|Happy Valentine's Day|
(adapted from 101 Brilliant Baking Ideas)
As we weathered our second snowstorm in the space of four days here in New England—no, let me be specific: my particular county in Massachusetts, which seems to have gotten more snow than any other county in the state—I felt a craving for cookies. Baking is warm; sugar+butter is good. So I baked.
Now you know we at MLK make cookies (and desserts) quite often, and sometimes it’s hard to find a “new” (to us) cookie recipe, but I was prepared with two cookbooks that I brought back from Dublin last year, from a small bookshop near Trinity College. The recipe here is also akin to my last recipe, for Singin’ Hinnies, because there are many British books that mention jam tarts in passing. But I’d never made them, or seen a recipe. So here they are!
2-1/4 cups flour
1 Tblsp confectioner’s sugar
2 egg yolks
2 Tblsp ice water (have more on hand if needed)
Jam (your choice!)
Add the egg yolks and ice water and pulse again until the mixture begins to hold together.
Gather the dough into a ball, and flatten it into a disk. Cover with plastic wrap, then chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Roll out the pastry on a floured surface and cut out circles with a 2” cookie cutter. [An aside: your baking tins may vary in size. Your cookie cutter should be about the same diameter as the widest part of the tin. You’ll find out quickly how it works.] Fluted edges are pretty but not necessary.
Put the circles in mini tart tins and press into place. [Another aside: don’t try to make them fit exactly. All you really need to do is press down on the middle to make a nice hollow for what’s coming next. I used the rounded end of an ice cream scoop, which doesn’t tear the dough.]
Fill each one with a about a teaspoon of jam (use your favorite variety, or mix and match—I went with a jar of black currant jam that I brought back from Ireland). Do not heap the jam, or it will overflow and stick to the pan and make a mess. [This I know from experience!]
Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the edges of the pastry are crisp and golden.
Let cool in the pan for a few minutes, then finish cooling on a rack. (Watch out: the jam just out of the oven can be really hot!).
You will find there is a learning curve to making these. I produced a bunch which were less than picture-perfect before I arrived at a tidy plateful. I ate the evidence.