We spent Independence Day at our cousins' house last weekend. They have a fantastic house, and it's a great venue for fireworks, with views of two different displays. We had a true Southern California barbeque - with a barbeque of carne asada with all the fixings. There were also burgers, hot dogs, rice, frijoles, a cheese platter, and some great potato salad, but those were afterthoughts for me. Truly, there is little that can stand between me and a taco (or three).
As the designated dessert-maker for our family gatherings, I put together this quick berry tart. The crust is taken almost exactly from Baking: From My Home to Yours - I use the pâte sablée with ground almonds, and I think I fiddle with it somehow, but I can't remember how. I filled it with a vanilla pastry cream and then topped it with fresh berries.
Tarts are one of my favorite desserts. There are endless possibilities for crusts and fillings - I am partial to the almond crust whenever it will fit with the filling - and I love the way such a simple dessert can look so impressive.