Pastry week! So, fun fact – this is the first time I’ve ever made pastry. I wasn’t a big fan of pie growing up and so as I started baking it was never on my list of things to bake. So we’re what? Seven years into me baking regularly and this is my first pastry. Should be a fun challenge!
First things first, this is Mary Berry’s recipe. Naturally. I do not own a big tart tin, because like I said, I don’t make pastry so I’m not well supplied. I do, however, own 5 little tart tins (there used to be 6 but oops, I threw out one of the bottoms). So, I figured making little tarts would be fine.
First up, the pastry. Again using my handy kitchen scale I measured out the ingredients:
175g All Purpose Flour
100g cold, cubed butter (just under 1 stick)
25g powdered sugar
1 large egg yolk
1-2 tbsp cold water
First the flour and butter went into a food processor and pulsed until it looked like coarse bread crumbs. Then in went the powdered sugar and egg yolk. I blended that until just combined and SLOWLY poured in water until a ball formed.
Next I had to roll it. Flouring the table, I split the dough into 2 just in case I messed the first one up some how and rolled that out. I was really nicely surprised that I managed to get all 5 of my tins lined and didn’t ruin any dough
So then, they got chucked right into the fridge and I went and did some boring things like clean the kitchen.
I know this is shocking, but I also have no baking beans, so I just used black beans and garbanzo beans for my blind bake
That should work fine right?
In for 10 minutes, beans and foil came out, in for another 15. Sounds about right?
Turns out 10 minutes is not a long enough initial blind bake. Which I learned when I took these babies out of the oven and saw bubbles EVERYWHERE
Seriously, look at that one in the bottom right. Giant bubbles. Hilarious. I knew first time pastry couldn’t go right to plan. But whatever, gotta keep on keeping on. So I set bubble tarts aside to cool and whisked together the filling:
5 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream
225g granulated sugar
4 lemons (juice and zest)
The directions were: whisk the eggs, then add everything else and whisk. So I did that but for some reason my filling was quite bubbly:
But again, I thought “maybe that’s just how it is?” and so I went with it and filled my bubble tarts and baked for about 20 minutes (with a large tin you want to bake longer, about 30 minutes).
And out of the oven they came!
They turned out alright I think. I mean other than the pastry dough bubbles popping up through the filling. There were no soggy bottoms, the filling tasted creamy and sharp and the whole thing was tasty!
Did they look good?
Nah, the pastry’s bubbling in the center, the filling has white flecks throughout (it didn’t alter the flavor or texture though) and the edges were not cut properly.
These things are a bit ugly. But for a first pastry experience I’m really happy with how they turned out. The pastry is flaky and buttery and delicious and the filling is smooth and sharp. Tommy and I ate them right up.
What was difficult:
- Actually working with the pastry – cutting it even along the edges, knowing how long the blind bake was, etc.
- Knowing what the filling should look like before pouring it into the tin. Were the bubbles totally wrong? Who knows.
What I learned:
- How to actually make a pastry! And that I like pastries and lemon tarts! Who even knew.
- Getting pastry out of tart tins is not easy when you accidentally spill over filling. It creates a bit of a glue and makes getting the tart out prettttty terrifying.
Would I make this again?
- Yes! And I’m excited to make them again for this challenge! I think these tarts are on the list again, so I’m excited to see how I improve on them next time.