The bad news is that I never made it to the beach yesterday. The good news is that I went strawberry picking and ended up making that pretty little tart. Yeah, the weather got super windy and a storm blew in just as we were finishing picking berries. I had a potluck to go to later that night, and decided this tart would be great to bring along for dessert. Someone at work had printed out the recipe and gave it to me, downright raving about this tart. It’s from Cooking Light, so that’s an added plus (semi-healthy!). I also have to say this would be a great Father’s Day treat for super dads out there everywhere. Happy Father’s Day!
Let’s start with the berries. Ray and I went to Sam Mazza’s in Colchester, Vermont to pick our berries.
They were little but sweet!
We picked a flat of berries because I also want to make jam.
Now, we’re ready for the tart! The tart has quite a few steps to it, but minimal cooking time!
Add some graham cracker crumbs to a bowl. I used one sleeve of graham cracker crumbs (about 11 crackers).
Add two tablespoons of sugar.
Four teaspoons of water.
Add four tablespoons of melted butter. Mix together.
My friend Dara got me this 9-inch tart pan a few years ago and I adore it. Thank you Dara! Spray your tart pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Pour in your graham cracker mixture.
Press firmly into the pan. The bottom of a measuring cup works great for this step.
All done! Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Let cool completely.
Add eight ounces of softened, reduced fat cream cheese to a bowl along with 1/4 cup of sugar.
Add 3/4 teaspoon of vanilla.
Add just over 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract.
Mix for one to two minutes or until mixture is smooth and creamy. Set aside.
The Berry Sauce:
Get two cups of berries.
Take off stems and blend them.
Put blended berries into small saucepan.
Add one tablespoon of cornstarch.
2/3 cup sugar.
Heat over medium-high heat until it comes to a boil. Turn down to low, cook one more minute, then let cool, stirring occasionally.
Assembling The Tart:
Hull four cups of berries and slice in half.
Squeeze juice from half a lemon onto the berries.
Spread cream cheese mixture into cooled graham cracker crust.
Arrange berries, cut side down, over the filling.
Now take your berry sauce.
And pour it over the berries. (For some reason you don’t use all the sauce in this recipe, so save some for later.)
Even more beautiful.
The final step is to chill the tart in the refrigerator for three hours.
Of course, I didn’t have time to chill it for three hours:) I chilled it for about half an hour and took it to the potluck. Everyone LOVED this tart. The almond flavor of the filling is awesome. Next time, I might add almonds to the graham cracker crust for an added almond kick. (And more butter for a less crumbly crust…..sorry Cooking Light!)
Strawberry Almond Cream Tart
adapted from Cooking Light
- 11 sheets of honey graham crackers, processed to crumbs
- 2 T sugar
- 4 T melted butter
- 4 teaspoons water
- 8 ounces reduced fat cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract (I added a little over 1/4 teaspoon)
- 2 cups strawberries
- 1 T cornstarch
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 4 cups berries, cut in half
- 1 T lemon juice
For the crust. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add crumbs, sugar, butter, and water together in a bowl. Place graham mixture in sprayed 9-inch tart pan. Make sure crumbs come up along sides of tart pan. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Cool completely on wire rack.
For the filling. Combine cream cheese, sugar, and extracts in a bowl. Mix until smooth. Spread into cooled tart crust.
For the berry sauce. Place two cups of berries (stems removed) into a blender. Blend until smooth and add to small saucepan. Add 2/3 cup sugar and cornstarch. Heat over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low and cook for another minute. Remove glaze from heat. Cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
For the topping. Combine strawberries and lemon juice in a bowl. Arrange the strawberries, cut side down, to the top of the tart filling. Pour half of the glaze evenly over the berries (reserve remaining glaze for another use…..perhaps a second berry tart!). Cover and chill for three hours in the refrigerator.