Sunday, April 18, 2010

Strawberry & Grenadine Cream Cheese Tartlets

A rainy weekend makes us all lazy to go out and rather laze around in our PJs watching TV and playing board games with the kids. But it is also these rainy days that makes us the parents spend quality time with our kids of which I find it even difficult to do for a stay home mom during the weekdays when they are so occupied with school and extra activities outside the house and I myself totally exhausted by mid day running errands and doing housework. And now more when I have to stick to an exercise regime everyday that practically sends me dozing off on the sofa by 9pm! I used to watch Korean dramas around bedtime and now I think of it, I wasted so much of my beauty sleep and energy on chasing cosmetic manufactured idols and should have slept early and build up my own natural beauty!

Today I started a new thing called Sunday lunches. We usually stay at home or walk and play around the neighborhood areas on Sundays unless the weather is very good when we will drive to somewhere and spend the day. Since Sunday is the only day when we can really sit down as a family to eat together without any rush to anywhere, I thought it is a good idea to turn off the weekend TV and set aside the laptops for an hour or two on the dining table and let my kids chat happily to Curry and myself about their thoughts and imaginations. And the best thing is after lunch, we all take a stroll to settle down and let the day goes by slow and relax without the fuss of dinnertime while the weekend ends and slips into another busy week ahead.

For teatime dessert, I served up individual Strawberry tartlets which were shaped into muffin tins, just the right size for everyone after a nice roast beef lunch. Although our local strawberry farms are yet to open, the supply at the grocery store is abundant and cheap. I cut some up in small chunks and mixed them into the grenadine flavored cream cheese and spooned them into the pre-baked tartlets. It is a bit of a work to load the tart dough into the muffin tins but the end result is more prettier than a big tart. I used the largest biscuit cutter that I have to cut out the dough and patted it into the tins. It is very important to grease the muffin tins or else it will be difficult to remove the baked tartlet cases without breaking it. I like the rustic look of these tartlet cases and the huge individual strawberries sitting on top of the lovely pink cream cheese which makes them so sweet in color and of course, cream cheese flavored with the subtle sweet smell of the grenadine syrup, sweet in taste and fun with bits and chunks of strawberry pieces blended into its creaminess. Cheers to springtime showers!

Recipe :

Ingredients :
Tartlet Dough/Cases :
1 cup All Purpose Flour
4 oz Cold Butter (1 stick)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tbsp sugar
1 extra egg, beaten

Grenadine Cream Cheese filling :
8 oz Low Fat Cream Cheese (1 pack)
1-1/2 tbsp Grenadine Syrup
1 tbsp sugar
5 to 6 strawberries, hulled and diced to small pieces
10 to 12 strawberries for garnish and some spearmint leaves

Method :
Tartlet cases :
1)Cut the cold butter into smaller cubes and place into the food processor. Pour in flour and sugar and process till resembling coarse crumbs, about 45 seconds on high.
2)Pour in egg and continue to process for another 30 seconds till all the crumbs come together and clump up to become a dough. If feels dry and not coming together, add in some water.
3)Take out dough and knead for 20 seconds, shape into a disk and place in plastic bag and let the dough rest in the fridge for 30 mins.
4)Grease 8 to 10 muffin pans. Trace the bottom of the muffin tins onto parchment paper and cut out 10 parchment rounds. Set aside.
5)Take out dough and let it stand at room temperature for 5 mins before starting to roll it out. Flour the working surface and roll the dough to about 1/4 inch thick. Using the largest round cookie or biscuit cutter, cut out 10 circles . Lift one and place into the muffin tin. Using your fingers, slowly pat in the dough to the sides of the muffin tin. Continue with the rest. Prick the bottom of the dough with fork. Cover with cling film and return to the fridge to rest for another 30 mins.
6)Preheat oven to 375F. Take out dough and place one parchment paper round into each of the dough lined muffin tin. Place some baking beans onto the parchment rounds. Bake for 15 mins on the bottom rack.
7)Remove from the oven, and take out the baking beans and parchment rounds. Return to the oven and bake for another 12 to 15 mins till cases are slightly browned.
8)Turn off the oven and take out the baked cases. Beat one egg and using a brush,egg wash the inside bottom and sides of each tartlet case (so that the tartlets will not turn soggy when filled and placed in the fridge). Return to the oven to dry up for 5 mins.
9)Cool completely before filling in the cream cheese mixture.

Grenadine Cream Cheese Filling :
1)Beat the cream cheese and sugar till creamy.
2)Add in the grenadine syrup and continue to blend.
3)Spoon in the diced strawberries and distribute the filling into the tartlet cases.
4)Garnish each tartlet with a strawberry and mint leaf.
5)Place in the fridge before serving.

Makes : 8 to 10 tartlets

1 comment:

Aggie said...

Why nobody comment this? this is so pretty and yummy looking!!!