French fruit flan decorated with circles of glazed summer fruits

Summer Fruit Flan

This gorgeous Summer Fruit Flan was our contribution to a New Year’s Eve dinner with friends. New Year’s Eve 2021 was an absolute scorcher in Melbourne, and Summer Fruit Flan ticked all the boxes for a dessert that was delicious, cool, and featured fresh seasonal fruit. In particular, we had some beautiful home-grown apricots from our daughter, Mia’s, apricot tree.  The apricots had to feature in a special dessert!

Créme patissiere is the traditional filling for a French fruit flan, but neither of us had made it before. It took 16 eggs and 3 attempts to get it right, but the end result was nothing short of spectacular.

We made a crisp shortcrust pastry for the base. You could skip this step and buy a ready-made pastry shell. But if you have time, we recommend making your own pastry. It elevates this dish to the next level.

For the glaze, we used spiced poaching syrup, leftover from the poached peaches we served on Christmas Eve. We whisked two leaves of gelatine that had been soaked in cold water for 5 minutes into one cup of just-simmering poaching syrup. We brushed this over the fruit and refrigerated the tart. When the glaze had set, we brushed over another thin layer of glaze before refrigerating it again. You could use warmed apricot jam instead … unless you happen to have some leftover poaching syrup just hanging around!

Summer Fruit Flan

Classic French dessert featuring shortcrust pastry, créme patissiere, and fresh fruit.
Prep Time1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Chilling time4 hours
Total Time6 hours 15 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: dessert, dinner party, French dessert, vegetarian
Servings: 8 people
Author: Dean & Karen


  • Food processor optional
  • 23cm flan tin



  • 2 cups full cream milk
  • 1 vanilla pod/bean split, seeds scraped out and reserved
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 140 g caster sugar
  • 30 g cornflour (cornstarch)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 30 g butter


  • 220 g plain flour
  • 1 TBS icing sugar
  • 110 g unsalted butter chilled & cubed
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 TBS iced water


  • Seasonal fresh fruit
  • Warmed apricot jam, or poaching syrup set with gelatine to glaze See note in blog post



  • Heat milk with vanilla pod and seeds over medium heat until almost boiling.
  • Meanwhile, beat egg yolks with sugar, salt and cornflour until pale and creamy.
  • Remove milk from heat and pour gradually into egg mix, beating continuously.
  • Rinse out and dry saucepan, and return custard mixture to the saucepan. heat on a medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and comes to a boil. Reduce heat to very low, and continue to cook for a further 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and strain through a course sieve over a bowl. Whisk butter into hot custard mix.
  • Immediately press cling wrap onto the surface of the créme patissiere. This will prevent a skin from forming on the surface.
  • Set aside to cool to room temperature before refrigerating.


  • Place flour, icing sugar, butter and a pinch of salt in the food processor. Blitz until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
  • With the machine running, add egg yolk, then iced water. Continue to process until mixture just comes together to form a ball. Remove from processor, knead briefly on a floured surface, then roll the dough into a flat disc. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Grease a 23cm flan tin and line the base with baking paper.
  • Remove chilled pastry from fridge and roll out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 3mm. Carefully lift the pastry with a rolling pin and press it into the flan tin. Return to fridge and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Heat oven to 180°c. Remove flan tin from fridge and prick the base with a fork all over. Place a piece of crumpled baking paper in the flan shell, and fill with baking weights or uncooked beans or rice.
  • Bake blind for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the baking weights and paper, and continue to bake for a further 10 to 15 minutes, until crust is just golden. Watch it very closely in the last few minutes!
  • Leave the flan crust in its tin, and cool on a rack until completely cold.


  • Spoon or pipe the créme patissiere into the cold flan shell and smooth out. Decorate with fresh fruit any way you like. Heat apricot jam or poaching liquid, and brush glaze over the fruit. Return to fridge until ready to serve.



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