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When I was a child, it was a real treat when my mother made us jam tarts! It didn’t happen very often, to say the least. I don’t know why. They are not really very hard to make. She tended to only make them if she had leftover pastry . . .
And usually any leftover pastry went to make Petes de Soeur (um . . . Nun’s Farts) or weiner rolls. Weiner rolls were much more popular with my dad so they got made the most often. My mother would roll the scraps out thinly, spread them with mustard and wrap them around hotdogs before baking.
To be honest, we all loved them. So nobody was complaining. Not at all. They were like the ultimate hotdog. I have tried them with fancy mustards through the years, but really . . . old fashioned French’s American mustard is the best.
I found myself having quite a few small pots of Bonne Maman jam that needed using up. I had gotten them for Christmas, and so today I decided to use them to make us some jam tarts. I didn’t make really large ones. Just tiny bite sized ones.
I cut them out using the 2 inch flower cutter from my old Tupperware cookie cutter set. (I think I have had that for about 40 years or so!) I used my brioche bun tins to bake them in. They worked wonderfully.
My jams were Plum, Apricot, Cherry, and Strawberry. Four tiny pots did all 30 tarts. Believe it or not.
The thing you want to remember about jam and baking is this . . . hot jam expands! You don’t need an awful lot in each tart. About 1/2 tsp in each of my small tarts was perfectly ample.
I have learned the hard way through the years that hot jam on hot tins is no fun to clean up afterwards . . . and the tarts end up sticking to your pan. Better to have less jam and to be able to remove them without them breaking up.
These were lovey and to be honest, because they were so tiny, you didn’t feel really guilty scarfing down two or three of them . . .
Have I ever told you how much I love pastry?
And jam? Well I love both of those things immensely!
So I think you can tell that I really REALLY loved these!
Easy Jam Tarts
Yield: 30 small tarts
Author: Marie Rayner
This is one of Todd’s favourite treats. Crisp buttery pastry filled with dabs of sweet jam. You can do a rainbow of tarts if you have a few different types. Do NOT overfill the tarts. A little dab will do you!
For the pastry:
140g all purpose flour (1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 TBS butter
2 1/2 TBS lard
3 to 4 tablespoons of ice water
You will also need:
jam to fill them (I used apricot, cherry, plum and strawberry)
First make the pastry. Mix flour with salt, and cut in butter and lard, until you have pieces of fat in the flour about the size of peas. Add ice water, one TBS at a time, tossing it in with a fork until pastry comes together. Form in to a ball, flatten, wrap in cling film and chill in the refrigerator for about half an hour.
Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6. Have ready some tart tins. I sprayed mine with some canola cooking spray to keep anything from sticking. As I was using individual tins, I placed them onto a baking sheet.
Roll your pastry out, using a floured rolling pin, and on a lightly floured surface to 1/8 inch thickness. Using a 2 inch cutter (I used a flower shaped one) stamp our rounds and use them to line your tart tins. Gather up any scraps and repeat until all of your pastry is used.
Fill each tart with about 1/2 tsp of jam. Bake in the preheated oven for about 10 to 12 minutes, until crisp, golden and the jam is bubbling. Let cool in the tins for a few minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Enjoy with a hot cuppa. Store any leftovers in an airtight container.
I cooked us a fantastic roast chicken recipe today, so you might want to get yourself in a roasting chicken this weekend. I promise you won’t be sorry. It was the most delicious chicken we have eaten in a while! (And we eat chicken a lot!) Oh, and get a couple lemons and some fresh thyme also. Just a heads up!
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