Could these possibly be the last of the strawberries for the year?
It seems not too long ago that we were just getting excited about the start of the strawberry season. Spending quite a few days at our pick-your-own strawberry farm on the way home from work and school became customary.
However a couple of weeks ago as we made our way to the fields both Soeren and I were saddened by the sight of a small tractor turning the soil over and preparing the individual patches for the next season – next year!
Our favorite patch on the field had been trimmed and laid to rest, but the farmer’s wife pointed us to a lone patch at the far end of the field and told us we might be able to find a few there. Alas, although we did find a few, they were not enough to really bring home. Instead, we gathered what we found and then made our way back to the car where we sat with the boot open and munched the few fistfuls of the juicy fruit.
It did not take long for the tractor to make its way to that patch, working its way like a fierce giant treading all that came in its way flat. Simultaneously, Soeren and I let out a forlorn sigh. We both were recalling the lovely day we spent with 3 of his friends at the field just a few days earlier.
It was a hot and muggy afternoon and the house echoed with the giggles and squeaks of pre-teens. Soeren had three friends over and after spending most of the morning outdoors, were taking refuge in the coolness of his room. Usher played on the radio and the four kids seemed to be getting nosier by the minute. As I tried to concentrate on some paperwork, the combination of rising temperatures combatting against the rising pandemonium in Soeren’s room became impossible.
Shutting my notebook, I told the four to put their shoes on as we were going on a little trip. I revel at the sight of sparkles in the eyes of 10 year olds when adventure or mystery lies ahead and I piped on that tune like the Pied Piper to lure them into the car.
As we neared the fields I told them what their mission was.
“A Tart – not just any tart but THE perfect strawberry tart is in the planning. As the best Strawberry Agents in Weimar, your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to find the juiciest and plumpest strawberries on the field. But be aware: there are other strawberries camouflaged as juicy strawberries but a closer look reveals them to be moldy, mushy and tasteless. Your weapons: bamboo strawberry baskets, your bare hands and your mouths. Make sure you devour as many of the strawberries before you use the baskets. Wish you all the best with your Strawberry Mission”
Off they hastened giggling, but fully submerged in their new role of Strawberry Agents on their strawberry mission. I watched them chattering away, squealing at the sight of the right fruit.
“No! These are too big! Look here are so many!”
“Oh look these are so red!”
“No no – they do not taste good enough for the tart”
And in this way a few hours passed and we came home with about 4 kilos of the juiciest and sweetest strawberries of the season. In these few hours I was able to put together a couple of ideas I had whizzing in my head for a tart and our teamwork proved to be extremely fruitful.
Back at home I prepped the ingredients and the kids helped to weigh, cut and mix. Rolling out the pastry, whisking the filling and cutting the strawberries, the mission continued into the afternoon. Finally when I put the tart together, 4 pairs of gleaming eyes looked at me with big beaming grins.
Their mission was a success!
I simply adore strawberries with thick creamy custard and the idea for this tart is inspired from this. I add ground hazelnuts to the pastry as I find nuts give a pastry case that extra bite. The filling for the best strawberries was to be something luxurious and the creaminess of a smooth crème pâtissière just beckoned me. I did not go through the task of using a bain-marie for the custard though, with the kids all in the kitchen, I opted to heat it very gently in a saucepan. It’s a simple and easy to put together kind of tart without much hassle of a complicated pastry crust. Brilliant for Strawberry Agents waiting to devour the most perfect strawberry tart ever!
A rich buttery hazelnut pastry embracing luscious strawberries and creamy custard filling for an unbeatable summer feeling, this tart is for connoisseurs who like to indulge in a bit of luxury. Although it’s an easy tart to create, it provides some extravagant flavors. Only the best strawberries will make this worthwhile as the tart is loaded with the fresh fruit. Hold on the last of the summer … it’ll be gone before you know it.
Strawberry Link Love
Honey Balsamic Strawberry Galette by Hannah of Honey & Jam
Strawberry Shortcakes by Naomi of Bakers Royale
Strawberry Hues Design Seed
Strawberry Music Festival at Yosemite National Park
Monochromatic Monday: Strawberry Shortcake by Camille Styles
and of course the divine
Strawberry Mascarpone Whipped Cream Tart by Jamie of Life's A Feast
I’ve started to long overdue and much needed blog maintenance - its going slowly - very slowly but one of the first things I wanted to tackle was to add a designated page for all the workshops I am teaching and have taught. You’ll find the Workshops page on the navigation bar above for easy access. This page will be updated to add all the upcoming workshops and for an easier overview of all the past workshops and their reviews,
Don’t forget you can still join us for the A Taste of Yellow - A Tribute to Barbara Harris till August 11th, 2012. Our August Mingle will be announced shortly over at the lovely Zizi’s Adventures , who has chosen a fantastic and fun theme. Make sure to keep yourself updated.
Hold-on-to-summer tart ideas from WFLH:
|Apricot and Pistachio Frangipane Tart||Bakewell Tart with Thyme Infused Cherry Preserve and Cashew Frangipane||Minty Peach & Cardamom Goat Cheese Tart|
All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2012 Meeta Khurana Wolff unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First