Thursday, March 22, 2012

Honey Citron Custard Tartlets

And I thought I was not ever returning to this Blog!

Phew...what a hectic time since my last post. Disappointment, Frustration and Tiresome all bundled up and filled those days and still on going with my next Home search. Never did I realize that this House Hunting process can take up so much of my time and even Sundays are spent somewhere looking besides baking.

Easter will be here soon and Spring indeed is lovely this year. The warmer weather brings more energy and I am now counting to the days when my kids and I can go to the fruit farms again to pick up some berries. Spring cleaning is in the process and time to re-arrange things here and there and throw out the old and hoping to get new ones. De-cluttering is the new and next therapeutic thing to me and so far, I have managed to junk out all ugly bottles and containers from my pantry and the next is to throw out old and extra baking stuffs that I placed around only for sentimental value and no more purpose at all!

To get away from all the craze, I made these tartlets using some left over Honey Citron that was sitting at the back of my fridge. This particular blend of Honey and Citron peels and juice are widely drank in Korea and even in Japan for extra intake of Vitamin C and usually I mix it with Hot water for a quick warming drink during cold nights.

The recipe for these tartlets are fairly easy and should yield one 8 inch tart by itself and I made them with smaller 4 inch tartlet pans. The most important thing is not to overwork the tart dough and the batter for the custard filling is a cinch to make. I ran out of heavy cream and used Almond milk instead of regular milk, hence giving the tartlets a creamier and heavier nutty taste. I am glad that I have not lost my baking passion despite most of my tools have been packed away for the future moving. Sometimes people do lose interest in things they once loved to do over a period of time and since my last bake in early February, I was almost at that brink of losing it already. Till my own daughter asked me if I still remember how to bake bread! Well, I made these tartlets and she chowed down one before dinner and said I was Still good :).

Recipe (yields one 8 inch deep tart OR six of 4 inch Tartlets)

Tart Dough: 300g All Purpose Flour; 180g cold soft butter; 1 tbsp sugar; 1 large egg

Custard Filling: 225g Neuchatel Cream Cheese; 2 large Eggs; 160ml Heavy cream or Milk; 100g sugar; 5 tbsp of Honey Citron blend

Tart Dough:
  • Crumble and rub the butter into the flour and sugar. Using fingers, crumble and mix these 2 ingredients till evenly coated and light and airy. About 2 to 3 mins.
  • Beat in the egg and stir to mix. The dough will feel cool and work quickly with your hands to mix it into a ball. The dough must not look cracked or dry, if so, add 1 tbsp water at a time till the dough is like cookie dough. Place in plastic bag and let it rest in the fridge for about 30 mins.
  • Take out and roll out to line the tart or tartlet pans. Prick the bottom and return to the fridge to rest a further 15 mins. Preheat the oven to 375F.
  • Line the tartlet dough with parchment paper and baking beans. Bake for about 20 to 25 mins in the middle rack. Remove paper and beans at the last 5 mins of baking and complete baking. Remove and cool completely.
Custard Filling :
  • Beat the neuchatel Cream cheese with the sugar till creamy. Beat in eggs one at a time to mix.
  • Spoon in the Honey citron and stir to mix in.
  • Pour in the Heavy cream Or milk. The batter will be like pouring custard, heavy and thick.
  • Lower the temperature of the oven to 350F.
  • Using a ladle, scoop the custard batter and slowly fill up the tart or tartlet pans to the rim. Place the tartlet pans on a larger baking sheet and insert into the oven.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 mins till the filling is set.
  • Let them cool completely on rack and chill for 1 hour, tastes better chilled. Garnish with powdered sugar.