Free-Form Fresh Strawberry Tarts

, from Issue #57. December, 2015
Photography by Manja Wachsmuth.
Free-Form Fresh Strawberry Tarts

Crisp pastry, fresh strawberries and cream: a heavenly trio! These are a breeze to make and a fantastic base for most fresh fruits – try raspberries, blueberries and stone fruit or cherries when in season. Halve the recipe to make one tart.

Serves: 12


1 x 400 gram block puff pastry
1 egg, lightly beaten
raw sugar for sprinkling
150 grams cream cheese at room temperature
2 tablespoons icing sugar
200 grams sour cream
½ cup lemon curd
4 punnets strawberries, sliced
¼ cup pistachios nuts, chopped
icing sugar


Preheat the oven to 180˚C.

Cut the pastry in half and roll each half into a rectangle about 35cm x 25cm.

Brush the edges with egg and fold over a 2cm border all the way around. Press firmly with a fork to seal the edges. Brush the egg all over the pastry and lightly sprinkle the edges with sugar. Place the tarts side by side on a large lined baking tray and chill or freeze until very firm. Chill separately if you don’t have a large enough tray. 

Bake for 10 minutes then turn the tarts over and cook for a further 10 minutes until well cooked and a good golden colour. It may seem unconventional, but I find it gets the bases nice and crisp. 

Turn right side up and transfer to a cooling rack, gently pressing the pastry down as it will have really puffed up. Cool completely. 

Beat the cream cheese and icing sugar until light and fluffy then beat in the sour cream until smooth. Fold through the lemon curd. Chill the cream for 1 hour to firm up. 

To serve: Assemble the tarts just before serving so the pastry stays crisp. Spread the cream evenly over the two tarts. Top with the strawberries then sprinkle with pistachios and a dusting of icing sugar.