By the time this is published, most of you would have seen,baked and eaten one pineapple tart too many in the last few weeks to want to read about yet another Pineapple Tart post...
As popular and festive as it may be for Chinese New Year, I have never made the pineapple tart before. I wrote about how futile it would be to try to create a tart that is good enough to hold its own against the myriads of family heirloom recipes here. A couple of sightings last few weeks prompted me to give this a go this year. First glimpse was sighted on Ju's Tweet. Second came in the form of a step by step guide to homemade pineapple jam at Wendy's blog.
Some of you may know that I had traveled to 2 continents and 3 regions in the last 2 weeks. I touched down at midnight last Saturday and was already stirring at my first batch of pineapple jam on Sunday morning. Made with ripe pineapples, I found the jam too sweet even though I had reduced the amount of sugar suggested by the recipe. In my desperation, I tried to balance the sweetness with fresh lime juice. This complemented the jam so well that for all subsequent batches, I retained the lime juice component.
For me, the element that blew my mind was the little ball of homemade jam on the buttery pastry. Juicier and fruitier, this is starkly different from the dry sticky pre-packed paste sold at bakery supply stores. And really, cooking the jam is more easy and effortless than I had originally thought.
Typical of me and prompted by my vegetarian sister, I also experimented with organic wholemeal flour for the pastry. The pastry took on the strange musty brown colour of the wheat flour. Although the texture was very similar to the cookie made with refined all-purpose flour, a 'wheaty'/grassy after taste lingered. I am not keen to see the scrunched up faces of friends I will be serving these to, so I guess between my sister and myself, we will have to clean these up.
P.S.: Just learnt that j3ss kitch3n is hosting a Aspiring Bakers event for 'My Favourite CNY Cookie'. I shall contribute this to join in the fun!
Pastry (Adapted from Ju's Recipe)
200g All purpose flour
50g Corn flour
1 tbsp Icing sugar
1/4 tsp Salt
2 Egg yolks
1/2tsp Vanilla extract
1.5 tbsp Cold water
1 egg yolk for glazing
1. Sift flour,corn flour,icing sugar and salt together in a mixing bowl. Refrigerate for 5 mins.
2. Cut chilled butter into cubes.
3. Add cubed butter into flour and work the butter into the butter with finger tips until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
4. Mix egg yolks, vanilla extract and cold water together in a cup. Add this to (3). Work briskly with finger tips to mix the liquid with the flour. Gather the dough into a ball and refrigerate for 10-15 mins.
5. Roll out dough to 0.8mm thickness. Cut dough with pineapple tart cutter.
6. Brush egg yolk glaze over the cut dough.
7. Place a ball of pineapple jam on the dough.
8. Bake at 160C for 20mins. Cool down and store in air tight containers.
Pineapple Jam (Please refer to Wendy's post if you need more details)
1000g Semi ripe pineapple, cut into chunks and puree in a blender.
150g Castor sugar
1 Lime juice
2 Twigs of cinnamon
1. Place pureed pineapple into a large heavy pot.
2. Add lime juice, and cinnamon. Heat over medium heat until 80% of moisture has evaporated. Stirring occasionally.
3. Add sugar. Stir once and leave to reduce further over medium -low heat until jam is 90% dry.
4. Increase heat and continue heating for another 10mins. Stirring 2-3 times to avoid burning.
5. Reduce heat to low and further dry up jam.
6. Remove from heat and cool down completely.