping bag to pipe out the cherry flavoured cream
- put a piece of cherry on top and voila! It’s done.