Peach and Summer Berry Tart

Late summer in the PNW is peak peach and berry season. It’s a joy to harness these seasonal gems in a simple yet delightful tart. The rough puff pastry creates a light, flaky crust that’s an excellent match for the vanilla pastry cream and, of course, the ripe, succulent fruit. Though I often turn to peaches and blackberries for this recipe, feel free to adapt it to the ripest stone fruit and berries you can find — be it plums, nectarines, blueberries or raspberries.
-Leslie Mackie
Printable PDF of this recipe here. 
Makes 4 to 6 servings.

½ cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
½ tsp kosher salt
4 egg yolks
1¼ cup whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp + 1 tsp cold water, divided
1 egg
Powdered sugar for dusting

4 medium peaches or nectarines*
2 cups seasonal berries
Powdered sugar for dusting
¼ cup warm apricot jam or honey

*Note: I prefer to blanch peaches to remove the skin, but this isn’t necessary with nectarines or other stone fruits.

In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Add the yolks and whisk to ensure all lumps are dissolved.

Place milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring it to a boil. Turn off the heat and gradually ladle the hot milk into the yolk mixture, whisking continuously.

Transfer the mixture back to the saucepan and return to medium heat. Gently warm the pastry cream while whisking for about 3 minutes until it thickens. Be careful to not let it boil to avoid scalding or scrambling the mixture.

Remove from the heat and strain into a metal bowl to remove any lumps. Stir in the vanilla and cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent the cream from discoloring while cooling. Chill in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours.

Cut butter into ⅛-inch slices and keep chilled. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour and salt using the paddle attachment. Add the thin slices of butter and mix on low speed for about 3 minutes or until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Add 2 Tbsp of water all at once and combine until absorbed, about 30 seconds.

Form the dough into a 4-inch x 5-inch rectangle on a sheet of plastic wrap, wrap it up, and chill for 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare an egg wash by whisking together the egg and remaining 1 tsp of water. Set aside.

On a floured work surface, roll out dough to make a 12-inch x 7-inch rectangle, approximately ⅛-inch thick.

Along the border of the pastry, cut off a ½-inch strip of dough, brush with egg wash and stack around the perimeter of the crust to create a raised edge. Brush the top of the raised edge with egg wash. Use a fork to poke holes in the dough’s center to prevent air pockets from forming when baking. Chill for another 15 minutes.

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown in color. Let cool to room temperature.

Cut stone fruit in ¼-inch slices and set aside.

Dust the pastry shell with powdered sugar, then scoop the chilled pastry cream into the shell and smooth it out evenly.

Arrange the sliced stone fruit decoratively over the pastry cream. Place the berries at the seams for a beautiful presentation. Brush the top with warm apricot jam or honey for a shiny surface.

Serve immediately or refrigerate the tart up to four hours before serving. Enjoy!