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A raspberry tart can be made in several ways. Some cooks prefer to use a standard pie crust for the bottom of the tart, while others prefer puff pastry or a graham cracker crust. Usually the crust needs to be pre-baked. The raspberries can be fresh or frozen, depending on the style of tart. One quick and easy way to make a raspberry tart is to prepare a raspberry pudding or custard. Another option is to spread raspberry jam over the crust and top with fresh berries.
As most raspberry tarts are not baked, a cook will need to blind-bake the crust before assembling the tart so that it is not raw dough. To prevent the pie crust from shrinking during baking, a cook should line the crust with aluminum foil or parchment paper and top with dried beans or pie weights. The weights hold the crust down so that it cannot lose shape or puff up.
Homemade graham cracker crusts should also be pre-baked for about 10 minutes. A cook doesn't need pie weights for graham cracker crusts when making a raspberry tart. If she is using puff pastry, she also does not need weights, as she wants the pastry to expand and puff a bit.
Making the filling may be the most important part of preparing a raspberry tart. The filling can be any number of things, from a raspberry custard to a vanilla pudding, from a cream cheese base to a raspberry jam filling. To make a tart using raspberry jam as a filling, the cook simply needs to spread the jam over the crust and then add fresh berries.
When making a raspberry tart with a custard filling, the cook usually coats the tart crust with a thin layer of jam before adding the custard. Typically, apricot jam is used because it is a pale, neutral color. The jam forms a barrier between the custard and crust, preventing the crust from becoming soggy.
If the raspberries will be used on the tart whole, a cook should stick with fresh berries. She can use frozen berries if blending them into a custard. The fresh berries should be relatively uniform in size and shouldn't have any blemishes because they are serving a decorative purpose. Some cooks prefer to cover the entire top of the tart with a layer of berries, while others simply arrange the berries around the edge. The pointy end of the berries should face up so that the fruit is balanced and not likely to fall over.
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