Friday, July 20, 2012

Tea Time Tarts


I posted about English tarts once in the very early days of this blog and at that time I only did a few jam tarts.  I can't imagine what took me so long to post about some more wonderful tarts using my grandmother's recipes.  One is for Maids of Honor and the other is for Coconut Cheesecakes.  Not sure why they're called cheesecakes as there is not a speck of cheese in them.  As I mentioned in my first blog on the subject of tarts, my grandma always had a tin of tarts when we came to visit and the Maids of Honor (or Honour in England) were my favorite.  It tickles me to no end to be able to make these using her recipes and have them turn out so well.  I thought of her fondly as I set some out on my Old English Rose china serving plate to serve to my friends. 

Making all of these tarts in one cooking event may seem daunting, but if you do a little organizing, it doesn't take long at all.  I put the dough together the day before and stuck it in the refrigerator.  The next day I just had to roll and cut it out for the tart tins.  Putting together the two batters is very quick and then it's just a matter of putting together the tarts and baking them.  With the leftover dough, I always make some plain jam tarts. Not only are they tasty, but they perk up the serving plate with some color.  It took me a total of 1 1/2 hours to make 3 dozen tarts. Not a huge time commitment. These freeze very well, by the way.

English Tea Tarts

Pastry

3 Tbsp cold butter, cut in small cubes
2 Tbsp cold Crisco, cut in small cubes
1 cup all purpose flour
Pinch of salt
2-4 Tbsp ice water
In a food processor or with a pastry cutter, cut the butter and Crisco in with the flour and salt until pea size clumps appear.  Add water, 1 Tbsp at at time until mixture forms a ball.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.  Makes 16 tarts.

Coconut Cheesecakes
(makes 12 tarts)

3 Tbsp softened butter
2/3 cup fine coconut
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp rice flour
1 egg
1/2 tsp baking powder

Cream butter, sugar and egg together.  Add rest of the ingrediants and mix. Line the tart tins with pastry.   Put a dab of any flavor jam or lemon curd on the bottom of the pastry. Add the filling over the jam.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.  Let sit in tart tin for 5 min. then remove onto cooling rack.
Maids of Honor
(makes 12 tarts)

1/2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup softened butter
1 egg
2 tsp. ground almonds
1/8 tsp almond extract of vanilla extract

Cream butter, sugar and egg.  Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.  Line the tart tins with pastry. Put a dab of any flavor jam (cherry is very good) on the bottom of the pastry. Add the filling over the jam.  bake at 400 degress for 20 min. or until golden brown.  Let sit in tart tin for 5 min. then remove onto cooling rack.  Mix together powder sugar, a few drops of water and a few drops of vanilla to make a thick glaze.  When tarts are cool, put a small spoonful of glaze on tops of tarts and let set.
Jam Tarts

Fill empty tart pastry with any flavor jam. Do not overfill or you will have a mess to clean up!  Bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Let set in tin for 5 min. then remove and let cool completely.

2 comments:

~~louise~~ said...

Each and every tart looks more delicious than the next. You did a GREAT job and I'm sure your grandmother would agree. If I could just nibble on one, I think I would choose the Maids of Honor:)

Thanks so much for sharing...

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