Dan's North ForkHampton Eats

North Fork Recipe: Claudia Fleming’s Strawberry-Rhubarb Croustada

The doyenne of North Fork dining shares her sagely, pastry wisdom.

Top chefs and foodies gathered at Dan’s Chefs of the North Fork hosted by The Halyard at Sound View Greenport to honor the doyenne of North Fork dining Chef Claudia Fleming on Saturday, July 7. However, some East Enders were were unable to snag tickets before they all sold out. So we asked Fleming, one of America’s best pastry chefs, for a recipe to celebrate the season and offer solace to those who missed out. This new take on the classic combination of strawberry and rhubarb is as beautiful as it is delicious. Now anyone can get a taste of the doyenne of North Fork dining’s culinary genius from the comfort of their own home. Just don’t expect your first attempt to be as perfect as hers.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Croustada with Rose-Scented Crème Fraîche

Crust:
1 1/2 cups, plus 1 tablespoon,  all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2  teaspoon salt
5 oz. (10 tablespoons), unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Filling:
4 cups of chopped rhubarb
1 cup halved strawberries
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3  tablespoons cornstarch
1/2  teaspoon vanilla extract

Crumble Ingredients:
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

1. Preheat the oven 375° F. In a large bowl, whisk together granulated sugar, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon.
2. Drizzle in the butter and stir with a fork until the mixture is crumbly and all the flour is incorporated. Break up any large crumbs with your fingers. The crumbs should be smaller than one inch in size (otherwise they won’t cook all the way through).

Egg wash:
1 whole egg, whisked

Rose cream:
1 cup crème fraîche
1/4 cup rose preserves

1. Beat the crème fraîche in the bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed until it thickens. Add the preserves and whip until stiff peaks form.

Crust:
1. Combine first 3 ingredients in food processor and blend 5 seconds.
2. Add butter. Using pulse key, blend until butter is reduced to pea-size pieces.
3. Add 1/3 cup ice water. Use pulse key until dough comes together in moist clumps. Add water by the teaspoon if dough seems dry.
4. Gather dough into a ball, wrap in plastic and flatten into a disc.
5. Chill at least 1 hour. Dough can be refrigerated 1 day or frozen up to 1 month.
6. Roll dough out on a lightly floured board into a 14-inch round, turning dough occasionally to prevent sticking.
7. Transfer dough to a flat baking tray, lined with a non-stick baking sheet.
8. Chill dough until firm, about 15 minutes.

Filling:
1. In a medium bowl, combine rhubarb and strawberries with sugar, cornstarch and vanilla, toss.
2. Preheat oven to 375° F. Remove sheet tray with dough from the refrigerator. Allow to soften slightly 1-2  minutes.
3. Spoon fruit into the center of the dough. Reserve juices.
4. Arrange fruit in an even 10-inch diameter layer on the dough. Brush a 2-inch border of dough with egg glaze.
5. Lift the 2-inch dough border and pinch to form vertical seam. Continue around tart pinching seam every 2 inches to form a standing border. Fold border down over fruit (center 6 inches of fruit remain uncovered).
6. Brush folded border with egg glaze, sprinkle with raw sugar.
7. Pour remaining fruit juices into the center of the tart. Cover the hole with 1 cup of the crumble mixture.

Baking:
1. Place tart in oven. Bake until crust is golden brown and fruit filling is bubbling, about 55 minutes.
2. Remove tart from oven. Slide large metal spatula under tart to loosen. Slide tart onto rack to cool, dust with confectioners sugar, serve tart with rose-scented crème fraîche.

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