King County’s first ever CHOMP! festival celebrates local food and green living. The event takes place on September 12th and 13th at Marymoor Park. On Saturday the 12th, King County Executive Dow Constantine and I are hosting a farm to table kickoff dinner. The ticketed event will be held at the Clise Mansion Garden at Marymoor Park’s Willowmoor Farm. I’ll be cooking with several other of Seattle’s top chefs. Come join me for a great meal made from foods grown and produced right here in King County, local beer and wine, and live music. Proceeds from the dinner benefit the Snoqualmie Valley Preservation Alliance, a nonprofit organization committed to protecting the rural character and the viability of farms, residents, and businesses of the Snoqualmie River Valley. Tickets for the dinner are limited. Order your tickets here.

On Sunday, September 13th, Chomp! takes over Marymoor Park with a full day of free programming. Two stages will feature some of the best indie music and ethnic folk performances. There will also be cooking demonstrations, local craft beer and wine, food from local, sustainable businesses, plenty of hands-on activities, and interactive demonstrations from King County farmers and businesses. Kids will enjoy a “Pea Patch” that will include family-friendly musical performances, pizza dough tossing lessons for youngsters, and many other fun activities.

Chomp! will be fun and informative. It benefits our local food economy by celebrating local farmers, chefs and restaurants that use locally-sourced foods, and local organizations that specialize in healthy food, sustainability, and social justice. Come dance, eat, drink, learn, and grow. All while supporting something really important. What’s not to like? Click here to learn more about the event.

I hope to see you there.


Summer Harvest Cooking Video

The best meals always seem to be the spontaneous ones. During summer harvest season, I let the garden inspire my meals. For this lunch, I picked what was ripe, and pulled together a quick and delicious meal for my neighbors. With vegetables this fresh, they don’t need a lot of fuss so I leaned towards simple preparations that allow the natural flavors to shine.

Our meal consisted of a sugar snap pea guacamole, oven-roasted sliced beets, simple marinated grilled chicken with herbs and garlic (served with a pistol sauce that was not covered in the video, but in the recipe below), and a just-picked garden salad with a fresh raspberry vinaigrette. Enjoying the gift of a warm, sunny day we dined by the garden. I think food tastes better outside, especially while sharing stories with friends and a nice bottle of chilled rosé.

Watch the video above to learn more about how I prepared the meal.

You can find the recipes here.

Crostini with Snap Pea Guacamole

Roasted Beets

Grilled Chicken with Pistou Sauce

Garden Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

Marilyn Mercer, Savory Manager


Marilyn is new to Macrina but not to Seattle’s food scene. Over the last 18 years, she’s acquired a wealth of experience while cooking at some of Seattle’s most acclaimed restaurants. After graduating from college with a BA in Art History and Archeology, Marilyn decided to follow her greatest passion: food. She enrolled at the Seattle Culinary Academy at Seattle Central Community College and began cooking at The Ruins. Over the years, she has worked at The Herbfarm, with Tom Douglas, at Ponti Seafood, and Crow, amongst others. Most recently she was the Kitchen Manager for Metropolitan Market.

At Macrina Bakery she manages the Savory Department. A typical day starts at 5 or 6 in the morning. She balances her time planning the daily production schedule, cooking with the crew, ordering supplies, and developing new specials. On the weekends she is busy supplying the cafes for their busy brunches, running over to provide support to especially busy cafes, or helping deal with crises such as the occasional equipment breakdown.

Marilyn grew up in Seattle’s Magnolia neighborhood, and two of her sisters still live in the Seattle area. In her free time she loves to take long walks with her two dogs, Chloe and Julia Child. She enjoys hiking in the Cascades and Olympics and can often be found cycling on her days off. She spends a lot of time cooking for her food blog ( which she produces with her partner Ludmilla Ramos. In the summer, she loves to cook on her large Brinkmann charcoal barbecue in the backyard where she just reaches into her garden for fresh herbs.

Her favorite thing about Macrina is the people she works with and the company itself. She says it’s clear the company really cares about each employee and the quality of the breads and pastry and savory is so high and so consistent that the company is growing fast. While that keeps her busy, she’s happy for all the opportunities it provides for her and her crew.

Baking with Julia

julia_bakingHappy Birthday Julia Child!

One of the bakers here at Macrina noticed that Julia Child’s birthday was coming up on August 15th and suggested I write about my experience filming Baking with Julia in 1996. It just so happens I’m currently in Boston visiting my dear friend Susan Regis, a super host as well as a James Beard Award-winning chef so the walk down memory lane is timely in many ways.

