Basic Tart Crust Recipe – French Short Crust Pastry
Posted on 5 August 2016
Basic Tart Crust Recipe
I love tarts. They are versatile, simple, delicious and handy and they can save us honorably when we have some unexpected guests and want to impress them without too much effort. Sweet or savory, tarts impress through a special design. And, because tarts appear more often in our menu – and also on my blog – I thought it was a good idea to publish the recipe for the tart crust that I use, so that I wouldn’t have to repeat every time the ingredients and method of preparation.
Sweet and savory tart dough have basically the same ingredients and directions. I prefer to add some powdered sugar into the dough for sweet tarts, and put some more salt into the dough for savory tarts. But this is not mandatory, it’s just my option.
The tart crust is very easy to make. The ingredients used for the composition make the dough elastic and pliable so it can be slightly stretched and placed into the tray. Usually the crust is prepared and pre-baked before to fill as desired. There are also recipes in which crust is baked at the same time with the filling.
Ingredients Basic Tart Crust Recipe
- 250 g flour
- 125g butter (cold)
- 1 medium sized egg (cold and cubed)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar (optional)
- 2-3 tablespoons cold water
Directions Basic Tart Curst Recipe
Blend butter with flour and salt (+ sugar, if necessary) until the mixture acquires a sand-like texture. For this recipe is very useful a food processor or a robot or even a hand mixer. The heat of the hands would melt the butter and this would soften the dough and affect its texture. If, however, the tart dough is kneaded by hand, it’s better that the process to be done quickly, to shorten as possible the contact of the dough with the warmth of our hands.
When butter and the dry ingredients are very well mixed, add the egg and continue mixing until smooth. Finally add cold water, one tablespoon at a time, homogenizing well after each addition. You will get a dense, silky and elastic dough. Wrap it into a plastic foil and place it into the fridge for about one hour (at least 30 minutes).
After the rest period, take the dough out from the fridge, discard the plastic wrap and place the dough onto a surface, dusted with some flour. Roll the dough into an even layer of aproximately 5 mm thick. Transfer the dough into the tart shell and press gently the base and walls, so that the dough to stick to the mold. The tart mold doesn’t have to be greased, neither lined with baking paper. The dough contains enough fat so it can be easily remove from the mold when it’s baked and cooled.
Remove the excess dough using a knife. Prick the dough with a fork. Line the shell with baking paper and fill it with pie weights (dried chickpeas, beans or baking pebbles).
Place the mold into the fridge for 30 minutes (or into the freezer for 10 minutes). In the meanwhile, preheat the oven at 175 Celsius degrees.
Insert the mold into the oven for 10-15 minutes (until the crust edges are golden brown), then quicky remove the weights and baking paper and continue baking for another 10 minutes.
When ready, remove the pan from the oven and allow the crust to cool down inside the pan. Once completely cooled, it can be can be used to prepare various tarts – no bake tarts (fruit tarts or chocolate tarts) or baked ones (by putting some filling into the crust and bake again until the filling is ready).