“When I’m in Canada, I feel like this is what the world should be like.”
Boozy Butter Tarts So Canadian They’re Almost a Cliché.
The holidays and any attempt at minimalism do not pair well. This time of year does after all represent the height of excess; gifts, food, wine, desserts. And while we of course want and hope to strike the perfect balance between enjoying the holidays and not losing our minds or our indeed our wallets over the season, it’s not always easy determining in which area we should place our calories… errrr, I mean energies.
My daughter Jessica and I basically want to start baking the moment American Thanksgiving passes and not stop until the 24th of December. The problem with this is that we would also very much like to maintain a certain level of health and fitness through the season. So choosing carefully which treats we make is the key. And sadly no, planning to make them and give them away is NOT a sure fire way to avoid actually eating them!
But since we know baking will occur these Boozy Butter Tarts are a great place to start and while not specifically a Christmas treat, they are sufficiently decadent to pass the “Excessive Holiday Calorie Test” (I totally just made that up, but it’s now a thing for me!)
Butter tarts are not only a true Canadian classic but also about the simplest thing you can whip up. The key in my mind is striking the correct balance between flaky pastry and sweet delicious-ness. They need not be huge, they are after all rather decadent and so only a few bites are truly necessary. And if only a few bites seems stingy, well they’re small enough that enjoying a few won’t make you feel terribly guilty… probably.
This recipe like many here on Be Still & Eat is a compilation of the best of all worlds. I seek out and incorporate the technique and ingredient list of several recipes when I’m working on an idea to hopefully accomplish three things; easy preparation, simple ingredients, and a simply delicious outcome.
One of the recipes suggested starting the tarts in the oven at 200° for the first 15 minutes in order that they should not boil over. Which I actually thought was a pretty clever idea, however an anemic looking crust and a perfectly contained interior was not remotely what I had hoped for. What I was looking for was a crust coated in the sweet lava of burbling butter tarts.
And with that in thought in mind, I leave you with my recipe for a perfect Canadian treat which you can put to your own “Excessive Holiday Calorie Test”
In lieu of a wine pairing today I think simply a suggestion that one of these gorgeous little devils be enjoyed with a wee dram of your favourite whisky.
Enjoy & Namaste!
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 1.5 TBSP white vinegar
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 teaspoons vanilla
- scant ¼ cup Canadian Rye Whiskey
- ¼ cup raisins - optional but HIGHLY recommended
- ½ recipe (2 discs) Perfect Pastry
- Bring butter out of
fridgeso that it will come to room temperature.
- Soak raisins in booze. Overnight is not necessary but since it only takes two seconds to organize I do recommend it!
- Prepare recipe for Perfect Pastry and bring two of the discs out to warm slightly prior to rolling. I use round pastry cutters but a glass with the right sized rim works perfectly well. I like the pastry to not quite reach the top of the muffin tin.
- Line tart tins with pastry.
- Sprinkle 6-8 drained boozy raisins into each tart shell. The raisins should have soaked up much of the whisky, but feel free to soak them overnight if you want to be certain!
- When butter is soft add the remaining ingredients and stir until smooth.
- Spoon filling into unbaked tart shells, filling about ⅔ full.
- Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, raise temp to 375°F for a further 10. If the tarts aren't quite burbling and golden brown yet, pop the temp up to 400° for a further 5 minutes.
- Remove to
rackand allow to cool.
- Hide the one you like the look of the most 'cuz they're not gonna last long!