Susan accompanied me to Julia Child’s house for the filming of my episode that memorable summer day in 1996. Susan, who has presided over some of the most storied Boston kitchens, knew Julia Child through the Cambridge food network. I was glad my supportive friend was with me because I was going to cook in Julia Child’s kitchen. The Julia Child’s kitchen! It still gives me goose bumps to think about it. I’d done cooking classes before, but not on television and not standing next to Julia Child’s famous pegboard. It was a dream come true, and yet I was absolutely terrified.


I’d met Julia Child briefly back in the 80’s when I cooked at Jasper’s, a great restaurant on the Boston waterfront in its day. I was very surprised and honored when I got a call and heard that Julia Child was interested in featuring me in an episode of Baking with Julia, the show that would go on to win an Emmy Award and a James Beard Award. Macrina had only been open for three years. She traveled to Seattle, visited the bakery, and loved it. I wanted to do bread, my true love, but they had already lined up several very prominent bakers to be on the show. Julia loved our pastries and convinced me to make tarts.


When the time came, I flew to Boston and with Susan in tow made my way to Julia Child’s imposing Cambridge clapboard house. The house was bustling with activity. There was a prep kitchen set up in the basement and her kitchen was transformed into a studio, full of lights, people, and cameras. There was a make-up artist, the cookbook writer Dorie Greenspan, who was writing the companion cookbook to the show, the producer Geoffrey Drummond, and several others bustling about.

It turned out that the night before we were to film there were some electrical problems and the air-conditioning had gone out. They’d had to bring in a generator and had hooked up an ad hoc cooling system. Silver accordion ducts poked through windows and out of hallways blowing cold air. Those cameras put out a lot of heat. Even with all their efforts it was still mid-eighties in that kitchen. It didn’t feel like a good omen.

I planned to make two crusts, our classic pie crust, and our crostata crust. With the pie crust I would make three tarts, a French Apple Tart, a Baked Yogurt Tart with Blackberries and Almonds, and a Blueberry Nectarine Tart. With the crostata crust I would make a Raspberry Fig Crostata. As filming started, we found the dough had to be kept in a cooler between takes. It was too hot and tart dough can be a prickly creature in warm weather. My nerves might have overwhelmed me in this less than ideal scenario if Julia Child wasn’t so graceful. She asked me instinctive questions, leading me along, smoothly adding details to help the home cook. I relaxed in a few minutes.


The rest of the day was a blast, even with the hot kitchen. The tarts came out perfectly! I even got to the crostata. Evidently I was fast, and we managed to film more than enough for one show. So I got a bonus half-show that just focused on the crostata. All of the humor and wit and personal connection that you see from Julia Child on the show came across even more between takes. It was unbelievably stimulating and thrilling to be there.

As I packed up my stuff, tired, hot, and exhilarated, little did I know that the best part of the day was yet to come. Susan invited Julia Child over to her house for a barbecue on the roof. Susan lived in a North End brownstone, four flights of stairs to the roof. Julia Child was 84 years old then, her husband Paul had passed away two years earlier. To my great surprise, Julia accepted the invitation. Geoffrey Drummond and Dorie Greenspan accompanied her. She scaled the four flights just fine, took a seat in an Adirondack chair and held court with a roof deck of people, most half her age. She talked of meals and wines, recalling nuances of flavor and special dishes fondly. What a memory she had. I think we grilled pizzas and I know there was lots of great food. I barely remember all that now. What I remember is Julia Child, sitting on the roof sharing her passions, not at all pretentious, incredibly approachable, humble, and full of grace.

That experience is one of the great memories of my life. The cookbook turned out beautifully. I was so pleased that in addition to my tarts and crostata they included my potato bread as well. It’s so much fun to be back at Susan’s recalling that day.

Happy Birthday, Julia Child. You will never be forgotten.


Leslie Mackie

Watch Baking with Julia featuring Leslie Mackie

Farm to Brunch: Touring Seattle Tilth

logoEarly this June I visited Seattle Tilth’s farm incubator in Auburn with Marilyn Mercer, Elizabeth Hall, Mandela Turner, and Crystal Kitchin, Macrina’s brunch team. We were especially excited to visit the farm – Macrina is one of the lucky few establishments that buys freshly grown vegetables from Seattle Tilth for our weekly rotating brunch menus.

