Hello hello! Happy hump day! Man this week is already driving me nuts! What is it about the week after a holiday that just stinks?? I feel like I’m constantly behind and just treading water to keep up! But aside from that, I managed to make something awesome last night that I want to share with you! May I introduce the Brown Butter Strawberry-Cherry Tart! So good, so seasonal, nothing screams summer like strawberries and cherries!
This is such a wonderful creation, but I can’t take full credit for it! I was inspired by Deb from smitten kitchen who in turn was inspired by this Bon Appetit recipe! Funny how that works sometimes huh? Recipe inspiration can come from anywhere and you can always *tweek* (almost wrote twerk….) a recipe to fit what you may have in your fridge or pantry. That’s why I love baking and cooking so much! You can create new thing from old or branch out and try something new!
Now, back to this tart. So the “traditional” recipes have you making this in a square tart pan with a removable bottom. Can you raise your hand if you have one of these? No? Ok, me either. But what I do have is a round tart pan with a removable bottom! Now, don’t fret if you don’t have one of these either, it’s ok! I’ll tell you how to make your own, so you can easily remove these boogers from whatever pan you use.
But first! The fruit! I used Rainier cherries and strawberries in this tart, but by all means, use what you have or what you like! I would suggest whatever is in season where you are, and to stay away from frozen fruits or berries if you can. They will just bleed into your perfect batter and make it wetter than it needs to be. Ya feel me? So use fresh, in season fruit and you should be good!
Now, this cookie base is super yummy and it’s what we can a par-baked crust, I.e. you bake the crust for a bit before adding the fruit and filling. We do this so that you get that crisp cookie bottom that will support and not fall apart under your delicious filling. I made mine with a little almond flavor, but you can totally skip that if you’d like.
Speaking of this delicious filling, it’s super simple and quick to make! When browning the butter though, you want to make sure you keep a close eye on it do that it doesn’t burn or get too brown. Ideally, you should use a light colored sauce pan so that you can see the butter as it is browning. If you let it go to long then it won’t taste very good in the tart!
Now back to this prep for how to remove theses beauties from the pan, if you don’t have a removable bottom available, cut two 12-inch lengths of parchment paper and trim each to fit the 8-inch width of an 8×8-inch square baking pan. Press it into the bottom and sides of your pan in one direction, then use the second sheet to line the rest of the pan, perpendicular to the first sheet. Congratulations! You’ve just faked a square tart pan. This technique can be used with almost any baked good that you want to easily lift from a pan. As I used a round tart pan, I still placed parchment in the bottom, just to ensure no stickage.
And that’s about it! Lots of words on a Wednesday, but I hope you’re enjoying it and that this inspires you to get in the oven and bake!
See ya next time!
Brown Butter Strawberry-Cherry Tart
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup 1 stick unsalted butter, melted & browned
- 1/2 pound sweet cherries pitted
- 1/2 pound fresh strawberries sliced
Make crust: Preheat over to 375°F. Use a removable bottom tart pan, round or square, or cut two 12-inch lengths of parchment paper and trim each to fit the 8-inch width of an 8×8-inch square baking pan. Press it into the bottom and sides of your pan in one direction, then use the second sheet to line the rest of the pan, perpendicular to the first sheet. Congratulations! You’ve just faked a square tart pan.
Using rubber spatula or fork, mix melted butter, sugar, and vanilla in medium bowl. Add flour and salt and stir until incorporated. Transfer dough to your prepared pan, and use your fingertips to press the dough evenly across the bottom of the pan. Bake the crust until golden, about 18 minutes (it will puff slightly while baking). Transfer crust to rack and cool in pan. Maintain oven temperature.
Make the filling: Cook butter in heavy small saucepan, over medium heat until deep nutty brown (do not burn), stirring often and watching carefully, about six minutes. Immediately pour browned butter into glass measuring cup to cool slightly.
Whisk sugar, eggs, and salt in medium bowl to blend. Add flour, vanilla, and almond and whisk until smooth. Gradually whisk browned butter into sugar-egg mixture; whisk until well blended.
Arrange pitted cherries and strawberries, or the berries of your choice, in bottom of cooled crust. Carefully pour browned butter mixture evenly over the fruit. Bake bars until filling is puffed and golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 minutes (though, of course, it depends on your oven so please watch your baking times carefully). Cool bars completely in pan on rack.
Use the parchment paper overhang to carefully remove cooled bars from pan, or carefully remove the sides of the pan if using a removable bottom tart pan, and place them on a cutting board and cut them into squares, or wedges with a very sharp knife. The cherries, if they fall over your slicing lines, will want to give you trouble but if you saw a sharp knife into them slowly before pressing down, they’ll cut neatly and with minimum carnage.
Do ahead: Can be made at least a day ahead, and stored at room temperature. Any longer, keep them cool in the fridge.