Cooking On A Budget: Dessert Tartletts

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Dessert Tartletts

You know I love anything related to the kitchen. So when I returned a cookbook I had received for Christmas (it was a duplicate), I seized the opportunity to pick up a mini non-stick tart pan set. The set is designed so that you can bake 4 tart shells at once. How convenient is that? I decided I would make quick and simple tarts using chocolate pudding, whipped cream and top them with either shaved chocolate or blueberries. However you can make a standard custard or use another flavored pudding.  I will post a picture later after I have my tarts completely finished.

The basic dough:
1 2/3 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt (I eliminated this as my butter contains salt)
1 1/2 sticks ice cold butter - cut in chunks
2 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. ice cold water
In a food processor pulse the flour, sugar and salt (if you are using unsalted butter) to incorporate.  Next, add in the cold butter chunks and pulse 10-12 times.  Add in the egg yolks, vanilla and ice water and pulse about 6-8 times to get everything mixed together.
Turn the dough out onto plastic wrap and form into a ball - do this as quickly as possible.  With your rolling pin flatten the disk and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator, roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface with a sheet of waxed paper on top. You have to work it quickly as the butter begins to melt fast.
Lay the dough over the tart pans and press the dough in, making sure you press in all of the sides.  Remove any excess dough.  Place a piece of aluminum foil on the bottom and add in pie weights or beans.
Bake the tart shells in a preheated 425 degree oven for 8 minutes.  Take out of the oven and remove the foil and beans, prick the bottom of the shell a number of times.
Place the shells back in the oven and bake for about 4 minutes more until the bottom crust is done.  Allow the shells to cool completely while you make a filling for them.
I am taking help from My-T-Fine pudding mix, however if you want to make a custard and top with some berries.

For the custard you will bake the tartletts part way - when you remove the foil and beans, add in the custard mixture and continue to bake for 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
Lemon custard:
1 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tbsp. grated lemon zest (do not use the white part)
1 stick melted butter
6 eggs slightly beaten
1 cup granulated white sugar
Using a hand held mixer or wire whisk, mix all of the above ingredients. Add the mixture to the partially baked tart shells and bake until they are golden brown.
Cool the tarts and top with your choice of berries or kiwi fruit slices.

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