Tag Archives: tarts

Spiced Pear Tart 

My kids love to eat any kind of pears ever since they were little, Anjou, Barlett, or Asian. Pears are all very sweet and tasty no matter how you eat them. You can enjoy them raw, cook, bake, poach, etc. They are also a good source of fibre and vitamin C. It’s pretty hard not to love them ! Fall is the season for pears, so I used some Barlett pears and made this Spiced Pear Tart. I spiced up a basic short crust  for the tart shell. The dough freezes well, so you can make it ahead of time. It can also turn into yummy cookies ! So don’t throw away the trimmings after you make the tarts. Just gather them together, roll it, cut it with cookie cutters and bake for 8-10 minutes at 350°F ! I baked mine into leaves and used them as garnish ! You can adjust the amount of spices used according to your taste, both in the tart shell and the fillings. I actually would prefer a bit spicier, but my daughter said this is perfect for her palate. Well, I have to listen to my little boss ! The tarts taste delicious on their own, but my little boss likes them with vanilla ice cream, even better !  

 

Makes four 4-inch tarts or eight 2-inch mini tarts    

For the tart shell 

  • 120 g cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces 
  • 75 g granulated sugar 
  • 2 egg yolks 
  • 180 g cake and pastry flour 
  • 3 g ground ginger 
  • 2 g ground cinnamon 
  • Pinch of cloves
  • Pinch of nutmeg 

For the fillings 

  • About 3-4 pears (wash, peel, core and cut into chunks)
  • 60 g brown sugar 
  • 3 g ground ginger 
  • 3 g ground cinnamon 
  • 5 mL pure vanilla extract 

For the crust 

  • 60 g quick oats 
  • 30 g all-purpose flour 
  • 30 g brown sugar 
  • 30 g unsalted butter, melted 
  1. To make the tart shells, sift together flour and spices 
  2. Mix together cold butter and sugar using a wooden spoon until blended
  3. Mix in egg yolks
  4. Add flour mixture all at once, mix, then transfer onto a surface and gently knead dough together until everything just combined
  5. Wrap with plastic wrap, refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight
  6. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350ºF
  7. Knead dough until pliable
  8. Roll dough out to about 1/8 inch in thickness on a floured surface, dock with a fork
  9. Place inside slightly greased tart molds, trim off excess  
  10. Bake for about 8 minutes, let cool
  11. Meanwhile, prepare the fillings by mixing pear chunks with brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon and vanilla 
  12. Spoon into cooled tart shell 
  13. Mix all crust ingredients together and spoon on top of fillings
  14. Bake at 350ºF for about 25 minutes until golden 
  15. Serve warm 

 

 

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Chocolate Pistachio Tart

As a mom, my kids are always my priorities. But sometimes I feel it’s necessary to do something for myself….in order to keep my sanity ! So I made this dessert just for me ! It’s loaded with chocolate with a bit of crunch and saltiness from the pistachios. Did you know that pistachios are called the “happy nuts” in Chinese? Their partially opened shells look like a smile. They are an excellent source of vitamin B, fibre, potassium, magnesium and many more. No wonder I felt fantastic after eating them! 

Makes about three to four 4-inch tarts

For the chocolate tart

  • 120 g unsalted butter (cold)
  • 75 g granulated sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 170 g cake and pastry flour (sifted)
  • 10 g unsweetened cocoa powder (sifted)

For the filling

  • 2 ounces dark chocolate (finely chopped)
  • 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate (finely chopped)
  • 4 ounces whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 30 g salted pistachios (shells removed)
  1. Mix together cold butter and sugar using a wooden spoon until no more lumps
  2. Add egg yolk, mix until blended
  3. Add flour and cocoa powder, mix with the wooden spoon, then transfer onto a table or counter and gently press dough together (just work until ingredients are mixed in)
  4. Wrap with plastic wrap, refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350ºF
  6. Knead dough until pliable
  7. Roll dough out to about 1/8 inch in thickness on a floured surface, dock with a fork
  8. Place inside slightly greased tart molds, trim off excess dough (dough scraps can be re-roll, but only do it once or twice or it may crack)
  9. Bake for about 12 minutes till golden, let cool
  10. For the filling, crush pistachios into small pieces
  11. Heat whipping cream in a non-stick pot over medium heat until starting to bubble
  12. Pour cream over chopped chocolate, let stand for 1 minute
  13. Add vanilla extract, stir until smooth
  14. Mix in half of the crushed pistachios
  15. Pour into baked tart shells, sprinkle remaining pistachios on top 
  16. Let cool then put in refrigerator until set

Chocolate Pistachio Tart

 

Original chocolate tart shell recipe by Chef Marco Ropke at the Vancouver Pastry Training Centre 

 

Strawberry Vanilla Cream Tart

Strawberries ! One of our family favourites !  My son can “chomp down” (that’s his words) a bowl in no time! They taste good, look pretty and you can use them in many ways.  I always wish I have a bigger yard and more time so I can grow my own. Luckily, we have a few local farms close to our neighbourhood, and we can get fresh strawberries very easily.  I love the U-picks that they have in the early summer too ! It’s a great activity for both adults and kids.   

Makes about three to four 4-inch tarts

For the tart shell

  • 120 g cold unsalted butter (cut into small pieces)
  • 75 g granulated sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 180 g cake and pastry flour, sifted

For the fillings

    • 450 g (about 1 lb) fresh strawberries
    • 500 mL milk (preferably full fat, but 2 % works too)
    • 2 egg yolks
    • 75 g granulated sugar
    • 40 g cornstarch
    • 1/2 to 1 vanilla bean
    • icing sugar for dusting

To make the tart shells

  1. Mix together cold butter and sugar using a wooden spoon until no more lumps
  2. Add egg yolk, mix until blended
  3. Add flour all at once, mix with the wooden spoon, then transfer onto a table or counter and gently knead dough together (just work until ingredients are mixed in)
  4. Wrap with plastic wrap, refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350ºF
  6. Knead dough until pliable
  7. Roll dough out to about 1/8 inch in thickness on a floured surface, dock with a fork
  8. Place inside slightly greased tart molds, trim off excess dough (dough scraps can be re-roll, but may crack, so only re-roll once or twice)
  9. Bake for about 12 minutes till golden, let cool

To make the vanilla cream fillings

    1. Whisk egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch and 1/2 cup of milk together until no more lumps
    2. Cut vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape seeds out of bean pod, do not throw away bean pod
    3. In a pot, heat remaining milk, vanilla beans and the pod over medium heat until just boiled
    4. Whisk 1/2 of boiled milk slowly into egg mixture to temper, then pour everything back into the pot
    5. Heat until just starting to bubble and thicken, whisking constantly
    6. Remove from heat, take out vanilla pod and let cool

When ready to serve, pipe or spoon vanilla cream into baked tart shell, top with fresh strawberries and icing sugar

Original tart shell and vanilla cream recipe by Chef Marco Ropke at the Vancouver Pastry Training Centre 

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This is my first ever collaborative post, how exciting ! The Canadian Food Creatives collaboration are featuring fresh strawberries this month ! Be sure to check out the links below for other great recipes. They can also be found on social media using the hashtag #CDNFoodCreatives . Many thanks to Amanda Saxby at The Cinnamon Scrolls for hosting.

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