I have always loved bite sized fruit tartlets. Whenever they have them at events, that is my first stop. The crisp crust, smooth pastry cream and a little piece of fruit on top. I love fruit based desserts, and this is probably my favorite. I wasn’t about to buy a new mini tartlet pan for this, 1- because I am not sure where I would get one, and 2- we already spent a ton of money on the party and Purim, so I figured that I would try and “MacGyver” something. I had little 2 oz. ramekins so I figured that I would use them as a frame and make a tin foil form for the tart shells.
I made the dough for the crust with a pastry cutter – here you can see bits of margarine – all those areas that will turn out nice and flaky:
I rolled out the dough and carefully cute circles with my trusty dusty circle cookie cutter.
Check out my totally ghetto tartlet “pans”:
As you can see, the crusts themselves did not come out perfectly, they were a little thick for such small things, so I guess next time we will have to try another recipe, though they tasted delicious.
I wanted to have enough for all 20 people, and even for some to have two, in the end I got 36 nice looking crusts (and a few not so nice ones). When I finally finished with them, I put them in a container and left them for the next few days until I was ready to bake them.
Meanwhile, I made the pastry cream that I would fill the crusts with. Pastry cream is actually not that hard to make. I was once daunted by it, but after making it a few times, I am no longer afraid. The only tricky part is to make sure that the eggs don’t scramble, and all you have to do for that is slowly pour in only a little of the hot liquid while stirring.
Unfortunately I could not take a picture of the entire tray filled with little tartlets as I assembled them on the Sabbath and I can’t take pictures, but I did fill two beforehand so that I could post them. I put little pieces of segmented oranges on top, though when I served them I put little slices of kiwi on each tart. It looked and tasted delicious.
I found the recipe at http://www.joyofbaking.com.
Here is it:
Sweet Pastry Crust:
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter (or margarine)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 1/4 cups (300 ml) milk
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (or 1 tsp. vanilla extract)
3 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons (20 grams) cornstarch (corn flour)
3/4 tablespoon (10 ml) liqueur (Grand Marnier, Brandy, Kirsch) (optional)
Apricot Glaze: (optional)
1/2 cup (125 grams) apricot jam or preserves
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier or water or combination of the two (can also use other liqueurs)
2 – 3 cups mixed fruit, such as raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, kiwifruit, bananas, plums, pineapple, melon, etc.