Wednesday, April 29, 2009

lavender tarts

This is an adaptation of a very old family recipe for tarts that are called either egg tarts or vinegar tarts, depending on whom you talk to. Originally it was meant as a faux lemon tart recipe, as it came out of Nova Scotia back in the day when lemons weren't readily available.

You will need 24 small tart shells, or 12 large (muffin-sized) ones.

Filling (original recipe)

3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
splash vanilla essence

Mix sugar and eggs but do not overmix to frothiness. Add vinegar and vanilla and mix to combine. Pour into tart shells and bake at 375F until tops are nicely browned.

Filling (fancy lavender version)

3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp or so lavender flowers

Before you even make the pastry, place the vinegar and lavender flowers in a small saucepan over low heat. Don't let it boil. Leave it there until you need it.

Once the pastry is made and the tart shells are ready, mix as above, except pass the vinegar through a sieve to remove the lavender flowers before you measure 3 tbsp for the mixture. If you have a tiny bit extra (it's hard to say how much the flowers will absorb) you can toss it in. If you have less than 3 tbsp, just add regular apple cider vinegar as needed.

Sprinkle the tops with a few dry lavender flowers before you put the tarts in the oven, and bake as above.


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