Strawberry fields forever
Do you ever get a song stuck in your head that you can’t stop singing over and over? Well, with the plethora of strawberries that keep showing up at my house, that’s what happened and how the strawberry tart transpired. I told Pepé about the song “Strawberry Fields Forever.” and so of course now he can’t stop singing it either. Strawberry Fields Forever was a really big hit song by the Beatles in 1967. I never really knew what the song was about until the song got stuck in my head, so I looked up the lyrics and then read this article. John Lennon wrote the song because Strawberry Field was a Salvation Army home (an orphanage) in Liverpool where John Lennon used to go. It was a special place for John because he lost both his parents and he felt a kinship with the boys.
As I mentioned earlier, we have been getting a lot of strawberries from our local CSA and I needed to use them or freeze them. Since my freezer is about to burst, I thought I better use them in a recipe and luckily I had the perfect opportunity. We recently spent a weekend in the country with some friends (including Pepé) where each couple is in charge of cooking one meal. I was already making lasagna, a Pasta House style salad and lemony roasted green beans. I don’t normally make a dessert, but since I had strawberrypalooza on my hands I decided it was time for my strawberry tart. Most recipes I see out there call for a jam glaze or a chocolate drizzle, but I think the balsamic glaze just balances very nice with the sweet and rich flavors of the strawberries and cream cheese. Garnish with fresh basil or mint if you’re feeling extra fancy.
By the time we were done, we were all just as stuffed as my freezer. Time for some stretchy pants and more wine!
I got these mustaches from a beer fest that some of us attended and new they would come in handy for something. First I surprised all the girls wearing my silly mustache, then I asked if they wanted to join in the fun and make the boys laugh. Someone asked us to look mean. I think my friend front and center did the best. We are now calling her little Joey. Don’t mess with her. LOL
OK, maybe we had too much wine as we are feeling a bit too tartatious! Is that even a word? LOL
Blend all crust ingredients until crumbly (about 1 minute).
Press into a 9-inch round tart pan with a removable bottom (preferably non-stick). Pierce bottom of crust all over with a fork and then freeze for 10-15 minutes. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until it the color is little darker (see color difference in photo below. Let cool.
Mix Cream cheese, sugar and vanilla.
Spread into cooled crust.
Arrange sliced strawberries like in photo (starting with the outside edge) or however you wish. Chill. Drizzle with balsamic glaze (optional) just before serving.
Strawberry Tart & Balsamic Glaze
- 1 1/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 Cup Cold Butter (unsalted) (1 stick)
- 1/3 Cup Sugar
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 1/2 - 2 Pounds Strawberries
- 8 Ounces Cream Cheese
- 1/4 Cup Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Balsamic Glaze (optional)
- 1 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- 1/4 Cup Honey
- Crust: Preheat oven to 350°F. Blend all crust ingredients until crumbly (about 1 minute). Transfer crumbs to a 9-inch round tart pan with a removable bottom (preferably non-stick) and press evenly along bottom and sides. Poke bottom of crust all over with a fork and then freeze for 10-15 minutes. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until it the color is little darker. Not browned. Let cool.
- Filling: Mix Cream cheese, sugar and vanilla and spread into cooled crust. Arrange sliced strawberries like in photo (starting with the outside edge) or however you wish. Chill. Drizzle with balsamic glaze (optional) just before serving.
- Balsamic Glaze: (optional) About 20 minutes Mix balsamic vinegar and honey in a saucepan or shallow skillet over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and continue to stir until glaze is reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Glaze should coat the back of a spoon. It will thicken a little more as it cools. Pour into a squeeze bottle and use to drizzle many sweet and savory dishes. I keep mine in my pantry for several months.