Friday, April 25, 2014

Cherry Pecan Tartlets

I love anything baked in a mini muffin pan!  I came across this recipe in a magazine, where you can make the dough once and then use it in a couple of different recipes. The dough in this recipe is rugelach dough, which is lovely dough of butter and cream cheese. I like rugelach, as you can fill rugelach with just about anything you want. This takes the dough, puts it in the muffin cup, and is then filled.

I changed the filling for these, since these are like rugelach and you can fill them with what you like. The filling was supposed to be dried apples and walnuts. I like pecans much more, so I used those. I didn’t have dried apples at home (sometimes I do) so I used dried cherries. I think pecan and cherries are a great combination. I left the cinnamon out of the filling because I didn’t know how that would work with dried cherries.

This is supposed to make 3 dozen; I made about 3 and a half dozen, but ran out of filling. The filled the remaining tartlets with mincemeat. There’s nothing like Christmas in April! It was fairly tedious shaping the dough into the muffin pans. I do that somewhat frequently, but this time it seemed like it took forever. Luckily everything else is pretty quick. I was able to bake all of them at the same time, so that saved some time. These are almost not a cookie, much more like pastry. The filling is sweet, but the tartness of the cherries balances the sweetness. 

Cherry Pecan Tartlets
1 cup butter, room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
2 cups flour
½ teaspoon salt

¾ cup chopped pecans
2/3 cup chopped dried cherries
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Make the dough: in a large mixer bowl, combine the butter, cream cheese, vanilla and brown sugar. Beat on medium until light. With the mixer on low, add the flour and stir and stir until the dough comes together. Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough at least 2 hours, or up to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray three 12-indentation mini muffin pans with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the pecans, dried cherries, brown sugar, the egg, and melted butter. Stir until the mixture comes together.

Shape the dough into 1-inch balls and place one ball of dough in each mini muffin cup. Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Spoon a small amount of filling in each of the cups, taking care not to over fill the cups.

Bake for 18-20 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then gently remove each tartlet from the pan and cool completely.

Recipe from Good Housekeeping

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