31 May 2008

Mini Pies = Pielets

Mini tarts are called tartlets, so mini pies must be called pielets right? And passionfruit meringue pielets these shall be.

So, I promised a fancier way to serve the passionfruit curd (I know it took a little too long!) and while you actually can just have it on your toast (which is still very good, btw), I think sometimes it doesn't hurt to make a little more effort to impress people a little. By fancy, I really didn't mean difficult. Just needing a little more time.

These meringue pielets are fairly easy to put together. The tart base is very easy and quick to do, but so good! Fragrant with a nice buttery, flaky crumb, I think it will work well with many sweet tarts. I used Fanny's recipe for the tart base and followed it word for word. I didn't the need to change it. I've since used it twice and my favourite part about it, no shrinkage when baking! All-in-all, it takes about another 1 or 2 hours to assemble the pielets including the time needed to chill and the tart dough. The full recipe for tart base makes about 11 3" tartlets (weird number, I know). The following recipe makes 4 pielets so it will use 1/3 of the tart dough recipe. Or you can simply bake up all the tart bases and store in an airtight box for future use!

Passionfruit Meringue Pielets

Tart Dough
250g plain flour
25g sugar
Pinch of salt
125g butter, chilled and diced
1 egg yolk
40ml ice cold water

Filling and Meringue
4 heaping tbsp passionfruit curd (find recipe here)
1 egg white (I used the one left from making the pastry)
40g sugar

- Sift flour, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl.
- Using only your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse oatmeal. When incorporating the butter into the flour, lift up your hand slightly and let the flour fall back into the bowl.
- Mix the egg yolk and cold water together in a small bowl and pour over the flour mixture.
- Knead gently until the dough comes together into a ball. Work the dough as little as possible so that it will remain light and flaky when baked.
- Wrap in cling wrap or a plastic bag and chill for 30mins or until ready to use. You may want to divide the dough into 3 parts before wrapping so that you can take out only what you need when baking.
- Preheat oven to 180 degC. Lightly butter and flour 4 3" tart moulds.
- Roll out 1/3 of the tart dough to about 1/8" - 1/4" thick between the clingwrap or plastic bag or on a lightly floured surface. You may find that you need a bit more tart dough depending on how thick you roll out the dough.
- Drape the tart dough over the moulds and press into the edges. I find it easier to try to fit it into the bottom first before letting the dough drape over the sides.
- Trim the excess dough from the rim and prick the base with a fork. Chill again for 20mins.
- Bake the tart bases blind for 25mins until golden brown. When baked, let cool before filling with passionfruit curd. Increase oven temperature to 200 degC.
- While the tart shells are cooling, whip the egg white until soft peaks form and slowly add in the sugar while whipping until stiff.
- Fill the cooled tart bases with 1 heaping tbsp of passionfruit curd each and top with the meringue, spreading it out to cover the passionfruit curd and piling up high in the center. Create whiplash peaks using a knife. Alternatively, you might want to pipe the meringue and making decorative swirls or using patterned nozzles.
- Bake 8-10mins or until the meringue browns slightly. You can use a blow torch too.

I know most people don't keep meringue pies, but if you happen to have leftovers, or they cool before you have a chance to eat them, pop them into the oven or toaster to warm up again before serving. I find that they taste better warm because the crust is more crisp, rather than hard.

1 comment:

Venus ~ Vi said...

Hi there~

These pielets look scrumptious and the passionfruit curd is to die for!