This brown butter pastry goes against everything I know to be true in creating a deliciously delicate tart crust. The butter is baked in the oven until it begins to brown. The flour is the last ingredient to be added. The warm dough is pressed into the tart pans. It's unlike any tart crust I have ever made. And... these tarts were incredible!
After assembly, chill the tarts. The combination of the brown butter pastry, the cold pastry cream, and the juicy blackberries is divine. You will thank me...
• The recipe below is for five 4-inch tarts. I substituted eight 3-inch molds when making my tarts and slightly less than 1 pint of blackberries.
for the crust:
• 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
• 3 tablespoons water
• 1 tablespoon canola oil
• 1 tablespoon sugar
• 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1 cup flour
for the filling:
• 1/4 cup sugar
• 3 tablespoons cornstarch
• 1 tablespoon flour
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 3 egg yolks
• 1 1/2 cups milk
• 2 tablespoons butter, cubed and chilled
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 5 cups blackberries
1. To Make the Crust: Preheat oven to 400˚F. Combine butter, water, oil, sugar, and salt in a heatproof bowl; bake on middle rack of oven until butter is bubbling and lightly brown around the edges of the bowl -- about 20 minutes.
2. Remove from the oven and add the flour, stirring until the dough comes together. Press dough onto the bottom and up the side of five 4-inch tart pans with removable bottoms (or one large 9-inch tart pan -- or eight 3-inch tart molds as I did). Using a fork, prick dough all over. (I found it necessary to continually pierce the base of the tart dough during baking to prevent the dough from rising up. A solution would be to chill the dough-lined tart pans, then press foil onto the crust and fill with dried beans or rice before baking). Bake until cooked through and golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Cool completely before filling.
3. To Make the Filling: Whisk sugar, cornstarch, flour, salt, and egg yolks in a 4 quart saucepan until smooth. Stir in the milk and place pan over medium-low heat; cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove from heat and whisk in the butter until melted and smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract and transfer to a bowl. Cover the pastry cream with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface. Refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours.
4. To Serve: Spread pastry cream evenly over the tart shells. Place blackberries on top. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
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