Monday, January 16, 2012

Pineapple Tarts 黄梨挞/菠萝酥

Chinese New Year is coming soon! :) Of course, there will be a ton of food over the new year. If I were a good Asian person, I would have started prepping for the new year a month ago, but I'm a terrible Asian person, so I only started thinking about it over the weekend.

Anyway, anyone who has seen me over Chinese New Year knows that I'm a sucker for pineapple tarts, and have known which relative's house have the best pineapple tarts. Both my grandmothers make pineapple tarts, and several other relatives make pineapple tarts too. Also, my aunt Annie often buys me famous pineapple tarts around the island (these things can cost $1 a tart or upwards of $30 a jar - way more than any cookie at Aunty Anne's) for Chinese New Year, and even when I go home during the holidays.

Yes, pineapple tarts are my kind of thing. I like those with slightly crumbly and epicly buttery pastries, and sweet, but slightly tart fillings. I'm going to have just one more before I start writing this post. This has got to be one of life's proudest moments yet... *omnomm*

Ingredients for Pineapple Filling (for ~ 60 pineapple tarts)
  • 1 pineapple
  • 3 cloves
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon powder
  • 3/4 cup sugar

Ingredients for Pastry (for ~ 60 pineapple tarts)
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup confectioners sugar or 1/4 cup normal sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • eggwash

  • Before cutting up the pineapple, try pulling off one of the inner leaves of the pineapple. If the leaf comes out easily, the pineapple is ripe. If not, wait for a few days and try again. 
  • Cut off the ends of the pineapple (about 1/2 inch from each side), and cut off all the tough outer skin.
  • Cut down the sides of the pineapple, removing the core. 
  • Cut the pineapple meat into small pieces, and blend with a food processor or blender.

the colors of pineapple puree throughout cooking

  • Pour the pureed pineapple into a sauce pan. 
  • Add cloves and cinnamon powder to the pineapple puree.
  • Heat the sauce pan until the mixture starts to boil. 
  • When the mixture boils, turn the heat down to a simmer.
  • Stir the mixture often so that nothing boils.
  • After an hour or two, the mixture will resemble a thick puree.
  • Turn the heat up, and stir vigorously, until the puree keeps its shape while poked (last picture).
  • Let cool.

  • In a blender (or if you don't have a blender like me, go rustic and use hands!) mix the butter and sugar together. 
  • Add in the rest of the ingredients and blend, or knead until everything is combined.
  • Roll out the dough, and using a cookie cutter (I don't have a cookie cutter either, so I used the screw cap for my McCormick spices - works surprisingly well!) to cut out circle shapes.
  • Line a cookie sheet with baking paper, and place the dough on the cookie sheet.
  • Bake the cookie sheet for 5 minutes at 350F.

  • After 5 minutes, remove the dough from the oven, and spoon about 1 1/2 teaspoon of pineapple filling onto each piece of dough. (Jas helped with this!)
  • Using a brush, add eggwash to the dough. (I did this with some, but it was too irritating, so I didn't wash it with eggwash.)
  • Bake for another 7 - 10 minutes at 350F.
  • Let cool and serve.

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