Blackberry Curd Tart Recipe

This Blackberry Curd Tart recipe was created for the reddit 52 weeks of baking challenge, week 48: curds and puddings. It turns frozen blackberries into an elegant dessert balanced between sweet and tart. Perfect for holiday get-togethers or festive dinners any time of the year.

The pecan crust and the blackberry tart as a whole are similar to my rainbow fruit tart, except that here the blackberry curd is the star of the show. That blackberry curd was inspired by and adapted from this New York Times cranberry curd tart with hazelnut crust.

a blackberry curd tart on a baking rack.
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Ingredients

If you’ve got blackberries to use, check out the blackberry apple pie, this blackberry and lemon cake, these oatmeal blackberry muffins, or a vodka sour with blackberry syup.

Like curds and custards? Try my lemon apple curd next.

Please see the recipe card below for complete information on ingredients and quantities.

Variations and substitutions

  • Make the cranberry curd from the NY Times recipe, or sub in raspberries and follow the recipe as is.

Recipe tips and tricks

The New York Times cranberry curd tart recipe uses a gluten-free hazelnut crust. Please feel free to refer to that one if you avoid gluten.

Most any nut or nut flour will work in this recipe. I’ve done pecan, almond, and hazelnuts in nut crusts for pies or tarts. I just find skinning hazelnuts to be one more fussy step.

If using pecans, toast and then grind the pecans in a food processor (Panel #1 below). Process with the flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt (Panel #2).

four panels showing the steps in making the pecan tart dough.

 

Add the cold butter and egg yolk and pulse a few times until the dough starts to come together (Panel #3). Dump it out into a clean bowl or your countertop and combine gently by hand until it comes together as a ball. Flatten it into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap (Panel #4), and let it chill in the refrigerator for at least an our.

If you are planning to use the egg whites for something like macarons where it is important they are perfectly clean, separate each egg over a small, clean bowl. If you get a clean separation, save that egg white into your egg white container and repeat. If you don’t – even if there’s just a tiny bit of yolk in your whites – either toss the white or save it for something where the white doesn’t need to be perfectly clean, like this homemade granola. Separate the next egg over a new small, clean bowl.

I think it’s easiest to roll out nut tart crusts between two pieces of wax paper. To transfer it to the ungreased tart pan, remove the top piece of wax paper and invert the dough onto the pan. Carefully remove the other piece of wax paper and settle the tart crust into the pan, using any extra to cover any holes or tears. Pre-bake per the recipe and allow to cool.

two panels showing the unbaked and baked nut crust.

Making the blackberry purée and removing the blackberry seeds is the fussiest part of this recipe. But it’s something you have to do if you want a smooth, creamy blackberry curd.

If you are using frozen blackberries, let them come to room temperature. Put all of the blackberries into your food processor or blender. Blitz and then pass through a fine mesh sieve or chinois, scraping all of the liquid with a clean spatula into your pot.

It’s the repeated squashing the berries in the sieve and then using the clean spatula to scrape down the seed-free purée that takes all the time and energy. You should end up with about 1 ¼ cups of blackberry purée.

blackberry seeds and solids in a fine mesh strainer.

It’s easiest to make curd in a pan with a sloped side, if you have one. That way you don’t have to worry constantly about scraping out where the side meets the bottom of the pan.

the filled but not yet baked blackberry curd tart.

Note that the time listed here refers to the time until you take the crust and curd out of the oven for the last time. It will need an additional few hours to cool and firm up before you slice it. But I promise that it absolutely is possible to make this blackberry curd tart on the day that you want to serve it.

The final baked tart may have some condensation on it as it cools. Some recipes suggest that you can blot it off with a paper towel if you are careful. I didn’t want to risk it!

the finished blackberry curd tart on a cutting board.

Recipe FAQs

What’s the difference between custard, pastry cream, and curd?

Custard is a generic term for a mixture thickened with eggs. Pastry cream (crème pâtissière) is a subset of custards that contain milk or cream and are thickened with a starch (e.g. cornstarch). Curd is another subset of custards that prominently features fruit juice and/or zest.

Do I have to weigh my ingredients when I bake?

No, you don’t *have* to do anything. But there is so much variation in how people measure that you are much more likely to get a reliable result if you weigh your ingredients. This is the easy-to-use kitchen scale I have used for years.

What do you use for pie weights?

I put a piece of parchment paper in the pan, fill it completely with dried beans, and push the beans to the edges of the crust. These beans can be re-used as pie weights multiple times.

Do I really have to strain the blackberry purée?

Yes. It is a bit of a pain, but it’s worth it. While my blackberry apple pie can stand a bit of crunch from blackberry seeds, this blackberry curd tart is so smooth that the seeds would really impact the taste.

Can I make this ahead of time?

You can make the tart dough as far in advance as you need. Leave the wrapped disk in the fridge for a day or two or the freezer for 3 to 6 months. The curd can be made the night before you are planning to serve the tart. Then prebake the tart dough the next morning and assemble the tart. This blackberry curd tart is best on the day it is assembled, but it will keep in the refrigerator for a few days.

a slice of blackberry curd tart and a fork on a plate.

Or check out other Ugly Duckling Bakery pie and pastry recipes like this strawberry apple pie, rainbow fruit tart, or these strawberry heart pop tarts. You can even make mini blackberry curd tarts with mini pie crust shells or use the base of my graham cracker crust lemon bars.

Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-heart 💜💜💜💜💜 rating in the recipe card below. Let me know how much you loved it, or any problems you had, in the comments section further down.

