Saturday, September 4, 2010

Strawberry Tartlets

I said I was making a lot of tarts, and I wasn't lying. I immediately wanted to make this when I saw the delicious photo in The Big Book of Baking. The hardest part is the Crème Pâtissière (pastry cream) which ended up lumpy and ugly, but you can hardly see it under the strawberry. The recipe calls for redcurrent jelly, which I couldn't find, so I substituted with strawberry jelly to glaze the top. I halved the original recipe to accommodate my smaller tart pans.

Typing this, I've realised I didn't actually taste one. I think I only made 5 small tartlets, and each of my family members had one, leaving me with none. Hmm... according to them it was very nice. Oh well.

See you guys soon!


Serves 8


125g plain flour
2 tbsp caster sugar
70g unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 egg yolk (I omitted)
1-2 tbsp water


1 vanilla pod, split
200ml milk
2 egg yolks
40g caster sugar
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp cornflour
125 thickened cream, softly whipped
4 tbsp redcurrent (or strawberry) jelly

1. To make the pastry, sift the flour and icing sugar into a bowl. Chop the butter into small pieces and add to the flour with the egg yolk, mixing with your fingertips and adding a little water, if necessary, to mix to a soft dough. Cover and place in the refrigerator to rest for 15 minutes.

2. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Roll out the pastry and use to line four 9cm tartlet tins. Prick the bases with a fork, line with baking paper and fill with baking beans, then bake blind in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Remove the paper and beans and bake for a further 5 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool.

3. For the filling, place the vanilla pod in a saucepan with the milk and leave on a low heat to infuse, without boiling, for 10 minutes. Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, flour and cornflour together in a mixing bowl until smooth. Strain the milk into the bowl and whisk until smooth.

4. Pour the mixture back into the pan and stir constantly over a moderate heat until boiling. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes until thickened and smooth. Remove from the heat and fold in the whipped cream. Spoon the mixture into the pastry cases.

5. When the filling has set slightly, top with strawberries, sliced if large, then spoon over a little jelly to glaze.

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