Seattle Tilth started in 1978 with its Urban Agriculture Center in Wallingford. The Tilth Association began as an alternative agriculture movement with the aim of supporting and promoting biologically sound and socially equitable agriculture in the Pacific Northwest. While the parent association disbanded in 1984, Seattle Tilth has continued to grow and thrive with a stated mission today to inspire and educate people to safeguard our natural resources while building an equitable and sustainable local food system. They teach people to grow food organically while taking care of the environment through a wide variety of classes, programs, and community events. There are classes for both kids and adults, many of them located in Seattle’s most diverse and densely populated urban neighborhoods. They’re an amazing resource for organic gardening education in the region.


One of their newer programs is the farm incubator.  Matthew McDermott, the director of Seattle Tilth Farm Works, and Chris Iberle, the Food Hub Manager, led us on our tour of their forty-acre site in Auburn. They call it “The Red Barn Farm.”  While we walked through the fields of young starts, Matthew filled us in on the history of the land. Originally owned by former Seattle Supersonics Greg Ballard, who bought the land for a kid’s basketball camp, it was later donated to Seattle Parks and Recreation. They make it available to Seattle Tilth Farm Works as part of their Parks Urban Food Systems program.

The program provides farm business training and support to immigrants, refugees and people with limited resources in South King County. Each year they add ten new farmers to their training program that runs from February to June, reserving ten spots for returning farmers. Their aim is to help new farmers get into small farming, teaching them not just the elements of organic farming through hands-on experience, but also business planning, operations, and marketing. Matthew explains that the average age of an American small farmer is 60 years old. They hope to lower that through their program.


Each of the twenty farmers tends a quarter-acre parcel, growing vegetables for Seattle Tilth’s CSA subscription program that provides subscribers with a weekly box full of fresh, delicious produce from June through October. The farm also supplies the fresh produce for their Good Food Bag program, which helps supply healthy organic vegetables to qualifying limited-resource families. We saw peas, radishes, onions, garlic, corn, squash, and pole-beans. In addition to the open fields they have 13 100-foot hoop houses, most of them planted with tomatoes. Due to the low snow pack this year and the possibility of a drought they mandated a water irrigation system. To supplement their water supply, they have a large cistern that collects rainwater. At the end of our tour, we stopped by the cleaning station where the farmers wash and trim their veggies, weighing their daily harvest and logging it onto the weekly production board.

French Toast

It feels good to be a part of a program that is training young farmers in the best practices for sustainable and environmentally sensitive farming. Moreover, their produce is simply delicious. Visit one of our Macrina cafe locations over the weekend and try something off of our rotating brunch menu to see for yourself.

Leslie Mackie

Wiggin’ Out At Our Company Picnic


For our fourth annual Feast of Macrina celebration honoring our staff, their families, and our community at Macrina we encouraged everyone to wear wigs. Why not have a little fun? So on July 14th we closed our cafes at 2, just like a bakery in Italy does to honor a patron saint, often the whole town for that matter. We gathered at a beach in Lincoln Park to celebrate St. Macrina’s Feast Day (For you sticklers, her actual feast day is July 19th). St. Macrina was known for working to improve the quality of life for people in her community, my kind of gal, and why I found her so inspiring when naming my bakery. But it takes more than a patron saint to run a bakery and Macrina wouldn’t be what it is today without the talented, hard-working team we have. With silly wigs on our heads, we feasted on amazing food and laughed a lot. There were scavenger hunts, a balloon toss (a great way to cool off in the hot sun, as many discovered), and a prize for the best wig. When I opened Macrina in 1993, we had a staff of six and could celebrate in a backyard. Now we need many tables and acreage at a park. It’s been so much fun watching the bakery grow, and I am honored to be able to celebrate and feast in honor of St. Macrina with so many great people.

San Francisco: A Culinary Adventure

Acme breads (2)

Last month I took a little work trip with my partners Matt Galvin and Scott France to the Bay Area – if you call eating at some of the country’s finest restaurants and bakeries work. Our first stop was the San Francisco Baking Institute. Michel Suas, a mentor of mine for over 20 years, founded this internationally recognized baking school in 1996. Michel has consulted for many of the nation’s top bakeries, including Acme Bread and Thomas Keller’s restaurants. The Institute hosts bread and pastry classes for both professional and amateur bakers, and many at Macrina have taken classes from him in classic breads of France and Viennoiserie pastry. I consider him the best in his field and continue to consult with him as Macrina grows.

