Last updated on December 9th, 2015
I made this unusual tart for a small brunch party last weekend, and it was devoured — with gusto — in a flash. Not to worry — I made the same tart this morning, so that you could taste it, too!
The tart has just three components: a no-roll Pâte brisée sucrée crust, a simple cream cheese-and-orange zest filling, and a glistening crown of marmalade-glazed orange slices. It’s easy to assemble, pretty to serve, and oh, so scrumptious to eat.
If I were you, I’d serve this rustic poetry for breakfast, brunch, or afternoon tea. Here’s the step-by-step recipe:
To start, make a batch of Pâte brisée sucrée (see recipe in printable version below), and pour it into a fluted, 9-inch removable-bottom tart pan.
No removable-bottom tart pan for you? Get one. I purchased my sturdy French-made model for less than $12 from Amazon.
Use the bottom and sides of a measuring cup to press the buttery crumbs against the bottom and sides of the pan.
Freeze the dough for at least 30 minutes, then dock the bottom (not the sides) all over with the tines of a fork.
This next step might not be necessary after you freeze the crust, but I do it anyway: Cover the shell with aluminum foil, and add pie weights. My pie weights are simply dried beans. I store them in a plastic tub, and use them over and over again.
Bake the crust on a pastry sheet for 15 minutes. Then remove the beans and foil, and bake until the sides begin to color, and the bottom of the crust feels dry — 10-15 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes.
Onto the filling!
Fling 2 blocks of softened cream cheese into a green bowl…
Add some confectioners’ sugar…
And the grated zest of 2 medium-size navel oranges. I hope you have a microplane zester thingy.
Using a stout spoon, briskly beat the cream cheese mixture until it looks as smooth and silky as a beagle’s ears.
Scoop the mixture into the tart shell, and spread it out with an offset spatula. Then pop the works into the fridge for 2 hours (or overnight).
On serving day, peel 2 or 3 medium-size navel oranges, removing as much of the pith as possible.
I know what the Food Police are thinking:
KEVIN, THE PITH CONTAINS VITAMIN C!
Pffft. Our crust contains 1 stick of butter. And our cream cheese filling is hardly diet food. So at this point, we probably shouldn’t worry about some scant nutrients found in the bitter pith of an orange.
Slice the oranges crosswise into thin (about 1/8-inch-thick) rounds…
And then remove the tough center-pith from each round.
Arrange the orange donuts in some decorative manner on top of the tart. Or, just toss them on capriciously, and tell your guests that you’ve made a “rustic” tart.
My orange buddies arranged themselves in overlapping concentric circles. Well, they tried their best.
To make the glistening glaze, simply melt some orange marmalade (or apricot preserves) in the microwave, and then strain it through a wire-mesh sieve. Use the back of a spoon to push the syrup through the sieve. Brush the syrup all over the oranges, and then unmold the tart onto a plate or platter.
Are you ready for this next step?
Are you really, really, ready?
Cut yourself a great big slice of this sweet, citrussy sonnet, and wash it down with coffee, tea, or my own beverage of choice: a big honking bottle of chilled Prosecco.
Well. I hope you’ll try this tart some day. And if you don’t care for oranges because they remind you of a 1959 Miss America runner-up who hawked citrus for a growers’ association until someone threw a pie in her face on live television, well…feel free to top the tart with other fruits or berries. The crust and filling are wonderful all on their own!
And here, just to make your life a little easier, is a printable version of the above:
A Pâte brisée sucrée crust, a sumptuous cream cheese filling, a glimmering crown of glazed orange slices -- there's nothing about this tart that isn't wonderful. Serve it for breakfast, brunch, or afternoon tea.
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 stick (113g) unsalted butter, diced
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 2 blocks cream cheese (16 oz total)
- 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
- The grated zest of 2 medium-size navel oranges
- 2-3 medium-size navel oranges, peeled, and pith removed
- Orange marmalade -- about 6 oz
- Put the flour, sugar, salt and butter into the work-bowl of a food processor. Pulse 10 times or so, just to break up the butter. Add the beaten egg, and process until the mixture resembles small peas.Pour the crumbly mixture into a 9-inch-diameter, removable-bottom tart pan. Use your fingers or the bottom of a measuring cup to press the crumbs against the bottom and sides of the pan. Freeze for 30 minutes or longer.
- Center the oven rack, and preheat oven to 425°F. Dock the bottom of the crust with the tines of a fork, then cover with aluminum foil and pie weights (I use 1 lb of dried beans for weights).Bake for 15 minutes, then remove foil and beans and bake until the sides color, and the bottom crust feel dry -- about 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
- Put the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and orange zest into a medium-size bowl. Beat with a spoon until smooth and silky. Pour the cream cheese mixture into the tart shell, and refrigerate until set -- about 2 hours or overnight. If chilling overnight, cover loosely with plastic wrap.
- Just before serving, arrange the sliced oranges in concentric circles on top of the tart. Then heat the marmalade for 1 minute in the microwave (or on the stovetop). Strain the syrup through a wire-mesh sieve. Brush the syrup all over the oranges. Then unmold the tart, and dive right in!
