If it’s a tropical dessert you’re looking for, then this Mango Tart is a sure thing. It looks beautiful, it’s filled with a soft custard filling made from scratch and the top is loaded with fresh, sliced mango.

The new year hits and all I can think of is bright, fresh, tropical desserts. This homemade mango curd is a favourite around here as is this mango coconut cheesecake.

A tart topped with slices of mango on a wooden board

This beautiful tart is just 3 layers of easy, homemade deliciousness and you’d be surprised the simple ingredients you need to make it.

The pastry base is crisp and the perfect contrasting texture to the soft custard filling. The mango in this dessert is all in the form of slices arranged over the top of the tart after the custard sets.

Why not try it with this refreshing Mango Daiquiri.

What you’ll need

You probably have everything you need for this tart on hand, except maybe the mangoes.

Ingredients for mango tart on a white marble surface
Ingredients for mango tart
  • Mangoes: Make sure the mangoes are ripe. You can check by smelling the end where the stalk is – it should have a strong mango smell and the mango should not be hard.
  • Milk: It’s best to use whole milk for the custard for flavour, however light milk or even non-dairy milks will work.
  • Eggs: These will help thicken the custard and give it it’s rich flavour.
  • Cornflour (cornstarch): This is used to thicken and help set the custard.

Butter, flour, sugar, salt and vanilla round out the group of ingredients.

Handy tools to have

  • Food processor: It’s not absolutely necessary but it makes the pastry crust easy.  
  • 8 inch fluted tart tin with removable base: this style of tin makes it very easy to get the tart out of the tin.
  • Heavy based saucepan: I only use this style of saucepan now. They distribute the heat more evenly so that the contents are less likely to burn.
  • Pie weights: If you don’t have them you can just use rice or dried beans but make sure to keep them only for this purpose afterwards.

What is pâté sucrée?

Pâté sucrée is the French term for a particular style of sweet shortcrust pastry. Rather than having flaky layers like the shortcrust pastry I normally use, this pastry is almost cookie-like in texture and slightly sweeter. It’s also incredibly delicious and can literally be made into cookies.

To make the tart shell;

Blending ingredients for pate sucree in a food processor
Making the pastry dough
  1. Start by blitzing together flour, sugar, salt and butter in a food processor (image 1) until it looks like bread crumbs.
  2. Add an egg (image 2) and pulse until it’s all well combined and clumping (image 3).
  3. Form the dough into a disk shape (image 4) and refrigerate for at least ½ an hour before rolling it out to fit your tart tin.
Line a tart tin with pastry
Making the tart shell
  1. Roll out the dough very thinly, then transfer it to the tart tin (image 5).
  2. Press it into all the corners, then roll the rolling pin (image 6) across the top to cut off the overhang.
  3. Prick the base with a fork (image 7), then chill for 20 minutes.
  4. Line the tart case with baking paper, then pie weights or rice (image 8) and bake it for 20 minutes, followed by 20 minutes without the weights.

The custard filling

The custard filling is essentially crème patissiere (pastry cream) and you’ll be surprised how easy it is to make.

Mixing up creme patissiere in a saucepan, then pouring into a tart shell
Making the pastry cream filling
  1. You’ll start by heating some milk, sugar, butter and vanilla until steaming.
  2. In a bowl, you’ll beat together eggs and cornflour (cornstarch) until pale, then very slowly drizzle in the hot milk whilst still mixing (image 9).
  3. Pour it all back into the saucepan (image 10) and then stir constantly over low heat with a whisk until it’s very thick (image 11).
  4. This gets poured straight into the tart shell (image 12) and then chilled until completely set.

The mango decoration

The mango in this mango tart, comes in the form of loads of sliced fresh mangoes on top. You need two large mangoes for this.  

  1. Peel the mangos: First peel the mangoes just using a regular vegetable peeler. Be careful as they do get slippery.
  2. Slice the mangoes: Cut the cheeks off, either side of the stone, then lay them flat side down on a chopping board. Cut them into lots of very thin slices.
  3. Arrange the mango slices: You may notice as you try move the mango slices around, they will slide against each other and straight away you’ll see how the decoration on top is achieved. Slide groups of 5-6 slices against each other, then curve them and place them randomly all over the top of the tart.

You can serve the tart immediately or let it chill for 1-2 days. The longer it sits though, the drier the mango will start to look, so the fresher it is served, the better.