1. Tartine

For a late lunch, we made our way to the Mission District to Tartine, a French-style bakery run by Elizabeth Pruitt and Chad Robertson. There is no sign above the door, just a street address, but finding it is easy. Just look for the long line of people snaking out the door, waiting for one of Tartine’s gorgeous pastries or a loaf of bread often still warm from the oven. When we finally made it to the front of the line, I had to peek through a baker’s rack behind the cash register to catch a glimpse of the breads. Fortunately, they are also listed on a chalkboard. I bought a half-loaf of sprouted rye bread, still piping hot. We tore into the fragrant, crusty loaf right at the counter. We also indulged in their rye cookies, a savory scone with Niman Ranch bacon, a classic croissant, and lemon pound cake, all of which I recommend. As we were finishing up a little red pull-wagon stacked with over a dozen fragrant loaves wheeled right by our table bound for their restaurant Bar Tartine, which is located right around the corner.

state bird provision (2)


We had a dinner reservation at State Bird Provisions on Fillmore Street.  In 2012, the recently opened State Bird Provisions was named the best new restaurant in America by Bon Appétit magazine. While waiting for our table we had appetizers and a drink at Progress, their sister restaurant next door. A couple standouts were their Malaysian Beef Jerky with Crushed Peanuts and Wood-Roasted Blonde Morels with Smoked Hollandaise. With our table ready we moved over to State Bird Provisions. The food there is served dim-sum style, with over half the food delivered on gleaming carts that are wheeled by filled with many creative concoctions. For two hours we indulged. My favorites were Garlic Bread with Burrata, Smoked Trout-Avocado ‘Chip and Dip’, Green Garlic Steak Tartare Caesar Toast, and Don Watson’s Lamb with Cumin, Squid, Shishitos, and Dates. The chef Stuart Brioza visited our table, filled us in on the history of the two restaurants, and I enjoyed learning of the many mutual friends we have in the industry.



small_coffeeThe next morning started with a visit to Sightglass Coffee; an independent sibling-owned coffee company with a few locations.  They specialize in small batch production and source only the best green coffee. We visited their flagship store on Seventh Street, which already had a line at 7:30 on a Saturday morning, this in a city not known for waking early. It was immediately evident why Matt, a very discerning coffee drinker, suggested the visit. On one side of the high-ceilinged industrial space bags of green coffee surround a large stainless steel roaster. Behind a handsome bar the baristi serve up freshly roasted coffee on the other side.  We enjoyed unrivaled espresso, cappuccini, and americani, along with fantastic pastries from b. patisserie and Neighbor Bakehouse.

bpatesserie (2)


That afternoon we set out to visit a few other standout bakeries. First up was b. patisserie, a collaboration between Belinda Leong and Michel Suas. This dynamic duo is a formidable combination, with her talent as a pastry chef and his bread knowledge and general expertise. After years of planning, they opened their doors in 2012 at the lower edge of Pacific Heights. The open pastry kitchen has a large butcher block prep table surrounded by a team of bakers in white chef’s coats. Marble-topped Parisian style cafe tables, with bentwood chairs and a few bench seats, surround the beating heart of the patisserie, a long temperature controlled marble display counter filled an overwhelming display of sweet and savory treats. The elegant, buttery croissants are delightful, and the Kouign Amman pastries (pronounced Queen Ah-mahn) have developed a cult following in the city. Originating from the Brittany region, this round crusty cake has layers of butter and sugar folded in, much like a croissant, although with fewer layers. We sampled one filled with warm chocolate ganache, one with local berries, and a perfectly caramelized sugar version. While I’d recommend anything they make, seek out their addictive house-made granola, fresh berry scones, and sandwiches served on freshly baked bread.


When you are in the bread business you often reach out to other bakers when taking on new projects or approaching big decisions. This is how I got to know the owners of Semifreddi’s Bread Company, Tom Frainier and Mike Rose, and vice president of bakery operations John Tredgold (who goes by JT). In business since 1987 they have grown into one of the largest artisan wholesale bread and pastry bakeries in the Bay Area. They have always been very generous with their time and knowledge. Tom says their company culture has evolved from ‘take care of the customer’ to ‘take care of our employees.’ Through their expansion they’ve managed to maintain the same high quality. They’ve also become industry leaders in their dedication to community giving. Primarily a wholesale business, they have two cafes, one in Berkeley and the other in Kensington. Their baguettes are especially worth picking up.