Recipe

Blackberry Curd Tart Recipe

4 from 4 votes
Category: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Chilling and cooling time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 376kcal
This blackberry curd tart is an elegant dessert, perfect for holiday get-togethers or festive dinners any time of the year. Or just make the blackberry curd and eat it with ice cream, whipped cream, or just with a spoon!
Print Recipe

Equipment

  • Food processor
  • Fine mesh sieve
  • 9 inch tart pan

Ingredients

Nut crust

  • ½ cup pecans or other nut
  • cup (125 grams or 4.4 ounces) bleached, all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 egg yolk

Blackberry curd

  • 12 ounces (about 3½ cups) blackberries defrosted if frozen
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup (200 grams or 7.1 ounces) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup lemon juice (from 2 to 3 lemons)
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 pinch salt

Instructions

Nut crust

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Ready a rack in the middle of the oven.
  • Toast the nuts until they are fragrant. Then let cool slightly and blitz in your food processor until they are finely chopped.
    ½ cup pecans or other nut
  • Add the flour, sugar, and salt and blitz until mixed.
    1¼ cup (125 grams or 4.4 ounces) bleached, all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Add the cold butter and pulse about 10 times until the butter is the size of small peas.
    8 tablespoons (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cold
  • Add the egg yolk and pulse about another 10 times until the mixture just starts to come together.
    1 egg yolk
  • Dump the mixture out into a bowl or your clean countertop and work it lightly with your hands until it comes together into a ball. Flatten it into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and let chill for 30 minutes.
  • Roll the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap and transfer it to the ungreased tart pan. Patch any rips or holes.
  • Chill the tart pan for 15 minutes in the freezer before baking.
  • Line the pan with parchment and fill with pie weights. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the edge of the crust has browned. Carefully remove the parchment and pie weights, prick the crust with a fork, and continue baking about another 10 to 15 minutes, until the crust has browned.
  • Remove and let cool.

Blackberry curd

  • Wipe out your food processor if you haven't already, and add the blackberries. Blitz until they are a thick liquid.
    12 ounces (about 3½ cups) blackberries
  • Pass the blackberries through a fine mesh sieve. To do this, smash the berries against the side of the sieve using a spoon. Use a different, clean spatula or spoon to scrape the strained liquid on the outside of the sieve into a small to medium sized sauce pot. Repeat as many times as necessary. You will have about 1¼ cups of liquid.
  • Crack the eggs and egg yolks into a medium sized bowl and beat lightly.
    2 eggs, 2 egg yolks
  • Add the sugar, lemon juice, butter, and salt to the pot with the blackberry puree and heat over low heat until the butter melts.
    1 cup (200 grams or 7.1 ounces) granulated sugar, ½ cup lemon juice (from 2 to 3 lemons), 8 tablespoons (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into cubes, 1 pinch salt
  • Take about ¼ cup of the warm blackberry mixture and whisk it into the eggs to temper them. Repeat with another ¼ cup of the blackberry mixture, and then add the egg mixture to the pot and whisk in.
  • Turn the heat up just a bit to medium-low and heat while stirring until the mixture has thickened. This will take about 10 to 15 minutes, but please consider this time only as a guide, as it will depend on the pot you use and your cooktop. You should have a thickened mixture with tiny bubbles just starting to form. The classic test of doneness is if you can draw a line with your finger through the curd on the back of your spoon or spatula. If your curd is not cooked enough, it will not set in your tart shell.
  • Let the curd cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally to prevent a skin from forming.

Assembly

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F if not already pre-heated.
  • When both crust and curd are cool to touch, add the blackberry curd to the crust and carefully move it to the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
  • Let cool to room temperature. If the tart is made prior to the day of serving, it should be stored in the refrigerator and brought to room temperature before serving.

Notes

You can press the nut dough into the tart pan if you prefer. I find that rolling gives me a more uniform thickness, and patching any tears or holes is no problem.
Chilling the crust in the freezer and using pie weights for the initial part of baking will help prevent the crust from shrinking.
Making the blackberry curd can be tricky. Please consider the suggested time as only a guide. It’s important to cook it until it is well-thickened or it will not set up in your tart shell.

Nutrition

Calories: 376kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 139mg | Sodium: 81mg | Potassium: 129mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 762IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
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4 Comments

  1. Hi! I am interested in making a tart using the recipe for the crust here… I have an 11inch tart pan. Could you direct me in how to increase the quantities of the ingredients for the crust? Thank you!

    1. Michelle, thanks for the question. I can’t say for certain, since I’ve never tried it, but to increase from 9 inches to 11 inches, you would generally multiply quantities by the increased area = (5.5×5.5)/(4.5×4.5) = 1.5 times. My uncertainty is about the egg yolk – I’d probably use a whole egg, but again I’ve not ever made this an 11 inch pan. So I’d either recommend looking for a recipe that works for it, or cross your fingers and try it! Sorry not to be more help!

  2. 1 star
    This didn’t work for me at all 😞 I think the curd needed to cook longer on the stove, it was completely liquid when I checked at 10 minutes – the top carmelized over the additional 20 minutes I tried cooking it but remained totally liquid. Really sad and maybe just unlucky!

    1. Barbara, thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment. I’m sorry this recipe didn’t work for you – making curd can indeed be tricky. Do you happen to know how long you cooked it on the stove top? And did it get to the stage where it thickly coated your spoon or spatula so you could draw a line through it?

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