adlo for child-traveling and tart-baking

15 06 2010

In my past work life, we used the term “AdLo” quite a bit. It means advance logistics – planning for and preparing all of materials/activities/assignments that are necessary before an event can successfully take place. It is not my best skill, but it is a learned one.

And then when Bebe was an infant, we quickly learned that meeting scheduled events or social engagements outside the home required advanced preparation and a lot of time. It gets much better with practice, but today our preparations just fell apart. Repeatedly.

One shoe goes missing. Toys go flying. Cup of water on the floor. Pants go missing. Houdini child? Take time to read a book. Then another. And a third (because we do love reading). Another cup of water is spit all over oneself. New shirt. Take time to dance. Take time to play. Time out for tantrums. Take time for listening to stories. Missing shoe found. Bag packed. To the door!

And somehow more than two hours have passed, when really I had planned for only forty minutes. I really did not account for young tantrums, they always surprise me. AdLo for meeting our playgroup at the park? Epic lateness. We completely missed our lovely group. But Bebe and I did enjoy a little time listening to the musicians at the park before rain drove everyone home.

And in all of that there was dancing, reading, some awfully cute Bebe moments, and a baked shortbread summer berry tart. AdLo for shortbread berry tart? Success. Delicious success.

berry tart closeup

This was inspired by a gluten-free tart made by Heather at Shivaya Naturals. Lacking marscapone and gluten-free ingredients for trying her recipe, I resorted to a tart with pastry cream. I love her idea for using shortbread as the tart crust. Superyum!

I suggest making the pastry cream first (and maybe a day in advance), since it is the most time-consuming part of this recipe. And this is #11/100 in my year of 100 New Desserts.

Shortbread Summer Berries Tart (serves 6-8)
inspired by a similar but gluten-free recipe from Heather at Shivaya Naturals

1 C pastry cream (see recipe below)
1 dozen medium to large strawberries, washed and tops cut off
1 C blueberries, washed
1 shortbread tart crust (see recipe below)

Make pastry cream and tart crust. Allow time for both to cool properly.

Place cooled tart crust on a cutting board or plate (whichever it will be served upon). A large cutting board makes serving & cleanup easy and avoids marking up a dish or serving plate when cutting off slices of the tart.

Use a spatula to spread pastry cream over the top of the crust. Make sure to get as close to the edge as possible. You do not have to use all of the pastry cream, judge for yourself depending on the sweetness of your pastry cream & berries.You’ll want enough to anchor the berries but not so much that you just get a big mouthful of cream when you bite the tart.

Make sure your berries are all washed and dried. Scatter half the blueberries across the top. Then add half the strawberries with cut side down. Cut any really large strawberries in half again and arrange them in any gaps. Fill in the rest with the remaining blue berries. Serve and enjoy!

If you are not serving soon, make sure to keep the tart cool in the refrigerator.

berry tart

Pastry Cream (makes a little over 1 Cup)
adapted from recipe in Baking by Dorie Greenspan

1 C heavy whipping cream or whole milk
3 egg yolks
1/4 C sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 Tbsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp unsalted butter

You will need a whisk. I often improvise in the kitchen, but I really do not know if you can make this without a whisk.

Bring whipping cream to a boil – you can use the stove and a small pot or put a bowl in the microwave for 1 minute.

Place egg yolks in a small pot or saucepan. Gradually stir in sugar and cornstarch, whisk well until the mixture thickens and the cornstarch is blended in. You may still see little bits of cornstarch, that’s okay, just make sure any obvious blobs are poked with the whisk and blended in.

Add 1/4 C of the hot cream to the yolk mixture and stir. If you add the hot liquid all at once, the yolk will “cook” and your pastry cream will fail. So start slowly and continue adding the rest of the cream slowly until it’s all in the pot.

Place the pot on the stove on medium heat. It’s still very liquidy and must thicken. Whisk constantly and all around the pot – especially the middle and sides. The thickening takes a few minutes to begin, but then it happens all at once, and you need to make sure it doesn’t burn. So whisk well and do not turn away from the pot.

After the mixture has become pasty/creamy, remove the pot from heat. Add the vanilla extract and whisk in until well blended. Cut up the butter and add the pieces in a few at a time, stirring and letting them melt before adding the next few pieces. Voila! You have pastry cream.

berry tart pastry cream

The pastry cream needs to cool before you can use it, so scrape it into a bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface and squish out any air, then place the covered bowl in the refrigerator to chill – about 30 minutes.

Making pastry cream is a bit fiddly, but easy once you get the hang of it. You can make this the day before you want to use it, just keep it well sealed in the refrigerator.

Shortbread Tart Crust (makes 1 crust)
adapted from recipe in The King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion

1/2 C (1 stick, 4 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 C sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1.5 C unbleached flour

Preheat oven at 300 degrees F. Grease tart pan or springform pan with a bit of butter.

Combine butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla in a bowl, mix until well blended. Slowly add flour, make sure to scrape down sides with a spatula so that all of the flour is blended into the dough.

Place dough in the prepped pan, press down with spatula or fingers so that it is an even thickness across the pan and is raised slightly at the edges. If using a tart pan, make sure each the dough is pressed well into the scalloped edges.

Bake 40 minutes or until lightly bronwed. Remove pan from heat and let sit 10 minutes.

berry tart shortbread crust

Then lift bottom of tart pan (or springform pan) from the sides. Carefully slide tart off the bottom piece onto a wire rack and let cool.




5 responses

15 06 2010

Now that looks absolutely delicious!!

16 06 2010

This tart looks so good. Thanks for the great recipe. Bebe will get through this and then it becomes a distant memory in your mind. Hang in there. Be well.

16 06 2010


I’ve never heard the term “AdLo” before, but I can appreciate it, and will likely begin to use it. As I was walking out the door this morning, I was thinking about how much AdLo I have to put into each day. Right now, I have 3 very long days each week, and the AdLo for each is overwhelming.
It’s funny that we were both thinking of about this.

Miss you and cute little bebe.

16 06 2010

Ah. It gets better, the leaving the house thing.

Also, it gets worse. In totally different ways.

Glad you got to spend some QT at the park though.

17 07 2010

Yum, looks delicious!

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