Another major artisan bakery in the Bay Area is The Acme Bread Company. Owner Steve Sullivan was the first baker I knew about who was making French artisan-inspired bread. Before opening Acme Bread Company in 1983, Steve was baking bread for Chez Panisse. He left the famous restaurant to visit France to learn more about bread. Now more than thirty years later he continues to bake some of the best bread I have ever had. Steve met with us and gave our crew a tour of his small but mighty bakery in Oakland. They also have two other baking facilities strategically located as close to delivery locations in San Francisco in order to keep the bread as fresh as possible. Primarily a wholesale bakery they have two retail locations, one in the ferry plaza, and their original bakery on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley. I love the racks and racks of fragrant freshly baked breads in the cafes.

As vibrant and booming as our own Seattle food scene is, it was great to visit San Francisco and taste what is happening down there.  I am already looking forward to my next trip there!

Leslie Mackie

Places Visited:

  1. Tartine, 600 Guerrero St, San Francisco, 415-487-2600;
  2. State Bird Provisions, 1529 Fillmore St, San Francisco, 415-795-1272;
  3. Sightglass Coffee, 270 7th St, San Francisco, 415-861-1313;
  4. b.patisserie, 2821 California St, San Francisco, 415-440-1700;
  5. Semifreddi’s, 3084 Claremont Ave, Berkeley, 510-596-9942;
  6. The Acme Bread Company, 1601 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, 510-524-1327;

Flour and Heart: A Celebration of America’s Best Bakers

Bob's Red Mill Cake

I received an invitation from Bob’s Red Mill to join seven other celebrated bakers and pastry chefs from around the country for an event in New York City on May 12th. We were each given a type of flour and asked to create a new recipe for the event. A large bag of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Unbleached All-Purpose Flour arrived, and I set to work. With rhubarb in season and my raspberry bushes just beginning to fruit I started playing around with a few ideas. Some organic flours I have used have been inconsistent. I found Bob’s to be very predictable, both in pastry and bread. It bakes nicely, is not too heavy, and has good texture. The recipe I settled on for the event was a Rhubarb and Raspberry Upside Down Cake, a sweet and buttery favorite that pairs the tang of raspberries with the tartness of rhubarb.

I flew to New York with Jane Cho, Macrina’s head pastry chef, and together we prepared 250 tiny cakes, topping them with whipped cream. Astor Center, where the event was held, was beautifully decked out. Many food magazines, such as Food & Wine, Saveur, and Martha Stewart Living stopped by for a nibble, as well as a great number of food bloggers and tastemakers. And Bob Moore, the real Bob we know from the label, wearing his signature red vest and golf hat, made the rounds. He repeatedly thanked all of us “for making Bob’s Red Mill what it is.” Well into his eighties, Bob is a charming and very gracious man, and it is easy to see how he has built such a strong community around his product. The values of his now employee-owned company are first-rate, as you’d expect from a company dedicated to sourcing the finest grains and flours and milling them with old-world techniques.

The next day we toured some of New York’s finest bakeries: Sullivan Street Bakery, Tom Cat Bakery, Balthazar Bakery, and Amy’s Bread. We returned to Seattle exhausted, exhilarated, and honored to have been a part of Bob’s Red Mill’s celebration. To have shared the stage with so many other talented pastry chefs and bakers was special. Look for my Raspberry Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake at one of our cafes this summer.

 – Leslie Mackie

One-Day Artisan Loaf

You can make very flavorful artisan bread at home by using a technique that’s somewhat new in the bread-baking world: the no-knead method. I use this technique at home all the time and feel sure it will become a favorite of yours as well. The recipes I make this way don’t call for a homemade starter to build flavor. All you need is time, a heavy dutch oven, flour, yeast, olive oil, and salt.

One of the keys to baking a beautiful artisan loaf is having a humid atmosphere when the bread first hits the oven. The covered dutch oven keeps the inside air moist for the first few minutes of baking, allowing the bread’s soft outer surface to rise before it forms a hard crust. The result is a really beautiful loaf—domed, crusty, caramelized to a deep brown color, and full of complex flavors. I’ve found that baking in a cast-iron pot creates the all-time best results for home bread baking.

Click to enjoy recipes for my One-Day Artisan Loaf, One-Day Artisan Whole Grain Loaf and Pesto Ham & Cheese Sandwich.

