Loretta Sebastiani

Loretta Sebastiani
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Fruit tart, Italy-style
( Crostata di frutta )

Authentic Italian recipe

Fruit tart is one of the most versatile desserts I know. Its recipe is very easy if you know how to do short pastry. On the contrary people who have little time can safely rely on ready-made dough that nowadays is of reasonable quality. It's a tasty cake, good for all ages, ideal for ceremonies, birthdays and all the holidays in the year. Use seasonal fruits and be careful in summer because custard may cause problems.

difficulty: medium

time: 1 h 50 minutes

calories: 386 (kCal)

Ingredients / Serves 12

  • Short pastry (double the doses of my recipe)
  • Pastry cream (halve the doses of my recipe)
  • Assorted seasonal fresh fruit
  • Powdered cake jelly
  • Unsalted butter for oiling the baking pan
  • Dried beans
  • Foil for lining your tart shell
medium difficulty
preparation: 60 minutes
cooking: 40-50 minutes
total: 1 h 50 minutes
How many calories in a serving?
Calories: 386 (kcal) 20 % - 1613 (kJ)
Protein: 6.2 (g) 13 % GDA
Total fat: 16.3 (g) 24 % GDA
Total carbohydrate: 55.9 (g) 21 % GDA
Sugars: 28.0 (g) 32 % GDA

Download free PDF version (443 download).

Fruit tart recipe

Preparation and cooking

  • - Prepare your tart shell.
    Make short pastry following my recipe but remember to double my doses or the recipe you prefer. Link to my recipe below!
    Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
    Butter very well a 10 1/2in diameter tart pan with removable bottom.
    Roll your dough out on lightly floured surface to 1/2 inch thick round.
    Transfer it to the pan.
    Crimp the excess dough to make a uniform edge with a fork or your fingers.
    Pierce the bottom of your tart 15 to 20 times with a fork.
    Line your tart with baking paper.
    Fill it with dried beans or pie weights.
    Bake, 20 to 25 minutes.
    Cooking time is very important: in fact your shell must be neither hard nor dry.
    Transfer to rack and cool completely.
    Then remove beans and baking paper.
    You can prepare your shell in advance too, the day before.
  • - Assemble your tart.
    Place your tart on a large serving plate.
    Prepare pastry cream following my directions (link below), but remember to halve my doses, or your favorite recipe.
    When it is cold, spoon it on the bottom of your tart and smooth with a knife.
    Meanwhile wash and slide the seasonal fruit you've chosen.
    The tart in the picture has been filled with 2 kiwis, a banana, some blackberries, 2 red plums and white grapes.
    Arrange fruit in concentric circles on the top of the pastry cream.
    Prepare cake jelly and let it warm up.
    Then brush it over your fruit.
    You need this step to preserve beauty and freshness of all fruit.

Just before serving

  • - Chill at least 2 hours before serving.



  • - You can choose your prefered fruit according to the season. In winter you can use pineapple in syrup with candied cherries, kiwis and tangerines or a combination of tangerines, shelled walnuts, kiwis and bananas. The photo shows you the version I usually make in late summer and early fall. Strawberries could be chosen in late spring and summer and so on.
    Following the season is important because if your fruit is not full of flavor your tart will be less good. Use ripe fruit at the right point, neither too firm nor undone!
  • - I generally arrange all my sliced fruit in concentric circles to be able to cut slices with the same assortment of fruit for all.
    Another tip. I arrange my fruit in only one layer so it's easy to brush it with jelly. This step is important to preserve the beauty and freshness of fruit as I've just written.
  • - If you have no time, you can use frozen or ready-made short pastry and powdered pastry cream (you can prepare it dissolving the powder in milk according to the directions on the package). But obviously your tart will have a different taste.
  • - If you don't find powdered cake jelly or you don't want to use it, you can prepare the glaze in another way. Warm 1/2 cup apple or raspberry jelly and some tablespoons cold water until melted, in a small saucepan over low heat or in a custard cup in the microwave. Then spoon or brush your glaze over the fruit.

Menu planning

  • - Fruit tart is perfect to close every full menu all year round, even in summer when it's very hot provided that it is kept in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
  • - It's also a good choice for a meal, buffet-style provided that your short pastry isn't too hard otherwise it may becomes difficult to eat this cake on a plate, standing.
  • - Now an idea of mine for an Italian full menu for all, from young to old people, when you have to celebrate a special occasion. Links to all suggested recipes in the next paragraph!
    Starter. Mini pizzas and tartine (canapes) matched with a good glass of wine or fruit juices if there are children
    First course. I'd suggest baked pasta, the favorite dish for us Italians. This is a very gourmet dish: Neapolitan macaroni timbale with little meatballs in the tomato sauce!
    Second course. I'd choose rolled turkey breast stuffed with different ingredients or filled and rolled turkey thigh if there are children or another roast meat accompanied by Russian salad as side dish.
    Dessert. This fruit tart.
    What about it?

Useful links for this recipe

Healthy eating

  • - Despite its simplicity fruit tart has a lot of calories, fat and sugar. Everything depends on the richness of its basic ingredients (eggs, butter, flour and sugar), not from the fruit, obviously. Very little can be done to lower these values. So my advice, as usual when I write about desserts, is moderation :))
  • - Fiber per serving: only 1.3 grams


What's the right wine for " Fruit tart, Italy-style "?

It's perfect a good sweet sparkling wine like Asti Spumante, the best bubbles in Piedmont according to me and my husband. Don't match any brut sparkling wine!