Bologna to Bolognese: Adventures With Food

Food is necessary. Food is fun. Food is an adventure!

My name is Shannon and this is my adventure, my love affair with food.

I hope you'll come along for the ride.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Tiny Tasty Tarts

Sometimes it's not all about the flash, some foods just have that WOW factor naturally. Take tarts for example. Even the name tart makes me think of something sinfully delightful and just a bit dangerous. The best part about the tarts I'm going to share with you today is their incredible simplicity.

A while back I purchased some frozen puff pastry sheets for a work do and ended up not using them. So of course every time I opened the freezer the box of pastry sat there taunting me. Finally I had a stroke of inspiration, when trying to come up with a last minute birthday treat for a co-worker, and decided to make little fruit tarts with the pastry.

As I was working on a deadline I skipped personal innovation and went to the manufacturer's website where they have dozens of recipes and ideas. The following is my, only slightly, adapted version of their recipe for "Jeweled Fruit & Cream Tarts".

Mixed Berry Tarts 

All-purpose flour
1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed according to package directions
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 package (4 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sliced fresh berries (I used Strawberries and Blackberries)
1/2 c peach freezer jam

Heat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a muffin pan.

Sprinkle the work surface with the flour. Unfold the pastry on the floured surface. Roll the pastry into a 12 x 12-inch square. With a pastry cutter, cut 12 circles, each 4 inches in diameter. Press the pastry into the greased muffin cups. Prick the center of the pastry with a fork.

Stir the cream cheese and sugar in a small bowl until the mixture is smooth. Spoon the cream cheese mixture into pastry cups evenly. Top with 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of fruit (or until cup is full), and drizzle with the preserves. Bake for 15 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. Top with a fresh berry for garnish if you choose.

These were delightful. I wanted to bake mine because my blackberries were a bit tart and I wanted to coax a bit more sweetness from them. I do think I will follow the original recipe next time though and you can find it here at the Pepperidge Farm puff pastry website. It's a great product, really convenient to keep on hand and they have tons of great ideas on their website, so have fun and don't be afraid to experiment!

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