I had a bit of leftover lemon curd from last week’s Pavlova recipe… I also have jar upon jar of home-made fruit jelly in the store cupboard. As someone who hates to waste anything, I thought I would make some simple lemon curd and jelly tarts.
Whether you’re rubbing in by hand or using a food mixer, the shortcrust pastry is a breeze…
…then fill with your preserve(s) of choice and bake. Start to finish in an hour or so. Perfect if you want to rustle up something quickly – or try a bit of baking with the kids.
You can leave them plain & simple – or perhaps pretty them up a bit. I garnished the top of the lemon curd tarts with a single blueberry and the jelly ones with a little sprinkle of dessicated coconut.
They’re a good finger food for a party or an afternoon or high tea. They’re simple, inexpensive and delicious – a great combination!
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Lemon curd and jelly tarts
- 180g/6oz plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 90g/3oz cold butter, cubed
- 3-4 tbsp cold water
- 8tbsp lemon curd
- 8tbsp fruit jelly or jam
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- Put the flour and salt into a food processor and whiz briefly together to mix
- Add the butter cubes and pulse briefly a dozen times or so until you have coarse crumbs
- Trickle in the water continuing to pulse until the mixture resembles rough lumps and looks a bit like overcooked and dry scrambled eggs. Add only as much water as you need
- Tip the clumped crumbs onto a sheet of cling film and gently squeeze together into a ball without pressing too hard
- Wrap & chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas mark 6
- Lightly grease a tartlet tin
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll the pastry out thinly
- Using a pastry cutter slightly larger than the circumference of a tartlet hole, cut out pastry rounds
- Press the pastry rounds evenly into each hole (I use the end of my rolling pin as a tamper)
- Fill each pastry case with about a teaspoon of lemon curd or jelly/jam
- Bake for 15 minutes
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the tin before attempting to remove them
- Allow them to cool completely on a wire rack
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One of the things that Todmorden is famous for is Incredible Edible, a group of local people who have started something of a revolution, growing food in public places in & around the town centre.
There are vegetables outside the police station and local community college, herbs along the canal tow-path and in the train station and an apothecary garden in the grounds of the health centre.
Everything is free for anyone to come along and help themselves – or even do a little weeding and clearing if the fancy takes them!
The train station is on one of our daily dog-walking routes and it’s been lovely watching the progress of the peas, red onions, chives and the like.
This week, along with the dog, I left the house with a pair of scissors and a carrier bag and cut a few stems of rhubarb – to use in a rhubarb and custard tart.
Rhubarb & custard is a classic British combination as is baked custard tart. I’ve put them together and come up with a delicious dessert.
I used the same pastry recipe as last week’s pear tart and made sure to add a tad more sugar than normal to the custard recipe… and a tablespoonful of Bird’s Custard Powder.
The sweetness of the custard and the tartness of the rhubarb worked incredibly well – I’ll be making this one again before the end of the rhubarb season.
It takes quite a few stages to make this French pear tart but it’s well worth the time and effort. If you don’t think you’ll have the time all in one day to do it, you can prepare most of it well in advance and bring it all together on the day you plan to bake & serve it.
You can whiz up the pastry, press it into the tart tin and freeze it… weeks in advance.
I must admit, it has got to be – by a country mile – the most delicious pastry I’ve ever made!
You can cut corners (and time) by using tinned pears or simply omitting the poaching stage if using fresh fruit.
The almond cream can be made a couple of days before and left covered & chilled in the fridge until just before it’s due to be put in the oven.
My rectangular tart tin is so large that I had to double up the almond cream recipe and cut the pears into quarters rather than halves.
The resulting tart is very attractive (not to mention photogenic!) and can be cut so each person gets a neat slice of pear.
It’s moist and sweet – sweet enough to serve with a dollop of tangy crème fraîche or thick Greek yoghurt on the side.
The perfect bake for a dinner party or daily treat.
I bought myself a brand new, fluted loose-bottomed tart tin this week and couldn’t wait to use it!
I decided to make a spinach, cheese & onion tart from a recipe that I tore out of a Telegraph magazine a few weeks ago.
A couple of spoonfuls of English mustard adds a nice piquancy and depth of flavour.
We got six, good portions from the tart which can be eaten either hot or cold.
It’s perfect for a light lunch with a few salad leaves – and can be made well in advance if you’ve got guests coming and don’t want any last-minute stress.
We had it the following night as more substantial evening meal pairing it with paprika-salted potato skins and mixed salad.
There are all kinds of flavour variations possible using this basic method – bacon, chorizo, smoked salmon, goat’s cheese, mushroom…
Very delicious and very versatile.
We have some friends that live nearby who are having their kitchen renovated. For the next few weeks, all they’ll have to cook on is a single-burner camping stove.
We’ve been in the exact same position in the past – it’s such a drag! We invited them round to ours for dinner tonight so we thought we’d cook them something that they can’t currently make at home.
Justin’s making the main course – chicken breasts filled with a fennel, pastrami and chicken mousse with a spinach and pine nut lasagne – and I’m making the dessert.
In keeping with the loosely Mediterranean theme, I’ve cooked a honey-roasted fig & marzipan tart. You can buy ready-made shortcrust pastry to make the base, but it’s really easy to make yourself at home – a 2-minute job… honest!
I’ve not made this tart before – I hope it’s a hit tonight!
I’ve had quite a lot on this week, so didn’t have a great deal of time to dedicate to a long-drawn-out Cakes & Bakes recipe.
This no bake double choc nut tart is short on time, but big on taste and impact.
It would be perfect to make for a dinner party where there are a few courses to juggle in preparation.
The chocolate ganache is really simple to make and is rich and unctuous – a chocoholics dream!
The base can be made with chocolate digestive biscuits or, if you’re in the US and can’t get hold of them, Chocolate Creme Oreos are a good substitute.
I topped it with toasted chopped mixed nuts and finished with a few pecan halves but you can use walnuts, hazelnuts or whatever takes your fancy!
Serve with a dollop of crème fraîche or clotted cream and a sprig of mint to garnish – just perfection!