Strawberry tartlets are delicious, small, sweet and juicy, for dinner parties, afternoon teas and on picnics. These tarts are easy to make and all the ingredients can be prepared in advance but the final assembly of them is best left up to an hour in advance as the pastry can become moist.
1 1/2 c. flour
pinch of salt
1 tsp. sugar
4 tbsp. butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1 egg slightly beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 lb. fresh strawberries, stems removed
10 tsp. raspberry or strawberry preserves
whipped cream or nondairy topping chocolate shavings (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 325F. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and sugar.
2. Add butter to the flour mixture. With a fork or pastry blender, work the butter into the dry ingredients until small “pebbles” begin to form.
3.Add the egg and vanilla. When the dough begins to stick together, use your hands to shape it into two large balls. Wrap the balls in plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes.
4. Remove from the refrigerator. Roll dough out on a lightly floured surface with a rolling pin.
5. Place the miniature pie tins facedown on the dough. Using a paring knife, cut around the tins. Transfer the dough to the tins. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the crust is golden and cooked through.
6. Just before serving, spread 1 tsp. fruit preserves on the bottom of each tartlet. Top with 4 or 5 fresh strawberries and a dollop of whipped cream. Sprinkle with chocolate shavings.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Chilling time: 20 minutes Baking time: 10 to 15 minutes
*If you do not have miniature tart tins, look for mini tart crusts in the freezer section at the local grocery store. Bake as directed on the package.