Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Congress Tarts

I saw this recipe when it was first posted on Mainly Baking, but it just hasn’t seemed like the right time to bake them. They are perfect for tea, a springy treat featuring coconut, almond and jam. The weather has been so rainy this winter that I just haven’t felt it. Well, it is spring now and the weather is starting to improve some, so I figured it was time to make them.

These tarts are somewhat similar to a Bakewell tart, which has a layer of jam covered with an almond filling. These tarts are supposed to use raspberry jam, but I only had strawberry jam so I used that. This recipe calls for desiccated coconut, which is quite a bit different than shredded coconut that you buy here in the States. I often had desiccated coconut on hand, but I have to buy it at a specialty store and I didn’t stock up. I took shredded coconut, toasted it for about 10 minutes, and then processed it in the food processor. It’s not quite as fine as desiccated coconut, but it’s pretty close.

You can use homemade or store bought pastry for these, whichever works best for you. I was actually able to make 12 regular muffin-sized tarts and 5 mini tarts with this recipe. I haven’t been baking as much and these are a touch more involved. Cut the pastry, spread the jam, make the filling, shape the filling. The hardest part was knowing when they were baked, as it’s tough to tell if the pastry is done. I baked mine about 23 minutes. I love the flavor of these! Coconut, almond, lemon zest and the jam come together to make the best tart I’ve had in a really long time.

Congress Tarts
Pastry for a one crust pie
4 tablespoons jam
8 ounces sugar
8 ounces ground almonds
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 egg whites
2 ounces desiccated (shredded) coconut
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
zest of one lemon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 12-hole muffin pan.

Roll out the pastry and cut out circles large enough to line the bottom and up the sides of the muffin cups. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Remove the pastry from the fridge and spread about 1 teaspoon jam in the base of each muffin cup.

In a large bowl, combine the sugar, ground almonds and cornstarch. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until white foamy. Pour into the almond mixture. Add the coconut, almond extract and lemon zest and mix well.

Shape about 2 tablespoons of the almond/coconut mixture into a ball and place in the muffin cup. Press down slightly to seal the edges.

Bake for 15-25 minutes, until golden brown on top, and the pastry is cooked underneath. Remove the tarts from the pan and cool on a wire rack.

Recipe via Mainly Baking

1 comment:

Suelle said...

So pleased you liked the recipe! Your version looks lovely.