Thursday, February 20, 2014

Shortbread Tarts with Berries & Cream

My husband has been requesting that I make my shortbread tarts with berries and cream for a long time, well not consistently requesting but now and then he'll say, "do you remember those cookies with the lemon cream and berries? Maybe you can make those sometime soon." The reason I haven't made them, they are extremely fussy, but they are very good. However, he hadn't mentioned the tarts in a long time, but my cousin mentioned that she made chocolate chip shortbread cookies and I thought, I'll surprise him when he gets home from work with the ones he likes. For my cousin's cookies, she posted the picture and recipe to her Pinterest page, I will eventually try those too.

*As a side note - I can't keep a surprise, I give Christmas gifts early, I give all gifts early if I can. I get too excited and want the person receiving the surprise or gift to know as soon as possible. So I told my husband that I made them well before he walked through the door.

I made my lemon cream filling first and completely forgot to take pictures of the process. But the filling is very easy…cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest to balance everything out.

To start the shortbread tarts, cream butter and powdered sugar together in a mixer.

Then beat in vanilla. I love the smell of vanilla and for some reason I tend to smile when I add this ingredient, it's warming.

In a separate bowl combine flour, cornstarch, and a little bit of salt.

Mix until just combined, making sure not to over do it. It's going to be sticky.

Okay here's the first fussy part. The mix is sticky and it's a mini muffin pan. Place teaspoon size amounts into the pan and press the dough up the sides with an indent in the center. It can be a little frustrating.

Once you are satisfied with the way they look, place the pan in the fridge for 10 minutes.

Bake for about 18 minutes, but halfway through the baking process, prick the middle so they don't puff up. Check again in 5 minutes, prick if needed.


Let the tarts cool before removing from pan.

I decided to use blackberries and strawberries for the top.

A little advice - don't use strawberries. The blackberries work so much better with the lemon.

Shortbread Tarts with Berries & Cream
(makes 30 tarts)

Tart Ingredients
1 c. butter, room temperature
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla
1 1/2 c. flour
1 T. cornstarch
1/8 tsp. salt

To Make
Cream butter and sugar in mixer (approx 2 min.). Beat in vanilla. Add flour, cornstarch, and salt. Mix just until incorporated. Divide dough and place in greased mini muffin pans. Press dough up sides, indent in the center. Place plan in fridge for 10 minutes. Bake at 325 degrees for 18 - 20 minutes (lightly brown). Halfway through baking time prick with a fork. Check in 5 minutes, prick if the tarts have puffed up. Place on wire rack to cool.

Filling Ingredients
8 oz. cream cheese, soft
14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
1/3 c. lemon juice (fresh)
lemon zest from one lemon
1 tsp. vanilla

To Make
In mixer beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add condensed milk, lemon juice, zest, and vanilla until smooth. Refrigerate until serving time.

Fill tarts and top with berries.

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