Recipes that are delicious and that always work!

You know these recipes are delicious because if I didn't think that they were fabulous . . . I wouldn't be showing them to you. You can also be sure that these recipes work for the same reason! The rest is simply a matter of taste.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

White Chocolate Glazed Jewel Tarts

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I love the holidays.  I miss having Thanksgiving over here in the UK.  It seems to me like the perfect start to the holiday season . . . but alas . . . we don't even really seem to celebrate St George's Day which is kind of odd really, seeing as he is the Patron Saint of England.  Oh well as they say up North . . . "There's naught so queer as folk!"

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Of course the things I love most about the holidays are having friends and family around and the special food that we get to eat.   We do go all out don't we?   I love it.   I am not opposed to taking a few short cuts if I can however.

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I like dessert to be something light and not too filling.  After a heavy meal, a heavy dessert seems to be just too much.  That's why I created these delicious little tarts which although not large in size, are just enough to end a celebratory meal in the perfect way.

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Little airy indulgences that aren't going to lay heavily on your stomach.   Sweet enough to let you know you have had a bit of a treat without going over the top.   Composed of butter and flaky puff pastry.  ( I always buy the ready roll all butter, which works wonderfully and is ready at the drop of a hat.)  You make a kind of bejeweled jam to top these airy little bites.  Made from chopped dried apricots, dried cranberries, cointreau liqueur and cinnamon, it goes perfectly with that crisp and buttery base.

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Topped with flaked almonds and baked until crisp and then drizzled with melted white chocolate, these are the perfect ending to a special meal.  You can top with clotted cream or whipped cream if you like.  Oh so good.  

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The filling does make a bit more than you can use in the tarts, but it's also handy for other things, so be sure to check it out below.  In the meantime . . . here you are.  Indulge yourself.

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*White Chocolate Glazed Jewel Tarts*
Makes 10 to 12 (4-inch) tarts  
Delightfully crisp little tarts with fruity flavours along with an underlying hint of spice and orange.   Topped with roasted almonds they bake up beautifully.  A final topping of white or dark chocolate drizzle makes these special. Perfect for bunch, holiday teas or a celebratory dessert table. 

For the filling:
250g of dried apricots, cut into small pieces
(1 cup firmly packed)
(I like to use Hungry Jack's Organic.  They have an almost toffee flavour)
75g of dried cranberries (1/2 cup)
3 TBS Cointreau liqueur
335ml of  boiling water (1 1/2 cups)
60ml of white wine (1/4 cup)
85g of white sugar (1/2 cup)
100g of soft light brown muscovado sugar (1/2 cup)
1 cinnamon stick 

2 sheets of all butter ready rolled pastry
milk for brushing
170g of flaked toasted almonds (1 cup)
3 TBS demerara sugar (Turbinado)
ground cinnamon to dust
4 ounces of white belgian chocolate to finish
(Alternately you can use dark chocolate, or a mix of both) 

Put the apricot pieces and cranberries into a medium sized bowl.  Pour the boiling water over top, along with the white wine and cointreau.  Cover and set aside to soak for at leat 30 minutes or up to an hour.  Transfer to a saucepan and add the cinnamon stick, and both sugars.  Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture is thick and has a jam like consistency.  Set aside to cool.  Remove the cinnamon stick once cold. 

Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*F/ gas mark 7.  Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Unroll the pastry and using a 4 inch round cutter, cut out five or six rounds from the pastry.   Place on the baking sheet.   Take a smaller (3 inch) cutter and make a light indentation in the centre of the circle.  You will have a half inch rim around the outside of each.  Brush this with some milk and then sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.  Dust with cinnamon.  Place a heaping TBS of the apricot mixture into the centre of each pastry, spreading it lightly out to the sugar coated rim.  Don't be tempted to over fill as the mixture will spread upon baking.     Sprinkle the toasted almonds over top of each, dividing equally.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the filling is bubbly and the pastry is golden and crisp.   Remove from the oven and scoop off onto a wire rack immediately.  Allow to cool completely.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave for 20 to 30 second intervals until quite soft and melted.  Using a fork, drizzle the chocolate decoratively across the tarts.   Serve when cool, with or without some clotted or softly whipped cream.  

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I re-rolled the trimmings and made a tasty little plate of bite sized turnovers.  I just couldn't let any of it go to waste.

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You could also use the excess to create flaky larger sized turnovers. Oh so scrummy with a mid morning or afternoon cuppa.


  1. maybe you could start a small Tg tradition there?:) I know your guests would love that..

    These look great ..

  2. Ah Marie these look absolutely delicious and tempting lol
    hugs xoxoxoxo

  3. honestly - just scrumptious!
    Mary x

  4. I love Thanksgiving too......and I haven´t here:)

  5. They look so they smell wonderful.oooxxx

  6. These look yummy! Wish I had the patience to make such pretty pastries!


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