Are you planning a 4th of July bash?
This is one of my favorite desserts, reinvented. Remember when fruit pizza was all the rage years ago? Sweet cookie crust, with cream cheese and powdered sugar icing, topped with fruit and glaze. Sometimes the fruit was arranged beautifully, other times it was dumped on top of the crust and cream cheese layer. That was the 80’s. Time to update this classic dessert! You’ll love my Red, White and Blueberry Tart.
First, I headed to Harmons to buy the sweetest, most plump, fresh berries. If you live in Utah, you’re in business! Harmons consistently has the best produce in the state. With the exception of picking berries yourself, Harmons is as fresh as it gets.
How do you update a classic? I decided switching from a pizza pan to tart pans made a big difference in presentation. Other subtle, but game changing differences- a little lemon flavoring, fresh fruit only (nothing canned) and no sugary glaze.
When you break this dessert down, it’s a sugar cookie crust, lemon-cream cheese icing, topped with fresh fruit. So simple, a kid can make it.
I know you’re going to love this for your summer gatherings!
Happy Fourth, and happy baking 🙂
Red, White and Blueberry Tart
- 1 cup butter softened
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon flavoring or lemon emulsion*
- 1 egg
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
- Individual tart pans or 9-10 inch tart pans
Lemon Cream Cheese Filling:
- 12 oz cream cheese room temperature (1 1/2 8 oz blocks cream cheese)
- 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- dash of salt
- splash of milk if needed to thin
- fresh blueberries
- fresh strawberries
- fresh raspberries
Cream together butter and powdered sugar in a large bowl. Add the lemon flavoring or emulsion and egg, beat until combined and smooth, about 1 minute.
Add the flour, baking soda and cream of tartar all at once. Mix just until flour disappears and wet and dry ingredients are combined,
Using individual tart pans (14-16 4-inch pans), or 2-3 9-10 inch or equivalent tart pans, lightly grease the pans with cooking spray.
Scoop the dough into the pans, and press into the pans lightly with hands. If the dough gets too soft, place the dough in the refrigerator for a few minutes to help the dough firm up.
After all of the tart pans are filled, pre-heat oven to 375 and set the racks in the middle of oven.
Bake the tarts for about 10-12 minutes or until tarts are golden brown. For a 9-inch tart pan, bake about 15 minutes. Remove and set on rack to cool. Let cool completely. This step may be done up to two days ahead if kept covered after baked and cooled.
Beat all of the filling ingredients together in a large bowl until smooth and blended well. The filling should be the consistency of frosting.
Set aside in refrigerator until ready to use. If making ahead, refrigerate and cover. Remove from refrigerator about 30 minutes before ready to use.
When ready to assemble:
Wash and drain the fruit thoroughly before using on the tarts. If the fruit is still wet from washing, it may bleed onto the cream cheese filling. I usually wash the fruit, let sit in a colander, then place on paper towels and pat lightly.
Spread the cream cheese filling onto the tarts using a small spatula. Spread the filling almost to the edge of the tart. Arrange the fruit on top of the filling. Place tarts in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
May be prepared early in the day and covered until ready to serve.
-Lemon emulsion and lemon extract are found in most bakery supply stores or stores that sell cake decorating supplies. Do not use lemon juice as a substitute in the tart shell. Fresh lemon juice is called for in the lemon cream cheese filling only.