Note: This tart should be served soon after the orange slices are added and glazed.
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Also from Kevin’s Kitchen:
Quinoa Stuffing with Leeks, Sage, and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Angelic Zucchini Fritters
Sunday Brunch: Make-Ahead Blueberry Streusel Strata (GF)
Mary in Iowa says
Oh, My! I was just thinking pineapple upside down cake, but I think I’ve changed directions. Love anything with cream cheese, anything with oranges, and nearly anything with pie crust. Also loved that Ms. Bryant got the well deserved cream pie in the face, but it was a terrible waste of pie. Hope it was filled with shaving cream and tasted vile. Yes, as with everyone, I have my evil side. 🙂
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Hi Mary – I think this tart could work with pineapples, too. Just a thought!
Mary in Iowa says
I think that tart could work with almost any kind of fruit. I’ve made a similar pie with the cream cheese beaten with pineapple preserves and topped with strawberries. Great combination.
The Bryant pie got thrown here in Des Moines, and when I think back in history, I’m pretty sure it was a fruit pie, not cream. A sort of double entendre pie for an innocent word used in a derogatory way. Too many people, beyond my ability to fathom, still think she was a hero. I had almost forgotten all about her until you mentioned the incident.
Martha Robinson says
Oh my, this looks beautiful and delicious. Thanks, too, for the waltz down memory lane. I love your recipes (and everything else you do).
Beverly, zone 6, eastern PA says
You slay me.
Oh orange! Salivary glands working over-time!
It looks wonderful !. Now my mind is racing trying to figure out how to convert it to gluten and dairy free.
I know ,I know , this new dietary restriction thingy is a pain . .
silky as a beagles ear is perfect. The crust conversion will be easy I think ..just use Bob’s Red Mill shortbread instead , Maybe a cashew cream for the filling , not tofu ,although that would work for folks who eat soy. I’m going to be really hungry by the time I figure this one out
Melissa Sater says
Kevin, I love receiving your emails! It’s like reading about your favorite celebrity couple – only sassy instead of trashy. Dynasty meets Donna Reed! Tee hee.
Thank you Kevin!! This may end up like the tomato pie recipe – when I made it every week for a month!
Laura Rankin says
Kevin, Thank you for both the recipe and the inevitable chuckle. Nothing better than reading your blog with my late morning coffee. I plan to make this. I’ll have to change the crust from flour-based to buttery, ground pecans but I have a recipe that has worked well with a lemon cheesecake dessert.
Kevin, love your colorful comments. Such a friendly gesture. Wish you lived in my neighborhood!
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Melissa Sater – Dynasty meets Donna Reed? Great analogy!
This will be made for guests this weekend – we love oranges and this will be a real hit. Thanks again. Sophie will not be tasting this as dogs shouldn’t eat citrus…… I’ll give her some yogurt instead – or raspberries….
looks fantastic! I will try this.
ingmarie peck says
This looks so good ,got to try it. If it is in class with your lemon tart it will be awesome.
Thank you for baking for/with us.
Catharine R. says
This tart is to die for! Mine didn’t look as pretty as Kevin’s because I didn’t remove the little white “eye” from the orange slices, and no marmalade in the house so I couldn’t make the glistening glaze. But I will make the tart again and again, maybe with oranges, or maybe with blueberries. So good!
rosemary freitas says
This reminds me of a tart we use to buy over 30 years ago. Instead of oranges it was mixed fresh fruit arranged like jewels in concentric circles. Think a ring of grapes, then a ring of raspberries, what ever was available. glaze it and hello gorgeous! Kevin thank you for jogging my memory. It will be done.
Lovely, lovely, lovely tart.
Also, thanks for the photo of Miss Lily’s smooth and silky profile.
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Hi Catharine R. – So glad you tried this fun tart, and that it worked out for you. You are right — the topping-possibilities are endless!
Julie R says
This looks so good, can’t wait to try it. It was so nice of Lily to lend you her ear = ) what a little sweetie she is.
Brenda Johnson says
My oh my oh my!!!! How lovely Kevin arriving with this tart, was to my eye!!! Not only is this tart strikingly beautiful….it will dazzle your tastebuds too!!! Fresh juicy orange slices, creamy filling lively with orange zest…perfectly balanced sweetness….and crisp buttery crust…oh SO good!!! Thanks for sharing Kevin!!!
Janet Metzger says
I am dreaming of……..
Christine Carpenter says
Hmmm, perhaps a splash of grand mariner in the cream cheese?
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Hi Brenda – So glad you enjoyed the tart!
Hi Christine – A tablespoon or 2 of Grand Marnier? Excellent idea!
Kevin, you have a wicked sense of humor…and I love it! I don’t remember why Ms Bryant got the pie, but I certainly remember thinking she deserved it.
Your pie will be next thing I will make. Thanks.
Love your blog! You are so entertaining! And your recipes are delish! Thanks!