It is very common after baking a pie to have a left over of pastry dough. If the left overs are carefully frozen in a freezer bag, eventually you will have enough dough to prepare delicious mini tarts.
This time we used our left overs to prepare mini lemon cream tarts, which can be used as individual desserts.
5oz (150 gr) butter
1/4 cup (50gr) sugar
2 egg yolks
2 cups (240 gr) flour (0000 preferred)
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons of preferred liqueur
1 cup (397cc) condensed milk
4 egg yolks
½ cup milk
1 tablespoon (7gr) unflavored gelatin
1 tablespoon corn starch
½ cup (125cc) unfiltered lemon juice
Peel and juice of one large orange (84cc) (a little bit less than 3oz)
4 egg whites
1 cup (200gr) sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons corn starch
In a food processor, combine the flour, the salt, the baking powder and the butter, cut into cubes. Process the ingredients until the butter combines with the flour forming a granulated preparation.
Add the sugar, the egg yolks and the liqueur.
Process until the ingredients are well combined and turned into a dough.
Put processor bowl in the refrigerator for the dough to rest and get firm.
How to make the tarts:
Remove dough from the refrigerator and gently scoop out into a ball. Divide the ball in half.
Leave half of the dough in the refrigerator while working with the other half.
Roll the dough until it's thin, but not too thin, so the tarts have a firm consistency once they are baked.
Use 2.75" (7cm) diameter, 1" (2.50) high mini tart molds. There is no need to flour and butter the molds.
Place the dough on the mold and press it down until firm and thick. Repeat same procedure with the rest of the dough. Punch the dough with a fork and put it in the freezer for a few minutes for it to get firm.
Mix the unflavored gelatin with the orange juice.
In a medium saucepan, combine the condensed milk, the egg yolks, the milk and the lemon juice.
Dissolve the corn starch with a little bit of cold milk and add it to the preparation together with the orange peel.
Microwave the gelatin with the orange juice for a few seconds to dissolve it. (DO NOT let it boil, otherwise the gelatin goes bad). As an alternative, the gelatin can be dissolved on a double boiler with warm water.
Once completely dissolved, add it to the condensed milk preparation.
Heat preparation on a medium fire, stirring constantly until it comes to a boil and starts to thicken.
Remove from heat and let it cool. While the mixture is cooling off, make sure to stir the it periodically to prevent a film from forming.
Swiss meringue to decorate:
Click here Swiss Meringue (also known as warm meringue)
and follow the recipe to prepare Swiss Meringue.
Putting everything together.....
Fill in each tart shell with the lemon cream up to the edge. Use a spatula to even it out.
Refrigerate until lemon cream is firm. To check for readiness touch the lemon cream with your finger and if it comes out with some cream attached to it, the mini tarts are ready to be decorated.
Swiss Meringue has a creamy, but firm consistency, which makes it ideal to decorate desserts.
Use a disposable decorating bag with a big star tip. (The tip number depends on the brand)
Place the tip at the center of the tart and push the meringue down while slowly elevating the tip to create a 2 inch high column.
This column will not stay firm, so another one has to be made next to it right away to support the first one. Then continue making columns to support the others, always leaning them towards the first one, until the entire surface of the tart is covered.
Repeat procedure with all the tart shells.
As a final touch, a culinary torch can be used to slightly brown the meringue.
Once finished, they look very nice with their high meringue decoration.
Take great pride in serving this delicate dessert.