Monday, 1 August 2011

Glazed Fruit Tartlets

 Recipe Number Seventy:  Page 265.

I have been looking forward to making these all week. They sound so good; crisp light pastry, a dollop of cream with fresh fruit on top, yummy!

As our food delivery hadn't arrived as planned I needed to get some more butter for this recipe. I trudged over to the shop, feeling annoyed that our shopping hadn't been delivered. I ended up buying a bar of chocolate to cheer myself up. It was so warm that it had melted by the time I returned home. I was baking hot and smothered in thunder bugs; my mood was not improved!

I started off by making the sweet pastry. I rubbed the butter into the plain flour until the mixture resembled fine breadcrumbs. Even though the pastry is meant to be sweet, I was surprised by how little sugar was required. Last of all I needed to add some egg yolks. One of the shells broke badly so I ended up holding the egg in my hand and letting the white drain through my fingers into the sink, yeuck!! I mixed the egg yolks into the rest of the ingredients and kneaded it all together until the dough was smooth. I wrapped the dough in Clingfilm and popped it into the fridge for half an hour. When I took the dough out of the fridge it still felt a little soft, but even so I carried on! I unwrapped the dough and dusted the worktop and rolling pin with flour. As I started to roll it out it stuck fast to the worktop. It became obvious that the dough hadn't chilled enough; it was completely unmanageable. I peeled the dough off of the worktop, wrapped it up again and put it into the fridge for another half an hour. I wondered if the fridge thermostat was too warm, so I set it to a cooler temperature. When I came to roll the dough out again, I found it a lot easier to work with; it was a much happier experience!! I cut out the 12 rounds with a fluted cutter and placed the circles into my patty tin. Next I had to locate my baking beans. I had bought some a few months ago knowing I would need them at some point during this challenge. I thought they had been stored away in a cupboard where we put things we are not sure what to do with! I hunted high, I hunted low, but could not find them. As a last resort I looked in the kitchen drawers, not expecting to find them. That would surely be too obvious! But, low and behold, there they were! I couldn't believe that they had actually ended up where they should be – how bad is that!! I put a small piece of baking parchment into each of the tarts followed by a small handful of baking beans. Then they were ready for the oven.

I left the tarts to cook for 15 minutes and I am glad I didn't leave them any longer as they were starting to go a little bit brown around the edges. I left them to cool for a few minutes and then I removed the paper and baking beans before leaving them to cool on a wire rack. Now for the filling of double cream! I whisked it up until it formed soft peaks. Mary says just to spoon a little into each tart, but I wanted to use up my tub of cream so I put quite a bit in each. I also licked the cream off the beaters and from the bowl; this was a mistake, as I soon felt rather ill. I had been so chuffed that morning when I'd weighed myself. I had nearly fallen off the scales in shock when I had seen that I'd lost 2lbs!!! Somehow I think that surprise weight loss was short-lived! I had a mixture of fruit, kiwi fruit, strawberries and raspberries; I sliced up what I could and placed them on top of the cream. The last job was to heat up some apricot jam to brush over the fruit as a glaze. I should have used redcurrant jelly for the red fruits but I couldn't find any, so had to make do with apricot jam for all the tartlets. I was really pleased with the finished result; they looked so pretty. I think I overdid the cream and should have used more fruit instead, but hey ho!

The pastry was light and crisp; a shame some were overcooked. The cream and fruit on top was delicious. I think Neil quite liked them as he must have eaten five in one evening. As I had eaten so much cream beforehand I stuck to the two! These tartlets would make such an impressive but simple dessert for a special occasion. I would certainly make them again, but perhaps on a cooler day!
Pretty colours :-)

1 comment:

  1. These look amazing...anything with strawberries and Im in! :) xx