These little Fruit Tartlets are as delicious as they are beautiful!
Back when I was serving as a missionary in the great city of Toronto Canada, a beautiful little fruit tart caught my eye in a local grocery store. I barely had any money, but my curiosity was piqued and I couldn’t resist buying one to give it a taste. Worth Every Penny. I could hardly wait until I got my next month’s allotment of living cash and I could go get another one of those fruit tarts! I never dreamed that I’d be able to make them in my own home someday, but now I can!
I wrote this recipe as an introductory one for those who have never made a fruit tart/Fruit Tartlets before. I decided to make it easy by using pre-made pie crusts from the grocery store instead of making the traditional cookie like crust from scratch. So all you need to focus on when making these fruit tartlets is the classic pastry cream filling.
How to make Pastry Cream
The taste of classic pastry cream just can’t be beat; don’t even think of using a store bought vanilla in its place! You’ll start by warming sweetened half and half on the stove to bring it to a good simmer. While it’s warming, whisk together egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch. You’re going to temper this mixture- meaning you’ll make it so you can add hot liquid to it without curdling the eggs.
When the half and half comes to a full simmer, you’ll pick up the pot and pour a tiny hot stream of half and half into the egg mixture while whisking it into the eggs super fast. This warms the eggs enough to change their nature and keep them from curdling. Continue to vigorously pour and whisk in a little more, then put your pan of half and half back over the heat. Now, slowly pour the egg mixture into the half and half while whisking it quickly, using a spatula to scrape all the egg mixture out of the bowl.
Whisk this mixture constantly until the cream thickens, usually within just a minute. Off heat, whisk in the butter and vanilla. Pour through a fine mesh strainer and press plastic wrap right onto the surface of the cream so it doesn’t form a film on top. (Did anyone call it ‘the scum’ of the cream/pudding when they were little? My family did hahaha! But I digress :0) Place the pastry cream in the fridge to chill for at least 2-3 hours.
How to make Fruit Tartlets
I found that my flour sifter was the perfect diameter for cutting rounds of pie crust dough to fit into my tartlet pans. Gently press it into the bottom and fluted sides of the tartlet pans. The technique to practice here is to lift the edge of the dough with one hand, and press it into the bottom edges with the other (so the dough doesn’t accidentally catch and tear apart on the rim).
You can sprinkle a little granulated sugar onto the store bought dough if you like to sweeten it a bit. It should be popped into the freezer for about 15 minutes to set and harden the dough. Once thoroughly chilled, press foil into the tart pans and fill with pie weights (or pennies) to bake. Bake them covered for 10 minutes, then remove the foil and weights and bake the crust for another 7 minutes or so, until it is golden brown.
Once the crusts are cooled, they’re ready to be filled with pastry cream. Their almost ready to eat!
Once filled with pastry cream, top each Fruit Tartlet with a combination of blueberry-raspberry-kiwi, or sliced strawberries, or any combination you like! They are all delicious :0) The goal is to tightly arrange the fruit to completely cover the cream, then it’s lightly brushed with a hot apple jelly glaze to really make the fruit shine and give a little extra sweetness.
I know that once you try one of these little tarts, you’ll be hooked! They are sooooo impressive to serve to your guests too. Please let me know what you think and rate the recipe below!
Yield 6 individual tartlets
These beautiful little Fruit Tartlets are dazzling for the eye and the taste buds. This recipe is made easier with store bought pie crusts; all you need to worry about is making the pastry filling and picking the most beautiful fruits and berries to top your tarts.
- 2 cups half and half
- 1/2 cup sugar
- pinch of salt
- 5 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter cut into 4 pieces
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 package of premade pie crusts (containing 2 crusts)
- 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
- 2-3 ripe kiwi fruits
- 1/2 cup fresh raspberries
- 1/2 cup sliced fresh strawberries
- 1/3 cup Apple Jelly
- 3 or more mini tart pans
- pasty brush
- Make pastry cream by stirring the half and half, 6 tablespoons of sugar and a pinch of salt in a pot over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the mixture begins to simmer.
- While the half and half heats up, whisk the egg yolks and 2 tablespoons of sugar together until smooth. Whisk the cornstarch into the egg mixture and set aside.
- When the half and half mixture comes to a full simmer, slowly pour in about 1/2 cup to 1 cup of the half and half mixture while whisking the eggs vigorously. Slowly pour the mixture back into the pot of hot half and half while whisking half and half vigorously. Continue to cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and comes to a gloppy boil.
- Remove from heat, and whisk in the butter and vanilla. Pour through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the cream to cover, and refrigerate until completely cooled, about 2 hours.
- While pastry cream is cooling, line tart pans with premade pie dough by cutting out circles of dough slightly larger than the pans (one large round pie crust should produce three smaller circles to fill the tart pans) with the bottom of a flour sifter or something else of similar size. Press the dough into the bottom and fluted sides. Place dough filled tart pans into the freezer for 15 minutes.
- Set the oven to heat to 400 degrees F. Press aluminum foil into tart pans over dough. Fill with pie weights or pennies to the rim. Place tart pans on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Carefully remove foil and weights and place tarts back into the oven for 5-10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and cool, leaving the crust in the tart pans.
- Remove the pastry cream from the fridge and spread into tarts (do not fill all the way to the top so you have some room for the fruit to sit). Closely pack the fruit on top of the tart in a single layer to cover the cream.
- Microwave the apple jelly for about a minute, or until just simmering. Stir, and lightly brush onto fruit with a pastry brush. Best served within about 30 minutes.
Serving Size 1 tartlet
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value
Total Fat 24.9 g
Saturated Fat 11.3 g
Cholesterol 183 mg
Sodium 256 mg
Total Carbohydrates 50.2 g
Dietary Fiber 2.9 g
Sugars 26.7 g
Protein 5.4 g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.