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How to Bake Rustic Fruit Tart in Convection

Pies are a popular way to make good use of a surplus of fruit but they can be long in baking and a little arduous to prepare. A rustic fruit tart on the other hand is one of the easiest desserts to make and can be made year-round with seasonal fruits. The pastry crust requires only 4 ingredients and can be mixed by hand or in a food processor however, like all pastry it will benefit from a good chill prior to rolling out and baking.

What is the Best Oven Mode for Baking Rustic Tarts?

While the Bake mode is traditionally used for baking both pies and tarts, the circulating heat of the Convection Bake mode results in a lighter flakier crust. As always it’s important to think about how a mode will benefit the item you are cooking.

For example, even though fruit-filled pies and fruit tarts both have a pastry crust they are not baked the same way or at the same temperature. Pies with a generous amount of filling are baked in a pie dish at a higher temperature, while rustic tarts with a light topping of fruit are baked on a flat cookie sheet at a slightly lower temperature.

Recipes for both pies and tarts always instruct that the baking should be done on a rack placed low in the oven close to the bottom heating element to ensure the pastry bakes through.

When baking in a gas oven or an electric oven with an exposed heating element, baking a tart on rack position 2 (counting up from the bottom) is recommended to avoid burning the bottom of the tart. However, when baking in an electric oven with a concealed bottom heating element, rack position 1 where the tart is closer to the bottom heating element will provide the best results.

Is the Type of Pan I Bake on Important?

The best type of pan for baking a rustic fruit tart is a flat cookie sheet, however, you can also use a shallow-rimmed baking sheet or even a round pizza pan. If you have an oven baking stone, you can assemble the tart on a piece of parchment paper resting on a pizza peel and transfer it carefully to the heated stone for baking.

When baking in Convection never use a cushion-air baking pan as those pans were designed to be used in the traditional Bake mode.

Another thing to consider is the color of the pan, very dark pans can contribute to a good crust but they also cook faster than lighter-colored baking pans so setting the timer a little in advance of the recipe time is recommended. Most important is of course to always reduce the recipe temperature by 25F when baking in Convection to avoid overcooking the edges.

You will find several recipes for fruit tarts on the website, a Strawberry Rhubarb tart, that is perfect for spring, a Rustic Strawberry Tart with a Vegan Crust that is perfect for non-dairy eaters, as well as a wonderful Apricot Pistachio tart made with dried Blenheim apricots.

Once you have mastered making the pastry and baking a galette or rustic tart you can bake these year-round varying the fruit for each season.

In my next Blog Post, I will cover the always popular method of baking risotto in the Steam oven, and don’t despair if you don’t have one because risotto can also successfully be baked in a Convection oven.

Larissa, Your Convection Enthusiast

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