How to make a strawberry frangipane tart
Chef Ruth Rogers shows us how to make this impressive strawberry frangipane tart – perfect to serve at your next dinner party or family gathering.
Hands-on time 45 minutes, oven time 65-75 minutes
You will need:
For the sweet pastry
- 250g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 150g unsalted butter, chilled, cut into cubes
- 60g icing sugar
- 2 medium free-range egg yolks
For the filling
- 300g unsalted butter, softened
- 300g caster sugar
- 3 medium free-range eggs
- 300g ground almonds
- 3 tbsp plain flour
- 600g British strawberries
- 3 tbsp apricot jam
- Rolling pin
- Loose-bottomed, 23cm fluted tart tin
- Baking paper
- Baking beans or rice
1. For the sweet pastry, rub the flour, a pinch of salt and the butter together lightly with your fingers in a large bowl until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs (or pulse in a food processor).
2. Add the icing sugar, then the egg yolks and use a table knife to mixtogether, using a cutting action, until it starts to form a dough. (Or pulse briefly in a food processor.)
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and briefly knead it until smooth. Shape into a flattish disc, wrap in cling film, then chill for at least an hour.
4. Heat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/ gas 4. Roll out the pastry on the floured work surface until large enough to line a loose-bottomed, 23cm fluted tart tin. Roll the pastry around the rolling pin, lift over the tart tin, then unroll so it falls into the tin (see Ruth’s tips). Gently press the pastry into the edges of the tart tin.
5. Run the rolling pin over the top of the tin to trim the pastry. Prick the base all over with a fork. Chill for 15 minutes (or freeze for 10 minutes). Crumple a piece of baking paper, then use to line the pastry case. Fill with baking beans or rice, then blind bake for 20 minutes. Turn the oven down to 150°C/fan130°C/gas 2. Remove the paper and beans/rice, then cook the tart case for 5-10 minutes until lightly golden. Set aside to cool. Turn the oven back to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4.
6. For the filling, put the butter (see Ruth’s tips) and sugar into a bowl and beat with a spoon until soft and fluffy (or use an electric hand mixer). Add the eggs and mix well. Stir in the almonds and flour until smooth.
7. Spoon the filling into the cooled pastry case and level the top. Bake for 40 minutes until the filling is golden and feels set when touched. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely. Remove from the tin.
8. Trim the strawberries and cut each one in half. Starting from the outside edge, lay them in neat overlapping circles until the top of the tart is covered. In a small pan, heat the apricot jam with a splash of water until syrupy (see Ruth’s tips). Pass it through a sieve back into the pan. Brush the smooth, clear glaze over the fruit to give them a glossy sheen.
You can cook the tart, undecorated, the day before and chill overnight (see Ruth’s Tips For Success). The texture will be softer but still good.
Ruth’s tips for success:
- Grind your own almonds in a food processor for a more rustic texture, but bear in mind that over-grinding can cause the oil to leach out and make the tart greasy.
- Take the butter out of the fridge before you make the filling to bring it to room temperature. This will prevent ‘pockets’ of butter forming.
- If you’re not confident about rolling up and unrolling the pastry into the tart tin, try loosely folding the rolled-out pastry in half, then in half again into a wedge shape. Pick it up and put it in the tin so the point of the wedge is in the centre, then unfold the pastry.
- You can use a table knife to spread the mixture in the pastry case, or you may find it easier to use the back of a dessert spoon to ease the filling into the corners.
- If you’re making the tart the day before and chilling overnight, take it out of the fridge 2 hours before you decorate with the strawberries.
- Don’t boil the jam or the glaze will become cloudy and thick.
Nutritional info for 12 servings:
591kcals, 48g fat (22.1g saturated), 10.6g protein, 30.2g carbs (11.6g sugars), 0.2g salt, 1.7g fibre