Tell your kids that they can be the “King and Queen of Tarts” when they make this gem of a summer dessert. The fresh fruit ingredients from your local market or fruit stand are luscious and good by themselves, but when they’re combined with a cookie base, you’ll have a “WOW” can’t-miss finale to a barbecue or outdoor get-together with friends.
These cookie fruit tarts are super simple to assemble and look “tres francais,” but there’s no from-scratch pastry with mini fluted rims that you have to fuss over. Instead, the easy recipe starts with good, large sugar cookies you purchase at your bakery or grocery store.
FRESH FRUIT COOKIE TARTS
8 large sugar cookies or your
favorite plain round cookie
8 ounce package of cream
1/3 cup white or vanilla chips
(find them in the baking section
of your store)
Assorted fresh fruit and berries
for toppings, such as blueberries,
raspberries, strawberries, cherries
and sliced peaches and plums,
washed and dried
1/4 cup currant jelly or powdered sugar (optional)
1. Set cookies on a work surface
such as a cutting board. Place
cream cheese in a medium-size
2. In a microwave-safe dish,
melt chips, spoon into cream
cheese and stir until smooth.
3. Spread the mixture evenly
over the cookies. Let kids arrange
the fresh fruit and berries in pretty
designs on the top.
4. Meanwhile, if you would like
a glaze, an adult should melt the
jelly in a saucepan. Cool. Let kids
drizzle or lightly brush with a pastry brush over the fruit to glaze the
tarts. Or, dust over each tart with
5. Arrange on a serving platter.
— Get creative with the presentation and decorate the serving
platter or top the tarts with coconut
flakes, sprigs of mint leaves, tiny blooms of edible flowers or fresh lavender.
— Make a larger quantity of bite-size tarts using packaged cookies such as gingersnaps.
— Instead of using cookies, make a larger single tart. Press prepared piecrust from the refrigerated section of your market on the base and sides of a 9-inch tart pan. Prick sides and bottom. Bake according to package directions. Cool. Spread cream cheese mixture on the base, arrange fruit attractively, and brush on the glaze.
Donna Erickson’s award-winning series “Donna’s Day” is airing on public television nationwide. To find more of her creative family recipes and activities, visit www.donnasday.com and link to the NEW Donna’s Day Facebook fan page.