Firecrackers, red packets, lion dances and reunion dinners - these are the quintessential elements that make Chinese New Year mirthful and vibrant. But beyond these, the small pineapple tart is the biggest unsung hero of the festive season. This unforgettable mainstay of the New Year goodies spread comes in all shapes and sizes, but the effect and pleasure derived from a single bite of these precious ingots is always the same. The crumbly tart melts in your mouth, yielding its succulent pineapple paste within that teases your palate with irresistible joy. So go ahead, do yourself a favor and have a taste of prosperity, good health and all things nice!
(Adapted from Rasa Malaysia)
- For the pastry:
- 350 g of Plain Flour
- 4 tbsp of Icing Sugar
- 2 tbsp of Cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 225 g of good quality Unsalted Butter (softened to room temperature)
- 2 Egg Yolks
- 1/4 tsp of Vanilla Bean Paste
- For egg wash:
- 1 Egg Yolk
- 1/2 tbsp of Condensed Milk
- For pineapple paste:
- 2 Fresh Pineapples or 3 cans of Sliced Pineapples (20 oz each)
- Heaping 1/2 Cup of Sugar (to taste)
Adapted from cookism.tumblr.com
1. For fresh pineapples, remove the skin and cut them into chunks for easy blending. If you are using canned pineapple slices instead, drain and squeeze away excess liquid with your hands. Blend pineapples just enough till mushy.
2. Add blended pineapple and sugar into a non-stick saucepan. Stir well and cook under medium low heat, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to prevent burning. This process will take a while, It will be ready when most of the liquid has evaporated and the paste turns golden. Transfer pineapple paste to a large bowl and let it cool in the fridge.
3. In the meantime, make the pastry. Sieve flour, icing sugar, salt and cornstarch in a large mixing bowl. Add in softened butter into flour mixture. Gently rub butter into the flour with your fingertips until mixture appears like fine crumbs. Add in egg yolks and vanilla bean paste. Gently mix the dough till the ingredients begin to combine. Turn it out onto a work surface and knead to form a dough.The dough is ready when it does not stick to your hand. Add a little butter if it is too dry. Shape dough into a ball and wrap it in a plastic wrap and chill it for 30 minutes before using.
4. Roll cooled pineapple paste into 30 or 40 equal balls, depending on the size of the pineapple tart that you are aiming to make. Firm the pineapple balls in the fridge if you have time.
5. Likewise, divide dough into 30 or 40 equal balls. You can use a kitchen scale for higher accuracy. Flatten dough ball with your fingers and place the pineapple ball in the middle. Carefully wrap the pineapple paste with the dough and shape it into your preferred pineapple tart design.
6. Preheat oven to 180C. Transfer the pineapple tarts onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Combine egg yolk and condensed milk in a bowl and brush the tarts with egg wash. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or till tart turns light brown. Allow tarts to cool before digging into it! Enjoy!
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