Strawberry Summer Dessert

strawberry4

strawberry2

As I flipped through the pages of Bon Appetit’s May issue, I couldn’t help but be taken by their photograph of this amazingly scrumptious looking dessert. The “Rhubarb and Raspberry Crostata” recipe offered everything I look for in a summer dessert- a flaky, golden crust filled with mouth watering tart raspberies. As it turned out, I had just accidentaly double-ordered strawberries from Fresh Direct (I also double-ordered whole milk, leaving me with 4 cartons instead of 2- why am I always doing this??) So, I knew that I had to do something with the strawberries before they went bad. I had all the ingredients needed for the dough in my pantry (white flour, whole wheat flour, sugar, kosher salt, butter, egg, and milk), so I decided to nix the rhubabrb because I didn’t have any or want to go out and get some, and just replace the raspberries with lots and lots of strawberries. And that’s pretty much how I ended up with what my husband called “the best dessert you’ve ever made”. The dough in this dessert is really the show-stopper. The addition of 1/2 a cup of whole wheat flour adds a rustic, nutty effect, which really makes a difference. Before baking, the dough is sprinkled with raw sugar (an ingredient I did not have in my pantry, but I sent my husband to the coffeeshop next door to grab a handful of “Sugar in the Raw” packets- really a sinch).
For the original recipe, go to  http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2011/05/rhubarb-and-raspberry-crostata

Here’s my adaptation of the recipe:
Strawberry Crostata
8-10 servings

Crust
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 sticks chilled unsalted butter, cubed
1 egg
1 tablespoon whole milk

Filling
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 pints fresh strawberries, stemmed and halved
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1 egg, beaten
2 packets “sugar in the raw”

  • Combine both flours, sugar, and salt in a processor; blend for 5 seconds. Add butter; pulse until butter is reduced to pea-size pieces. Whisk egg and milk in a small bowl to blend; add to processor and pulse until moist clumps form. Gather dough into a ball; flatten into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap; chill at least 1 1/2hours. Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.

Dissolve the cornstarch in 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl, set aside.
In a heavy saucepan, combine the strawberries, sugar, and lemon juice. Stir together and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook, covered for 5 minutes. Uncover, stir in the cornstarch mixture, and cook until the strawberries soften a bit, and juices are released to form a thick sauce surrounding the strawberries, about 5 minutes. Cool.

strawberry1

Preheat oven to 400°. Roll out dough on floured parchment paper to 12″ round; brush with beaten egg. Mound filling in center of crust; gently spread out, leaving 1 1/2″ border. Gently fold edges of dough over filling, pleating as needed. Brush border with egg; sprinkle with raw sugar. Slide parchment with crostata onto a large rimmed baking sheet and bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly, about 45 minutes. Let crostata cool on baking sheet on a rack. Transfer crostata to a platter, cut into wedges, and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.