Sunday, May 10, 2009

Challenge Book #38 - Passionfruit Curd Tartlets

When I was growing up our backyard was a mini orchard. We had a mandarine tree which produced so much sweet juicy fruit that branches used to snap clean off under the weight. We gorged on mandarines and litres of juice for months. Our ladyfinger banana plants regularly produced huge bunches of bananas, followed by weeks of banana on cereal for breakfast, banana sandwiches for lunch and a rotation of banana fritters, banana custard and banana splits for dessert.

In between that we coped with the output from our lemon tree, mango tree, paw paw trees, the neighbours mulberry bush, the strawberry patch and our passionfruit vine. Or rather I should say that I coped with the passionfruit vine. I happen to absolutely love them while the rest of my family verge from hate to they're alright.

And despite my overexposure, I still love their zesty perfumed flavour. I will jump at anything passionfruit flavoured on a menu or bakery shelf.

The problem is that my river of free passionfruit is long gone - passionfruit not being too enthusiastic about cold and frosty winters and all. Now, more often than not, I have to pay something like 50c to $1 just for one. Oh the humanity!!!! So when I got my hot little hands on a large non-contra bag full for nothing, free, zilch, I was over the moon.

After some careful consideration, I decided to make a batch of passionfruit curd and turn half of it into the delectable tartlets you see before you. Making tarts is always quite involved. I am not an enthusiastic pastry maker, but I am always glad I did once the effort is over and done with. Especially when it turns out this well. It was very light and tender with an almost shortbread flavour. YUM!

The filling was just as good. It was delightfully creamy and smooth. Although next time I may cut down a little bit on the cream to up the zesty flavour. The original recipe tops the tarts with fresh bluberries glazed in raspberry jam. No thanks. I wanted my passionfruit pure and unsullied.

This recipe came from Women's Weekly Christmas Cooking which is challenge Book #38 in the KJ wants a Kitchen Aid Challenge (which is by the way where I have to cook something from every cookbook I own before I buy any more). I bought this book about five years ago. The only other thing I have made from it are the stained glass biscuits you see on the cover. The centres are made from melted lollies. I gave them away as little Christmas presents and they were a huge hit. They looked spectacular and tasted good.

Passionfruit Curd Tartlets
(adapted from Women's Weekly Christmas Cooking)

4 egg yolks
1/2 cup caster sugar
80gm butter
1 cup passionfruit pulp
1 tspn gelatine
2 tbspn boiling water
1/2 cup cream

Pastry Shells
1 2/3 cup plain flour
1/2 cup caster sugar
140gm cold butter, chopped
1 egg, beaten lightly
2 tspn iced water, approx.

Shells - Process together the flour, sugar and butter until crumbly. Add the egg and enough water to make the ingredients come together. Knead lightly and enclose in plastic wrap. Leave in the fridge for at least an hour, or overnight if possible.

Divide the dough into 8 portions and roll out to fit greased 10cm round loose base flan tins. Lift the dough into the tins and trim the edges. Prick the base of the pastry, line with greaseproof paper and fill with pastry weights, beans or rice. Place on a baking tray and bake in a 180C oven for about 7 minutes or until lightly browned. Carefully remove paper and weights and leave to cool.

Filling - Combine egg yolks, sugar, butter and 1/3 cup of passionfruit pulp in a double boiler. Simmer and stir until the mix is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain and discard the seeds.

Sprinkle gelatine over the water and stir until it is dissolved. Stir into the still warm curd, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Beat the cream to soft peaks. Fold into the curd mixture and divide amongst the shells. Leave for two or three hours until the filling is set.

Serve with a small dollop of cream or a few fresh berries.



At 10:21 pm, Blogger Amanda at Little Foodies said...

I would love it if we could go outside and pick all that fruit. What a great thing to have done growing up. Ironic that you have to pay so much for passionfruit now. Sounds like the pastry turned out perfectly.

At 10:34 pm, Blogger julie said...

This looks very nice. What a dream backyard you had as a child!

At 11:29 pm, Blogger Catastrophe Waitress said...

i have that same love of passionfruit with it's wonderfully tangy, zesty interior. those tarts look fabulous!

At 1:38 am, Blogger David T. Macknet said...

The only problem with passionfruit is that they look like sea-urchin roe!

At 2:28 pm, Blogger Deborah said...

These are gorgeous! And I'm so jealous of the "orchard" you had growing up!

At 12:28 am, Blogger grace said...

yeah, i wouldn't mind a few fruit trees in my yard. actually, i guess i first need a yard, period. :)
awesome little tarts, kj. they're stunning.

At 10:52 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those tarts looks delicious, hope I could make one... today, thanks for the guide!

At 3:20 am, Blogger Angela said...

Those look really good. I've never tried passionfruit before - I'll definitely have to try is some time.

At 10:34 pm, Blogger Patricia Scarpin said...

These are wonderful! I have been thinking of making passion fruit curd for ages. Great recipe, KJ!

At 5:05 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

KJ, your blog is wonderfully beautiful!!! I have come here through a friend (Patricia from Technicolor Kitchen) and can not stop reading!!! I want to try all your recipes and loved your challenge for a Kitchen Aid...You´re brave!!!
This post is amazing and these tartlets are something else!!! Here in Brazil we pay around US$1,50 for a kilo of passion fruit. I will so try this!!!
Thanks and will be visiting soon!

At 9:44 pm, Blogger KJ said...

Thanks for your lovely comments everyone.

And thank you Verena for visiting my blog. I am so glad you like it!

At 5:01 am, Anonymous Rumela said...

I like this passionfruit curd tartlets recipe. these tartlets are sure to taste great and are extremely nutritious as well. I am going to make it for the holidays when my kids will be at home. I'll be sure that what they are eating is healthy. thank you for shearing your post.


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