Fruit Tart

Today has been a busy day preparing for a special occasion! My mom and sister, Lizzie, are coming from Seattle to visit me for the weekend. After the cleaning and organizing, I was prepared to tackle the big question... What am I going to bake for their arrival? I couldn't imagine anything more suitable for my earthy mom and sweet sister than a fruit tart. I used Ina Garten's recipe for the filling and used a simple crust recipe I had. I'm really pleased with the result. Tasted amazing, even without the cognac. The almonds in the crust were the perfect touch.

1-1/8 cup flour
1/4 lb. butter
2 tablespoons water
2-1/4 teaspoons finely chopped almonds

Pastry Cream
3 extra-large egg yolks , at room temperature
6 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
1 tablespoon heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon cognac or brandy

preheat oven to 350
To make the crust: simply combine the softened butter, flour, and water in a mixer (or by hand like me) till the dough forms. Spread the dough into the tart pan and scatter the chopped almonds. Poke the bottom of the tart with a fork till it is covered with little holes. Cover with buttered parchment paper and fill with pie weight, such as beans, I used lentils. Cook for 20-25 min.

To make the Pastry cream: Beat egg yolks and sugar till light yellow, about 3 minutes on medium-high speed. On low speed, beat in cornstarch. In a large saucepan, bring milk to a simmer. Slowly pour milk into egg mixture while whisking, then pour back into saucepan.
Cook over medium heat, stirring .constantly with a whisk until mixture is thick, about 4 minutes.
Bring to a boil and cook on low heat 2 to 3 more minutes.
Remove from heat; mix in butter, vanilla, cream and cognac.
Pour through a strainer into a bowl. Place plastic wrap directly onto custard and refrigerate until cold.

All you have to do is our the chilled custard into the tart and arrange your fruit!