Going Greek: Baking with Greek Yogurt

Baking with Greek Yogurt

Savoring the benefits of Greek yogurt doesn’t have to end with breakfast. Photo by Meng He.

Greek yogurt has invaded my supermarket, bumping many of the old regular brands off the shelf. It even became a cold war subject in 2014 when Russian President Vladimir Putin refused to allow a shipment of Greek yogurt to reach the United States Olympic team at the winter games in Sochi. Why all the fuss about something as commonplace as yogurt? Was Putin seeking a competitive advantage? Who knows, but Greek yogurt does have health advantages over regular yogurt, with more beneficial probiotic bacteria and a higher protein content. It’s also lower in both natural sugars and sodium. That’s just a bonus. What I like best is its rich flavor and satisfying, creamy mouthfeel. The superior thickness is achieved by straining out the excess whey, giving it that memorable texture and a delicious tang that brings back indelible memories of travels to Santorini and Crete.

Recently the Washington State Dairy Council asked us to develop a recipe featuring Greek yogurt. So we tweaked our Fruit & Yogurt Tart recipe to include the ingredient and now we’re wondering how we ever lived without it. Inspired, we experimented and adjusted other recipes too. We’re now serving our housemade Granola Parfait over a silky dollop of honeyed Greek yogurt and fresh berry compote. We’re also scooping it into batters for some of our cakes and tarts, substituting it for other fats. It enhances textures, creating a finer, more consistent crumb, and adding moisture. Carrying flavor much like butter does, with the perk of extra protein. Judge the results for yourself by trying a slice of our Budapest Coffee Cake or Lemon Sour Cherry Coffee Cake, a sturdy but tender treat that doesn’t just go with breakfast, at least at my house.

When you’re picking up Greek yogurt, to eat or for baking, be sure the label lists only milk and active cultures as ingredients. Some companies add powdered milk protein, starches, and gums to thicken it. This shortcuts the lengthy straining process and the extra milk it requires, saving money in production. Quality is the sacrifice. So grab some plain Greek yogurt and try the recipe below for my Fruit & Greek Yogurt Tart. Or experiment like we did, replacing some or all of the butter or sour cream in your favorite recipes. However it turns out, you’ll discover that once you go Greek, at least with yogurt, you’ll never go back.

 – Leslie Mackie

Fruit & Greek Yogurt Tart

Click here to print this recipe!


Pre-rolled 9” pie shell or one recipe for Flaky Pie Dough (see note below)
3 eggs
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups plain (unflavored) Greek low-fat yogurt
1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups fresh seasonal fruit
1/3 cup sliced raw almonds
1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Makes a 9-inch tart

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Locate a 9” glass pie pan, aluminum pie tin or 2” fluted tart pan.

2. Place chilled pie shell into the pan, line it with parchment paper, and weight with rice or baking beans. Bake for 30 minutes or until shell is golden brown. Remove rice or beans and set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer place the eggs, sugar and vanilla. With a whisk attachment on medium speed, whip for 3 to 5 minutes or until the mixture becomes light in color and texture.

4. With the mixer on low speed add in the yogurt. Lower the bowl and scrape down the sides to make sure it is well combined. With the mixer on low speed add the flour gradually to avoid forming lumps. Scrape bowl again to ensure everything is well combined.

5. Pour prepared custard into the pre-baked shell leaving a 1/4-inch border at the edge of the crust. This is to prevent the custard from spilling over the edge when the fruit is added. Scatter berries or sliced fresh fruit over the top of the tart and sprinkle sliced almonds around the edge of the tart.

6. Place the tart on the center rack of the oven and bake for approximately 1 hour, or until the tart is set in the center.  Check the tart at 30 minutes and rotate for even baking.

7. Remove the tart from the oven and set aside to cool for 1 hour or chill in the refrigerator before serving. Dust with powdered sugar for presentation.

Note: For an absolutely delicious, foolproof pie crust, use our Flaky Pie Dough recipe, then proceed as follows: Place two-thirds of the prepared dough on a floured work surface and begin rolling out the pie dough to 1/8-inch thickness, creating a 15-inch circle (save remaining dough for other uses). Fold pie dough in half and lift into the baking pan, allowing for a 2-inch border beyond the rim. To create the pie rim, fold the pie dough border up and into itself, overlapping with the cut edge visible to the inside of the tart, making a 1/2-inch standing crust. Crimp the edge all around the pie pan and then chill in freezer for 20 minutes. Continue following instructions in Step 2.