Monday, September 28, 2009

Honied Pineapple Citrus Tartlets

It's finally happened... you get to see my messy kitchen!

Oh but yes, that is a pizza stone hanging halfway off the counter. Yes, that is a martini glass being used as a cookie cutter. Lastly, yes, that is a tape measure in the background.

Here's the finished product:

See? Totally worth getting a little flour in my hair. And in my contact lenses. And maybe a little under my toenails.

Honied Pineapple Citrus Tartlets



2 pineapples, peeled, cored, and diced
1 c. holly honey
1 c. orange juice
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tsp. soy sauce
Juice of 1/2 lime


2 c. flour
2/3 c. chilled salted butter, cut into small squares
About 4 Tbsp. cold water


Cut the butter and flour together until it looks dusty but with round things in it, like the surface of the moon. Add the water slowly, kneading as you go, until the dough sticks together in a big ball. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and chill.

Meanwhile, throw all the filling ingredients into a large saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium. Simmer until it has the consistency of jam; the pineapple may or may not break down all the way. I halved the recipe, so you should have about twice as much as pictured below.

Preheat the oven to 350.

Roll out the tartlet dough on a floured surface to a thickness of 1/8". If you have a small surface, like my pizza stone, you may need to reassemble the dough and roll it back out multiple times. If this is the case, you will be touching it with your hot human hands, and it will get gummy. Pop it back in the fridge for a few minutes at a time as needed.

Using a round cookie cutter (or other object approximately 4 1/2" in diameter, such as my martini glass), cut out a dozen rounds and lay them on an ungreased cookie sheet. Spoon a couple tablespoons of filling into the center of each. Fold the edges over so that the filling is contained, but you can still see it.

Scrape the dregs from the filling saucepan and smear them onto the edges of the crusts if you prefer a caramelized glaze.

Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes, or until the crusts have just browned. Remove from oven and cool on a rack. Makes 1 dozen tartlets.

In case you're curious, no, not all the ingredients in this dessert are local. I may make my own salt, but I am not to the point of making my own soy sauce and rice vinegar yet. I figured I may as well use what I have in my fridge. No point in letting it go to waste.

I did use a local pineapple, and was rewarded vomitaciously for my efforts. In fact, the sawdust flavor of this damned pineapple was what inspired me to gussy it up into a jam to begin with. I guess it's true that, just because something grows all year round, doesn't mean you should eat it year round. Pineapple really is more of a winter fruit. Why, oh, why did I think I could cheat nature?

Three of the gussying ingredients (OJ, lime, and honey) were also local, and much yummier. Citrus is another wintery treat, so it amazes me how commercial growers manage to get good juice in September. Uncle Matt's Organics is the farm of geniuses.

Also in case you're curious: Yes, soy sauce makes it better. I inherited a craving for sweet-n-salty desserts from my mother, who introduced me to chocolate covered potato chips and cookies made with salted butter plus extra salt. I don't use that much salt in cooking, but when it comes to baking... boy, I gotsta have it.

Tartlets are a wide open playing field. You can make them sweet or savory, or anything in between. I'd love to see yours. If you have a shareable recipe involving tartlets, hook me up!

Beat the eggs. Whip the cream. Show no mercy.


VCarter123 said...

I am thinking maybe a honied citrus pineapple upside down CAKE? Since our pineapple crop is at least another year off... I'm off to good ole Publix for the pineapple. Mom

Tasty Eats At Home said...

You're too funny. I ALWAYS have stuff in the background of my pics of my counuter, just not enough space! Of course, I could put those things away...but still...

The Chickenless Chick said...

LOL... I was measuring the diameter of my martini glass so I could tell you guys what size to use.

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

I think your kitchen is even more cramped than mine!
I love the flavour combinations in your tartlets.