Classic Fruit Tart With Custard Filling

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Classic Fruit Tart With Custard Filling

I will definitely update the recipe to specify to push the crust up the sides of the pan. And yes, you can definitely use a measuring cup to tamp down the crust. I find that damp fingers work well, but whatever works for you! Cook time on a sheet pan will be about the same as directly in an oven. I will also update the recipe to suggest that you use a whisk or a spoon to sort of force the custard through the strainer. That is what I usually have to do. It is thick but if you use a tool to sort of move it around in the strainer it will go through. Hope this helps and hope you enjoyed the tart!

This classic fruit tart is made with a buttery shortbread tart shell, a custard filling made with vanilla pastry cream, and topped with fresh fruits and a fruit glaze. This is the kind of tart you would find in a French pastry shop but you can make it right at home!


For the Custard

  • 1/4 cup (50 gr) granulated sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 TBSP (14 gr) cornstarch
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup (237 ml) whole milk
  • 1/3 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • 1 TBSP (14 gr) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

For the Shortbread Crust

  • 1/2 cup (112 gr) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (65 gr) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup + 2 TBSP (134 gr) all-purpose flour

For the Fruit & Glaze

  • 1/2 cup (125 gr) jelly or jam (apricot is traditional but red currant, strawberry, or apple can be used)
  • 1 TBSP (14 ml) water or orange liqueur
  • about 4 cups of fruit (a variety of fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peaches, and kiwi works well)


Make the Custard (can be done up to 24 hrs before assembling)

  1. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar either with a whisk or an electric mixer until foamy and about double in size. Whisk the cornstarch and salt into the egg/sugar mixture.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla until they come to a boil. Slowly pour about half of the milk into the egg/cornstarch mixture while whisking continuously. It can be helpful to nestle the mixing bowl in a damp kitchen towel to stabilize the bowl so you can whisk with one hand.
  3. Pour the milk/egg mixture back into the pot with the remainder of the milk and cook over medium/low heat, whisking continuously, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil.
  4. Pour the hot custard through a fine mesh sieve. Add the cold butter and whisk in. Place a piece of plastic wrap right on top of the custard and refrigerate until completely chilled before using, about 2 hours.

Make the Shortbread Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F (177 C). Prepare 9″ (23 cm) round or an 14 x 4.5″ (35.5 x 11.4 cm) rectangular tart pan with non-stick spray.
  2. In the bowl or a stand mixer fit with a paddle attachment, or a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix together all of the ingredients at once. The mixture will be very crumbly. Using damp hands, transfer the dough crumbs into the prepared dish and pat down evenly. Use a fork to dock the dough all over.
  3. Bake on the middle rack at 350 F (177 C) for 30-33 minutes until the crust is completely cooked and let cool completely.

Prepare the Fruit and Fruit Glaze

  1. Wash and slice the fruit you have selected for your tart.
  2. Combine the jelly or jam in a small saucepan with the water or liqueur. Heat over medium heat until the mixture is liquefied. If you used jam, strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer to remove any lumps or seeds.


  1. No more than 24 hours before serving, assemble the tart. Spread the pastry cream over the tart shell. Arrange the fruit over the top in a pretty pattern. Lightly brush the top of the tart with the fruit glaze. Alternatively, you can toss the fruit in the glaze before arranging it over the tart.
  2. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. For the best quality, eat the tart within 24 hours.