Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pineapple Tarts

Pineapple Tarts is seriously our favourite Chinese New Year Snacks. I would generally tried this at every house we go visiting to especially it is politeness to at least eat something at every house.

There are generally two versions of pineapple tarts ~ one with the jam wrapped in and the other with it exposed. We prefer the wrapped-in ones. It is rather hard to find really good exposed ones as those available outside are very dry.

Almost all Chinese New Year goodies are labour intensive and time consuming in making them. Pineapple tarts are one of those most time consuming ones. The wrapped-in ones should be nicely wrapped and each should be bite size, about 1/2 of our thumb size or 1/3 of our fourth finger. Some say exposed ones are easier as most are made with molds and jam is just placed into it. But traditionally, lines are made with clippers to make them look more flower-like and prettier. So that is too me no less labour intensive. Also you must make sure jam cooked is not too dry for this type as the jam is baked exposed.

I started mine by making the jam in December. Good jam is a must. The pure fragrance of 100% pineapple, especially good ones, cannot be compromised.

The Jam:
3-4 no of pineapple, nicely ripe
4-5 no of cloves
1 tablesp of minced ginger
1:3 ratio of sugar to pineapple juice and pulps, i.e. 500 gm of coarse sugar to 1500gm of pineapple juice and pulp

1) Skin off and rid the eyes. Cut pineapple into small pieces and blend in a blender. Add 1/2 cup of water with the first batch blended. Strain to get the juice, which will be used for subsequent blending. Weigh the juice and pulps before deciding on the amount of sugar.

2) Put all ingredients in a good pot and boil uncovered. Once boiled, turn to small fire and let it cook into jam like. Stirring all the while. It will take approx 4 hours for about 2 kg of pineapple juice and pulps. If you used good, thick, stainless steel pot like AMC, you can let it simmer over fire, only stirring 4-5 times in one hour while you go about doing other things.

3) Cook until when you stir the pineapple jam, you can split the jam and see the bottom of pot without it flowing back immediately.

4) Keep in container, cool and chilled in fridge and use only the next day. If you cook it well, this will keep even up to a year. Please dont reduce too much sugar cause without the right amount, the jam will grow fungus in no time.

The Skin Dough:
This is the best skin dough i have. It is really short and will crumble in your mouth yet it does not break during baking. It is definitely a money making recipe for some people. It seems that one tub of 100 tarts is going for about RM 38 to 40 in Kuching.

260gm of good butter, salted
70 gm of castor sugar
1/2 no of egg
380 gm of plain flour sifted

1) Beat butter and sugar til white and fluffy. Add egg and finally flour. No additionaly flour is need for moulding/shaping. The dough feels sticky but it does not stick onto your hand. Let it rest in fridge for an hour or so before moulding. It's easier tp shape it that way.

2) Egg wash your tarts with 1 egg + 1 egg yolk with a few drops of cooking oil.

3) Grease your pan and bake your tarts at 160 deg without fan for 15-20 min till lightly brown.

4) Take out and egg wash again. Bake at 180 deg without fan for 8 to 10 min till glossy golden brown.

5) Cool slightly before keeping in containers.

Definitely time consuming especially when it is one bite only. But hey, homemade ones are different and worth the effort.


CK Ng said...

How come each one has a different shape? :p

Anonymous said...

Thank u for the recipe. I made pineapple jams for the first time last year n it was a real torture cooking the jam. this year i think i'll buy the jam. my pastry also was too doughy, a real mouthful.


Anonymous said...

A Terri: Try cooking the jam with AMC pot. Tell you they are the best. cause without the thickness it get burn so easily and the jam will shoot all the way to the ceiling. i just leave it cooking stirring a few times while i do other stuffs.

CK: Hmmm...CK they are all the same shape to me like ovalish longish. did you see any squares or rectangles? maybe sizes not so even. what to do. not expert ma. also i have some 8-10 years old child labour helpers hehehe...

-popjammerz- said...

Hey, the pineapples are different from ours here...can't see the pineapples jutting out~it's cute!

Anonymous said...

oh! i bought e jam already! and I was looking for a good dough recipe (i wanted the covered ones) so yup, thanks! anyway, I was wondering 1/2no egg means half a beaten egg? and for e eggwash, what kind of oil u use? vegetable or corn? thanks alot!!

Anonymous said...

ohohoh, another question! how many does it make? my jam is a prepacked 1kg.. so should I double/triple e recipe? thanks alot alot!

Anonymous said...

ohmygod. i forgot to sign off! i'm mel!(:

Anonymous said...

Hi Mel. the dough should make at least 130 to 150 or 160. Before you double or triple, try out first. when i made mine first 100 all by myself. i almost fall asleep wrapping them n wanted to abandon the rest of the dough. then some kids sit down and help out and chit chat and it was much nicer.

1kg of jam makes soooo much...because you only use something like 1/3 teasp each time.
i think you take 1/3 jam out and try with the recipe. if you really like it then double the dough and do the rest. Get a person or two to work together. less boring that way.

1 egg + 1 egg yolk beaten up and oil can be both corn or vegie. i used corn. egg washing two times will make really shinier surface. it is my mooncake way of egg washing. you can use 1 egg yolk + 1/2 egg white with oil if you only made like 100 or so. so you crack an egg, discard some white then beat it up and finally drop a few drop of oil. btw, get a nice small paint brush. easier.

Anonymous said...

Hello Nee!(:

THe recipe calls for "1/2 no of egg" in e batter.. does that mean half an egg? thank you!


Anonymous said...

yes beat the egg up with a fork and use half the amount.

Anonymous said...


ohmygod! i forgot to tell you how much the people around me LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE the pastry!!!(: haha. they said e pastry is nicer than e jam itself!(e jam was storebought)

yay! and im gonna make them for e 3rd time tonight!!!



Anonymous said...

i followed the recipe (creaming method) and the tarts seemed to have little cracks unlike yours that seems perfect. And i'm wondering will the tarts have the same melt in your mouth texture when using the rubbing method?

Thanks loads!

Anonymous said...

hi aj it gets better with practice. this year mine is looks even better.

if you use rubbing i suggest you try the food processor. those with give more short kinda effect. put flour sugar in food processor. work the machine then add egg and butter. mix til just blend. but this recipe is try by quite a few readers and they all find it very short.

Anonymous said...

I added your blog to bookmarks. And i’ll read your articles more often!

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