These gluten free berry tartlets are everything bright and happy and summery. With a buttery gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry and a decadent lemon-flavoured cream filling, they are the perfect treat for any occasion. Super easy to make, these mini tarts are the perfect gluten free dessert!
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It finally feels like spring – yes, even in the UK. For the last few days, the skies have been blue, the sunshine bright and cheerful, and the temperatures almost summery. The kind of days that make you happy, and make getting up in the morning so much easier.
It’s only right, then, that we celebrate such unexpectedly lovely weather with some summery desserts. I know that tarts and tartlets are actually an all-year-round kind of dessert… but in my mind, I always associate them with summer picnics, lemonade and a gentle breeze that makes the heat pleasant rather than overwhelming.
These gluten free berry tartlets are everything bright and happy and summery. With a lemon-flavoured cream filling and topped with an abundance of berries, they are both delicate and rustic at the same time. And the gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry… da-yum. It’s actually the same pastry that I’ve used in the decadent chocolate tart recipe – just goes to show how one reliable (and delicious) basic recipe makes all the difference.
The recipe is simple – the gluten free shortcrust pastry can be thrown together in no time, and while that’s chilling you can make the pastry cream. It’s a simple one (even if we can call it by its fancy name: crème pâtissière), made from simple ingredients: egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, milk and lemon zest.
You know me – I’m all for simple, fuss-free recipes. This definitely fits the bill.
And once the gluten free tartlets shells are baked and the pastry cream cooled – all you need to do is spoon some of the cream into the shells and top with a small mountain of berries. Or other fruit. Go crazy. Make it as colourful as possible. Have fun.
A dusting of powdered sugar to make it extra pretty… and that’s it.
I hope you love these gluten free berry tartlets as much as I do. I hope you enjoy them on a sunny day with some friends. Have a picnic and drink lemonade and soak in the sunshine. (And if the weather is awful and cold and you have snow in April… make them anyway and close your eyes and feel the summer breeze in your hair with every bite you take.)
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Gluten Free Berry Tartlets
These gluten free berry tartlets are everything bright and happy and summery. With a buttery sweet gluten free shortcrust pastry and a decadent lemon-flavoured cream filling, they are the perfect treat for any occasion. Super easy to make, these mini tarts are the perfect gluten free dessert!
For gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry:
- 2 cups (250 g) plain gluten free flour blend (I've used a simple store-bought blend of rice, potato and maize flour with no added xanthan gum)
- 7/8 cup (100 g) powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- pinch of salt
- 1 stick + 1 tbsp (125 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 2 egg yolks
- 3 - 4 tbsp cold water
For lemon-flavoured cream filling:
- 1 3/4 cup + 2 1/2 tbsp (450 mL) milk
- 5 egg yolks
- 2/3 cup (125 g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (30 g) cornstarch
- zest of 2 lemons
You will also need:
- 6 mini tart pans with loose base (Note 1)
- berries of choice for topping
- powdered sugar for dusting
For gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry:
In a bowl, sift together the gluten free flour, powdered sugar, xanthan gum and salt.
Add the cubed cold unsalted butter, and use your fingers to rub the flour and butter together until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Add the egg yolks and mix together with a fork.
Add the cold water, 1 tbsp at a time, stirring well with a fork after each addition. After you've added about 3 - 4 tbsp of water, use your hands to bring the dough together in a ball. Knead it together briefly to get a smooth shortcrust pastry dough – if there are too many dried bits, sprinkle with a bit of cold water and briefly knead again.
Wrap the finished pastry dough into cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Pre-heat the oven to 355 ºF (180 ºC) and get a 6 mini tart pans with a loose base (affiliate link) ready. To make things easier, place them on a baking sheet, so it will be easier to put them into/take them out of the oven.
Roll out the pastry dough about 3 mm thin. Cut it up into smaller pieces to make lining the mini tart pans easier.
Carefully transfer the dough into the mini tart pans and ensure that it's snug with the sides of the tart pans. Trim any excess pastry.
Prick the dough all over with a fork.
Line the dough in each mini tart pan with a small piece of baking/greaseproof paper. (To make this easier, scrunch up the baking paper beforehand, but make sure to mark which is the greased/"non-stick" side beforehand!) Press the paper into the edges of the dough. Fill the paper with baking beans (or some rice, if you don't have those on hand). Chill in the fridge for about 15 minutes.
Blind bake the tartlets for 15 minutes at 355 ºF (180 ºC), then carefully remove the baking beans and paper, and bake for a further 10 - 12 minutes at the same temperature, until the tartlet shells are golden brown.
Allow to cool, then carefully remove the pastry shells from the mini tart pans.
For the lemon-flavoured cream filling:
In a saucepan, bring the milk to the boil.
Make sure you're using a saucepan that isn't sensitive to scratching – you'll use the same saucepan to make the cream filling, and you'll have to whisk it. So a non-stick saucepan isn't suitable – go for something like stainless steel!
In the mean time, in a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and granulated sugar until pale. Add the cornstarch and lemon zest and mix well.
Slowly pour the boiling hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. Don't add the milk too quickly, or your eggs will scramble!
Return the mixture to the saucepan and start cooking it on medium heat with constant stirring. At this beginning stage, when the mixture is still runny, don't use a whisk! Using a whisk will lead to a foam forming, and that foam is a pain to get rid of.
Once the cream has started thickening (after about 2 - 3 minutes), switch to a whisk and whisk well until the cream has thickened completely (a further 2 - 3 minutes).
Transfer the cream filling into a heat-proof bowl and allow it to cool to room temperature. Stir occasionally to prevent "skin" formation.
Spoon the cooled cream filling into the cooled tartlet shells and smooth out the top.
Chill in the fridge until you're ready to serve, then top with berries of choice, dust with a bit of powdered sugar, and enjoy!
The gluten free berry tartlets keep well in the fridge for about 3 - 4 days.
Note 1: (affiliate link) I love these mini tart pans from Webake!
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