This post is updated on 9th January 2014 with the inclusion of a VEGETARIAN RECIPE. This recipe is egg less, milk less and butter less. Please scroll down towards the end of the post for vegetarian recipe. Both recipes share the same steps of illustration.
Second updates on 20 July 2014 : New Picture Taking
I told myself, I must set aside my time to write this post. I have lost my recipe twice. Once, accidentally thrown away by my wife as she thought it is my kids recycle paper and in another incident, I have typed down in a notepad in my old computer but I just can’t locate it when I switched to my new computer. So this time, I told myself that I must publish in my blog so that I have multiple copies and if I lost it, maybe I can still get a copy from my readers ! Ha-ha
PINEAPPLE TARTS DEFINED
As usual, I will give some standard definition of the food that I am going to post so as to give readers a better understanding on what they are going to prepare! As per Wikipedia:
“Pineapple tarts refer to small, bite-size pastries filled with or topped with pineapple jam found in different parts of Asia. In South East Asia exists one form of Pineapple tart. The pastry consists of a large proportion of butter and egg yolk, besides using corn starch, giving it a rich, buttery, tender and melt-in-the-mouth texture. The pineapple jam is usually made by slowly reducing and caramelizing grated fresh pineapple that has been mixed with sugar and spices – usually cinnamon, star anise and cloves. Typical shapes include a flat, open tart topped with pineapple jam under a lattice of pastry, rolls filled with jam that are open at the ends and jam-filled spheres. Considered a “festive cookie”, pineapple tarts are usually consumed during Hari Raya, Chinese New Year and Deepavali periods in Singapore and Malaysia.[However, they are sold all year round by commercial bakeries and by souvenir stores serving tourists.” Source: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pineapple_tart)
MAJOR TYPES OF PINEAPPLE TARTS
There are many types of pineapple tarts and the basic types are:
1) The golf ball types or enclosed version. It is also called melt in the mouth types of pineapple tarts. This shall be the recipe that I will share with readers today.
2) The opened version whereby the pineapple jams sits on a flower like pastry.
Source : http://happyhomebaking.blogspot.sg
3) The half enclosed type or Nastar version whereby part of the jams were wrapped with two ends opened.It is also called pineapple rolls
PREPARATION OF PINEAPPLE TARTS
Preparation of pineapple tarts will involve the following two main parts:
Preparation of pineapple jam – I will not cover this part in this post. I have made my pineapple jam before but as I did not capture the images here, therefore, I will not share with readers here. Instead, if you are interested to make your own pineapple jam, you can visit this blogger’s video http://.bigheadmagicmad.com on how he makes the pineapple jam. For this illustration, I have opted to use the ready-made jam sold over the counter which can be easily bought in most supermarkets or cake specialty stores in Singapore and Malaysia.
The steps that I am going to detail here are rather unconventional and “unusual”. This is a method that I have used and found to be the easiest and fruitful method. If you follow this recipe and preparation illustration strictly, you will get a melt in the mouth buttery pastry. Unlike other posts, I am rather insistent on the method and ingredients used to achieve that quality of tarts made. It is via many trial and error that I have come out with this recipe. There are no corn flours or cream cheeses as in other recipes. The pastry is just using extremely simple ingredients low gluten wheat flours or normal wheat flours, butter, sugar and egg. The recipe uses creaming method as opposed to the rubbing method but provide equally light pastry that melts in your mouth.
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Pineapple Jams – Personally, I prefer the pineapple jam that are made with the pulps included. It will be slightly sour and fibrous. There are some category labelled as “premium quantity” (which is made purely from the flesh) but in my humble opinion, the jams will are too sweet and too soft for this golf shape pineapple tarts.
Salted Butter – I am rather insistent that it must be pure butter. No vegetable oil and mixture of vegetable oil and animal fats. Put aside the health issues, the fats selected must have high fat content!
Icy cold water – It is very important to have ice-cold water to incorporate air into the dough. When it is ice-cold, butter will not melt that soon and therefore, it is less likely to have a sticky dough.
Icing sugar – It must be icing sugar as the sugar must be extremely fine so that you don’t have any sugars that are not dissolved in the pastry due to the special handling of this dough.
SHAPING OF JAMS
When shaping the balls, you may find it extremely sticky. Pat your hands with some clean water. the balls that you made will become very smooth. If you have excessive water in your hands, your balls will become very slippery and it will drop.
