Berry tart

Looking for a quick and easy alternative to pie this summer? Try a tart.

Looking for a quick and easy alternative to pie this summer? Try a tart.

The open-pastry dessert can be served cold or baked and is filled with any choice of fruit, such as strawberries, blackberries, cherries, kiwi, mango, apples, bananas or pineapples with an open faced crust, according to Chef Ralph Filipelli.

“When you make a tart they’ll slice the fruits and arrange them in a spiral all around where a pie is more kind of home style or rustic,” said Filipelli.

Frozen or fresh fruit works for your homemade tart.

“For frozen fruit, cooking and freezing do the same thing. Freezing the fruit makes it softer and essentially does the same thing if you bake it, Filipelli said. “The best frozen fruits to use for tarts are cherries, blackberries and blueberries. Fresh fruits to use would be kiwi, mango, pineapple and apples.”

Filipelli said for a tart crust you can make your own or buy it from the store.

“It’s really your personal preference on what you want. Some people prefer homemade crust, but a frozen crust will do the trick as well,” he said. “Frozen crusts might actually be better in terms of holding the tart together.”

Filipelli said tarts are great for summer because they can be served hot or cold.

“With fruit tarts you can put in your filling, put whipped creamed on top and put it in the fridge or you can bake the fruit and then put whipped cream on top,” he said. “It’s a lot simpler than pie and it can last longer.”

Filipelli shared his recipe for a Cherry and Berry Tart:

Cherry and berry tart

Homemade or pre-made pie crust

3 tablespoons corn starch

1/4 cup cold water

2 cups frozen cherries (or berries of your choice)

1 cup sugar

Put pie crust in tart pan. Dissolve corn starch in water, then mix in sugar and cherries. Simmer in pan until “glassy.” Top crust with fruit mixture. Chill in fridge for a few hours or bake tart.