Kitchen Tour

What We Cook: Hannah’s 5 Tips For The Perfect Summer Tart

published May 29, 2014
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(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

Who cooks and eats here: Hannah Vainstein and Nathan Hayden
Where: Santa Barbara, California
Rent or Own? Rent

Hannah and Nathan shared their stunning California carriage house kitchen yesterday and now we’re in for their signature summertime treat: a simple fruit tart, adapted from a humble Bisquick box years ago. (Hannah’s mother called the company in the early 90s to get this beloved recipe after it was removed from the packaging!)

This tart creation, complimented by a salty shortbread crust, is so bursting with berries and cream it’ll make you weak in the knees. Read on for Hannah’s tips for the perfect summer tart, no matter the recipe:

(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

Hannah’s Tart Tips

  1. Chill all crust-making ingredients. Chilling the ingredients if you can (especially the butter, but even the flour) helps maintain a nice snap to the crust.
  2. Use the best ingredients whenever possible. Because this particular tart is so very simple, each and every little thing makes a big difference in flavor. Buy high-quality butter, flour, dairy and cane sugar (she also flavors her tart with vanilla beans) as well as the ripest, juiciest berries you can find.
  3. Poke the crust. Poke the crust before it goes in the oven to avoid cracks (this allows the steam to escape).
  4. Be careful not to over-whip the tart filling. This tart only has whipped cream, sugar and cream cheese as the filling, so it’s tempting to whip vigorously. Refrain from doing so! You want a nice, soft peak and the filling will set up further in the fridge if you chill it a few hours before eating.
  5. Go crazy with the seasonal fruit patterns. Nathan is the chief tart decorator in the house. He does concentric radiating patterns, sometimes zig zags, even stars and stripes for a July 4th themed tart. Have fun with it!
(Image credit: Leela Cyd)
(Image credit: Leela Cyd)
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Hannah’s favorite fruit tart recipe, adapted years ago from a recipe on the back of Bisquick box. (Image credit: Leela Cyd)

Get a Recipe

You can find Hannah’s fruit tart recipe here , but you can also check out these other fruit tart recipes from The Kitchn: