The Lunar New Year is just around the corner! This festive is all about getting together with your family and friends, catching up over a scrumptious spread of Chinese delicacies. Well, and our favourite snack is pineapple tarts! This time we make our own one!
Cooking homemade jam is not difficult at all, just a bit laborious and time consuming.
However, I do think it is really worth the time as the store bought pineapple jam usually lacked pineapple flavour and are always sweetened with too much sugar. The fresh pineapples, on the other hand, smell heavenly and taste so delicious when made into jams.
6 pineapples (medium size) 3 ripe pineapples, 3 half-riped pineapples
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1-2 cinnamon sticks
4 star anise
1. Cut away the outer tough skin of pineapple in strips, from top to bottom, then continue to work around the pineapple to carefully remove the "eyes" of the fruit and next, slice the pineapple into long quarters.
2. To hand-grate the pineapples, place a strainer over a large plastic or ceramic bowl and place a grater in it and grate the pineapple using the largest holes on the box grater and discard the core. It is recommended to wear plastic gloves hand grating the pineapples. When finished grating, drained the grated pineapples in the strainer. Safe the pineapple juice in the plastic bowl for later use.
3. Place the grated pineapples in a large surface area pot as this can shorten the cooking time and reduce the risk of burning the jam. Add about 1/2 of the sugar first, the warm spices and lemon juice.Then stir the pineapple mixture with a wooden spoon to ensure everything is well mixed.
4. Using MEDIUM HIGH heat, bring the pot of pineapple mixture to a boil. Once it starts to boil, lower the heat to MEDIUM and stir occasionally the mixture to ensure it does not burn. Start adding the pineapple juice in batches until all the juice has boiled and evaporated and continue to cook the pineapple mixture till it starts to brown and dry.
5. Then, turn the heat to LOW and continue cooking until the mixture turns sticky. Add in the rest of the sugar and adjust the sweetness to your taste. Stir well until most liquid has evaporated and the pineapple jam turns golden brown in colour. Be sure to stir the mixture frequently especially towards the end of the cooking to avoid burning the jam. And we're done!
500 g all-purpose flour, sifted
350 g salted butter, cut into smaller cubes and kept chilled
50 g powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp baking powder
2 egg yolks, lighten beaten
3 tbsp fresh milk
1 egg, beaten and added with
1 tbsp water (for egg-wash)
1. Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. Set aside.
2. Add in the butter and rub into the dry mixture until mealy crumbs are formed
3. Add vanilla essence and 3 tbsp of cold milk into the egg yolks and pour egg mixture into the crumbs and knead quickly to combine the dough. The dough should be soft and slightly sticky and wrap it up using cling-wrap. Make sure it is airtight to prevent dough from drying out and then chill for at least ½ hour before use.
4. While dough is chilling, prepare your pineapple jam filling by making pineapple jam balls, each from a heaping teaspoonful.
5. After dough chilled, roll the dough into balls, about 10 gram for each dough ball and flatten the rolled dough ball. Then place a piece of the rolled pineapple jam filling in the middle. Bring the edges of the dough together and press lightly to seal. Next, roll it in between your palms to shape it into a ball.
6. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the egg yolk and water together for the glaze. Be sure to strain the egg wash through a sifter to remove any parts of the egg that didn't incorporate. Lightly brush the lattices using a pastry brush.
7. Bake in preheated oven of 180C for about 15-17 minutes, depending on the crispy-ness of the tart you desire. (i.e. bake longer for a harder, crispier, tart crust) or until
the pastry is a pale gold.
8. Cool on a wire tray, then store in an airtight container, using a piece of parchment or doily in between layers...