Get ready a plastic container, arranged it nicely layer by layer. In between the layer, add a piece of plastic sheet to separate the balls. This step is also deemed to be a must if you are following my methods later.
Once you have shaped all the jams, stored in the freezer for 3-4 hours. Don’t worry if your jam looks like an iron ball, that is ideal if you can constantly keep it in that way. Well this is a rather controversial step.
This step is preferably done the day before. Even not, should be at least 3-4 hours before. Unless you are an expert, you can wrap with immediately shaped balls, otherwise, 3-4 hours preparation, in my humble opinion is a must. You will know the reasons why very soon.
PREPARING THE DOUGHS…..
The harder it is, the easier for you to wrap. If you know how to handle this type of soft dough, you can wrap directly. However, for my wrapping method to be shared below, it is advisable for you to cool your dough until the butter start to solidify a bit.
If you are making a big batch of pineapple tarts, to save your electricity and effort, you can make the dough all at once at keeping it in the fridge. It can keep for a long period of time (at least more than a week) provided you only take the portion that you want for that session and keep all the rest in the fridge until you need it for the next session.
WRAPPING THE DOUGHS AND ….
Here is the fun and controversial part.
I will show you the traditional way of wrapping and then show you my own way of wrapping to increase your productivities.
My unique way of wrapping was discovered by me during one of the nights just before Chinese New Year when I have to rush out the orders for my customers. The time is already very late, almost 11:00 pm. Nobody is helping me as my wife and my kids have to sleep early as they have to attend the school next day. I have to make at least 2 kg jam equivalent of pineapple tarts (about 240 pineapple tarts). I am tired as nobody was helping me, I suddenly felt the urge to discontinue the making of the tarts. I threw all the balls into the dough, walked to the balcony and take a rest. After 15 minutes when I cooled down, I tried to salvage the situation and that I discovered this method was the best method so far. Subsequent testing confirmed that this was the easiest and with the thinnest dough. However, there are a few requisites that you must follow strictly as what I have described above and subsequently.
You can use this method but since the objective is to have a mouthful pineapple tart. The pastry must be light and melt in your mouth. The flattening of dough may result in over handling of dough that yields harder crust eventually.
This is a very important step, the harder the balls, the better it is for you to shape. The cold temperature of the balls will help to make the butter in the dough in solid form and resulting in light pastry crust.
As long as the dough covers the balls, you can start shaping it. Hard balls made your shaping very easy and give your final pineapple tarts an identical shape.
You need to time to make the tarts and at the same time, your balls will start to defrost. Therefore it is a must that you put it back into the freezer for it to get hard again. Rubbing the balls against the dough is very fast and quickly enclosed your jam balls.
15 minutes after baking, take out the tray and have the second egg wash. By now, your tarts will start to take shape and firmer, so you can apply the egg wash more liberally. But care still have to be taken because it is “melt in your mouth”, when it is hot, it is still very “fragile”. so handle with care!!
Pineapple tarts prepared on January 2014
Hope you like the post and have a nice day. Cheers
UPDATED ON 9 JANUARY 2014 WITH INCLUSION OF VEGETARIAN PINEAPPLE TARTS
Every year I have to prepare two types of pineapple tarts: normal pineapple tarts and vegetarian pineapple tarts. Vegetarian pineapple tarts means that there are NO EGGS, NO BUTTER AND NO MILK. Therefore, it is acceptable for vegetarian by religion – particularly Buddhism.
Eggs have the ability to provide fragrance and binding effect of the tarts. These are substitute by corn flour. For egg wash purposes, honey is used instead of egg yolks. Of course the results will be less shinny like those egg washed by egg yolks. As for butter, it is substituted with margarine or other vegetable fats. In this recipe, it was 50% of margarine and 50% of olive oil bread spread. The end products will have some fragrance of olive oil. No detail illustration will be provided except the recipe. It is nice and slightly crispier than traditional pineapple tarts minus the butter aroma. It is definitely acceptable to me when I am on a vegetarian diet.
VEGETARIAN PINEAPPLE TARTS RECIPES
- 1 kg of pineapple jam.（凤梨酱）
It is hoped that with this recipe, more people will be able to enjoy the South East Asian famous pineapple tarts. If you are on a gluten free diet, you can try to substitute the plain flour with gluten free flour