Cherry Crumb Tart

A darker “French baked” tart

Cherry has been on my mind since that weekend in Washington DC when we set out to see cherry blossoms. The weather was still frigid at the end of April and early May; there were only a few cherry trees in bloom. There might have been only five, if I remember that correctly. The good news was there was a location map to find them.

We’d have to wait until next spring to see the splendid blossoming display of cherry trees. But cherries, the red Bing cherries and the yellow Rainiers, are in season. No need for waiting to enjoy the seasonal bounty of fresh cherries.

Tuesdays with Dorie (TWD) is baking cherry crumb tart from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking Chez Moi this week. Sounds great! Looks like a good recipe to bake along, except one thing…

Taking a second look and reading the fine print in the recipe reveals some daunting and time consuming tasks, necessary for the tart to come together before baking begins. These crucial parts are: 1) making the sweet cookie dough for the tart crust, 2) making the frangipane filling to spread on the bottom of the tart, 3) making the streusel by hand, and 4) pitting one pound of cherries. They can be done separately and ahead of time. That’s the good part. However, there are the time schedules to contend with. The tart dough needs to be refrigerated for at least two hours (or freeze for one hour). Next, the filling needs at least one hour in the refrigerator. Overall, you are not just making a tart. You’re making time commitment before you can set your sight on the finish line. I see why I haven’t been making tarts.

Honestly, that is not the only reason. There are other hurdles I have to overcome. Making the tart crust has been my nemesis; it always seems to find a way to foil my best-laid plan. It gives me pauses before I make another crust. Too crumbly, too uneven, too stiff, you name it… As you can tell, my noisy head had been busy going over these nitty gritty issues.

Decision time. To make the tart or not? To confront or to retreat? I chose the former, but not without the constant questioning and a lot of second-guessing inside my head.

Streusel made with 50% whole wheat flour

I mostly followed Dorie’s recipe as written. I made one change in the streusel. Instead of using all-purpose flour, I used 50% all-purpose and 50% whole-wheat flour. I also used a rectangular pan, as shown in the picture above, instead of a 9-inch square or round tart pan. I let out a sigh of relief when the tart came out of the oven and out of tart pan. I had a big smile on my face when I took a bite of the tart. I like the tart. It is very rich and very sweet. Perhaps, a bit too rich for my blood and arteries.

Can’t give out details of the recipe. (That’s what TWD participants have agreed to abide.) See what others at TWD think about this tart, click here. Some facts about the major ingredients: I spotted 2 1/2 sticks plus 1 tablespoon of butter, and 1 1/2 cups of sugar relative to 3 cups of flour going into the whole tart (including the tart dough, streusel and filling). But who’s counting?

There is always the option to just simply eat a bowl of freshly pitted cherries. And sprinkle some short bread cookies and/or a scoop of ice cream on top and call it a day!

Eat a bowl of cherries
Tart in a rectangular pan



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  • Reply
    August 11, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    I'm glad that you decided to make the tart. Amazingly I made this after work, and I think that the more I male the tart dough, the more readily I can assemble something like this without as much effort. You *could* just eat the cherries, yes, but where the fun in that be? 😇

  • Reply
    August 11, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    Your tart looks perfect, and your pitted cherries look amazing, too. I like your use of whole wheat flour in the streusel!

  • Reply
    Diane Zwang
    August 11, 2015 at 11:25 pm

    This one did have many steps I do agree but we loved it and I would make again. It was rich and you are right a bowl of cherries would be better. I have yet to see cherry blossom tress in bloom, some day.

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 10:45 am

    I agree that the multiple time-consuming tasks were daunting. Your tart looks superb though, and I like its rectangular shape.

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    You are right. I do enjoy the process making the tart.

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    Your tart looks gorgeous Shirley! I laughed when I saw that you totalled the amount of butter that went into it. I knew it was very buttery with my first bite but hadn't thought about the amounts as I was making it. I confess I ate fresh cherries for dessert while everyone else enjoyed the tart.

  • Reply
    kitchen flavours
    August 12, 2015 at 2:04 pm

    Like you, I was counting on the amount of butter when I first read the recipe..but well, once in a blue moon is OK! And I did share some of the tart with a friend! I did reduce the amount of sugar for both the dough and the filling. Dorie's sweet tart dough is amazing, but it is a little too sweet for me, so after reducing the sugar, i like it even better! I've made with blueberries, and after looking at yours and everyone else's tarts, I would love to try with cherries one of these days!

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    What were the amount of sugar in the dough and filling you ended up using?

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    I realized it was an alarming amount of butter because, I couldn't believe it, I almost ran out of butter!

  • Reply
    steph- whisk/spoon
    August 12, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    yes– for sure heavy on the butter and sugar here…I only made a half-sized tart so we wouldn't eat too many pieces. yours looks beautiful in the rectangular pan, and it gives such nice-looking slices.

  • Reply
    August 12, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    Beautiful looking tart! Love the way it looks in the rectangular pan. Definitely worth the time…I made mine for company, so I only had one piece.

  • Reply
    August 14, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    Your tart looks perfect, especially in that tart pan. Happy that you enjoyed it, it was a winner in our house too.

  • Reply
    Approaching Food
    August 17, 2015 at 3:01 am

    Glad you made the tart — it looks delicious! And I love that you used a rectangular pan! I also think that cherries with crumbles and ice cream sound super yum!

  • Reply
    Cathleen | My Culinary Mission
    August 19, 2015 at 11:29 pm

    Beautiful tart! It was a lot of work – if I were to make it again, I would definitely do it over a couple of days. The idea of ice cream with cherries and shortbread sound good too!

  • Reply
    August 23, 2015 at 12:57 am

    I like the idea of using some whole wheat flour in the crumble, for a little extra nuttiness. I sort of gave over an evening to this tart. Well-worth it, but next time I might (uncharacteristically for me) plan ahead and do a couple of the steps a day or two before I'm planning to bake the tart.

  • Reply
    August 23, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    Love the rectangle shape for this tart-looks fantastic!

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