This Friday a group of friends will be gathering in my sister's garden for an informal Summer cocktail party. Since the entire savory menu consists of delicious bite-sized finger food, the theme should carry over to the desserts. That's why an assortment of mini tartlets will make up the dessert selection. In this recipe, the tartlet crust is homemade, and the shells are filled with store-bought lemon curd. However, feel free to get creative with the shells: vanilla custard, chocolate pudding, or cheesecake batter would be delicious fillings. To get the basic recipe,
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
10 Tbs. (1 1/4 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten with 1 Tbs. water
1 jar (28 oz.) lemon curd filling
Whipped cream, meringue, fresh fruit or candied ginger for garnish
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt and pulse once to mix. Add the butter and process in short pulses until pea-size crumbs form, 20 to 25 seconds. While pulsing, add the egg yolk mixture and process until large, moist crumbs form, 10 to 15 seconds more.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, shape the dough into a ball and divide it in half. Shape each half into a flat, 5-inch disk, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Position a rack in the center of an oven and preheat to 400ºF.
- Working with one piece of dough at a time, roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 12 rounds. Transfer a round to each well of a 12-well mini-tart plaque or mini-muffin pan.
- Using your fingers, press the pastry to fit into the well. Bake until the tart shells are evenly golden and crisp, 18 to 22 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool for 5 minutes, then remove the tart shells from the pan and cool to room temperature.
- Fill each tart shell with 1 1/2 Tbs. tart filling. Garnish with whipped cream, meringue, fresh fruit or candied ginger.
Makes 12 tarts.
- Desserts, Pies/Tarts