Over the last week I pondered for quite a while what would be a lovely gift for H on his 23rd birthday last Saturday. While the initial idea was to make lovely cream puffs (since it was the first recipe that H gave to me), I figured that it would be more worthwhile to make something more challenging, and something that he had never made before (I think!). So came about the idea of fruit tarts that I’ve always wanted to make for some time. I’m looking to more variations on these fruit tarts soon once the summer holidays come round :)
When I checked out one of Jamie’s videos for shortcrust pastry – turns out there’s a rule for half fat to flour but for the below recipe, I used more flour than expected so do adjust according to the moisture of your shortcrust pastry dough.
Shortcrust pastry tart shell
adapted from Jamie Oliver’s
Makes enough for 5 x small tart tins (10cm across)
- 125g butter
- 100g icing sugar
- ~255g-300g plain flour (adjust according to moisture of dough)
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon cold milk (original recipe calls for 2, but adjust according to moisture of dough)
- Pinch of salt
- 1-2 teaspoons of vanilla essence
- Cream together butter, icing sugar and salt.
- Rub in the flour and eggs (similar to the process of making the base of lemon bars)
- When the mixture reaches the texture of coarse breadcrumbs, add in the cold milk and vanilla essence.
- Pat and work the mixture together into a ball of dough.
- Flour it lightly.
- Wrap the dough in cling film, and refrigerate for at least an hour.
- Grease the tart tins with butter and line them with the dough.
- Poke the base of the tarts a few times with a fork and place baking paper with some beans in the tart shells to prevent the base from rising due to air expansion.
- Bake for approximately 15-20 mins at 180degreesC until the pastry is golden.
- Remove to cool at room temperature before filling up the tarts.
I’m quite sure I managed to nail it this time, and I was very pleased with the results :) the consistency was just right after refrigeration, making it a lovely treat. Half of the amount made below can fill up 4 tarts. The recipe was adapted from here, and the steps I used are all the same, except for some adjustments to the ingredients:
- 415ml fresh milk
- 70g sugar
- A pinch of salt
- 5 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 150g butter
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
If you’re making pastry cream for the first time – this video is really helpful in identifying the tipping point where the mixture has reached the desired consistency (H’s advice, again).
Remember to refrigerate the pastry cream for at least a few hours before using it :) it will be perfect!
And lo and behold, the lovely end-products (:
Recently made apple curd as well, but I shall cover it in a bit.