Tuesday, August 12, 2014

All-Canadian Butter Tarts

Canadians LOVE Butter Tarts and that's a fact! I've been making these for years and they always turn out great. I made today's batch with cake and pastry flour just to see if there is a difference and I think there is. The pastry is really light and flaky and I'll probably use the same flour from now on. The tarts should not be over-baked because the filling is best if it is gooey and runny. You'll need a plate to eat these!

1/2 cup chilled butter, cut in cubes
3 Tbsp shortening (lard)
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
5-6 Tbsp ice water

1/2 cup raisins (Soaked in boiling water for 5 minutes then rinsed, drained and dried)
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup corn syrup
1 egg beaten
1 tsp vanilla
few drops lemon juice

1. For the dough: Sift together the flour and salt. In food processor pulse the flour with the butter and shortening until crumbly. With motor running, slowly start adding the tablespoons of ice water, one at a time. 5 is usually enough. The dough will make a ball and stop sticking to the container. Stop processing right away- do NOT over process or the dough will be tough. Shape into a ball, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for about an hour.

2. For the filling:  In a medium saucepan over medium high heat bring butter, brown sugar,salt, and corn syrup to a gentle simmer, stir just to blend. Simmer for 3 minutes, then let cool for about 5 minutes. Do not boil.

3. Slowly add beaten egg, vanilla and lemon juice to the butter mixture, stirring continuously. Mix well and set aside.

4. Preheat oven to 375F.

5. Roll out 1/2 the chilled dough at a time on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8-1/4 inch thickness. Use a 4" round cutter. Fit shells into a standard-size muffin tin. Put the empty tart shells in the freezer until the oven is well heated.

6. Drop spoonfuls of raisins into the bottom of the shells, then fill each about 3/4 full with the filling. Bake until crust is lightly golden and filling is barely set, about 15-20 minutes.

7. Let cool in the tins for a few minutes and then carefully lift out using a small knife.

Makes 12 tarts

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