RELATED: Mango Coconut Cheesecake

Top down view of a tart covered in sliced mango sitting on a wooden board

Tips and tricks

  • Don’t boil the milk: You just want the milk mixture to be hot enough that it’s steaming.
  • Add the milk slowly: Make sure just to drizzle the milk into the eggs slowly at the same time as you’re whisking otherwise you may end up with scrambled eggs.  
  • Let the filling set before topping and serving. It needs to set so that it’s firm enough to hold the weight of the mangoes.

Can I make it ahead

Mango tart is best served fresh, however, as long as you store it in an airtight container in the fridge, it should keep well for 1-2 days before the mangoes start looking a little worse for wear.

You can make the pastry dough ahead of time and store it in the freezer for up to 2 months, wrapped well in plastic wrap. You can also make and bake the tart shell and store it in the freezer for 1-2 months.

The custard filling can be made 2-3 days ahead, just make sure to give it a good whisk up so that it’s smooth before adding it to the tart shell.

A slice of mango tart on a small grey plate

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Top down view of a tart covered in sliced mango sitting on a wooden board

Mango Tart

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This stunning Mango Tart with it’s custard filling and fresh mango decoration is an unforgettable Summer dessert. All made from scratch, the crisp pâté sucrée crust is the perfect crisp texture for the soft, delicate filling.

Ingredients

FOR THE TART SHELL

  • 150 g plain (all purp) flour (1 cup + 1 tbsp / 5.3oz)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 115 g unsalted butter, cubed and chilled (1 stick / 1⁄2 cup)
  • 1 large egg

FOR THE FILLING AND TOPPING

  • 3 ½ cups milk (875ml / 29.5 fl oz)
  • 57 g butter
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 100 g granulated white sugar (1/2 cup / 3.5oz)
  • ½ cup cornflour (cornstarch)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolks, from large eggs
  • 2 mangoes, thinly sliced

Equipment

Instructions
 

For the tart shell:

  • In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour sugar and salt. Blitz to combine.
  • Add the cubes of butter and process until the mixture looks like bread crumbs.
  • Add the egg yolks and process until it starts to form large clumps.
  • Knead the dough very lightly to a smooth disk, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for half an hour. Don’t knead too long.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / 160C fan forced. Line the base of an 8 inch fluted tart tin with baking paper. Use a tin with at least 1 inch high sides as the pastry will shrink down a little.
  • Sit the pastry on a lightly floured bench top, then dust a little flour over the top. Roll out to roughly a 10.5 inch circle (or until the pastry is about 3mm thick)
  • Lay the rolling pin on top of the pastry in the middle, pull the far side of the pastry over the top, then lift it to transfer to the tin. Gently press it into the corners and up against the sides. Roll the rolling pin over the top of the tart tin to cut off the excess. Prick the base of the tart shell with a fork all over then place in the freezer for 20 minutes to firm up.
  • Line the base of the tart shell with baking paper then fill with pie weights or rice.
  • Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the baking paper and rice, and use foil to cover the edges so they don’t get too brown. Bake for a further 20 minutes until the bottom looks cooked and dry.
  • Allow to cool completely before filling with pastry cream.

FOR THE FILLING

  • Pour the milk into a heavy based saucepan, and add the butter, sugar and vanilla, then heat on very low heat until steaming, stirring regularly.
  • While the milk mixture is heating, whisk together the cornflour, egg and egg yolks until pale yellow.
  • Once the milk mixture is steaming, drizzle it slowly into the eggs while whisking constantly. Don’t pour it too quickly or the heat will scramble the eggs.
  • Return the entire mix to the saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring with a balloon whisk constantly, until it gets very thick. This will happen quite suddenly after about 5 minutes, so it’s important to keep stirring so you don't get lumpy custard.
  • The custard is thick enough, when it takes 4-5 seconds to return to the side of the pan and the whisk leaves a trail.
  • Remove from the heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes before pouring into your tart shell. Level out the top with an offset spatula or knife.
  • Place in the fridge and allow it to set for about 1 hour before topping and serving.
  • Peel the mangoes, then use a sharp knife to cut off the cheeks running along the side of the stone. Place them flat side down on a board, then cut thin slices. Using groups of 4-5 slices, arrange them over the top of the tart.

Notes

  1. I use a standard Australian 20ml tablespoon (4 teaspoons worldwide)
  2. For best results you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales like these are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
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