Friday, 6 May 2011
I wonder who first ever thought that pineapples should be eaten? When you see them – prickly sides, thick skin, tall spiky stalk – they don’t seem like the most inviting fruit. But, once in, pineapples are worth it. Sunny yellow flesh, soft and extremely juicy and turning just a little bit sharp on your tongue if you eat too much at once. But before you happily eat the whole fruit, raw and fresh, these tarts are definitely worth a try. The tarts are super easy and straightforward with just three basic ingredients: pineapple, puff pastry, apricot jam and an egg (based on a Lindsay Bareham recipe from the Times). The longest part of the recipe was carving up the fresh pineapple as I am not experienced, but if it was a real rush I don’t see why canned pineapple could not be used. Once you have cut your puff pastry circles you just pile on your pineapple and bake – simple! After baking you glaze the tarts with the jam to seal them and make them glossy. The pineapple goes tender and soft in the oven whilst the pastry goes crisp and crunchy. Very moreish.They’re a great way of bring a little sunshine into a grey day, accompanied by some crème fraiche and straight out of the oven: delicious. I would make these again but I would also make a few changes, just to tweak the few issues we found. Next time, I would add a layer of something under the pineapple, such as marzipan in the galette (although that may be too sweet here) to create more substance and keep the pastry base crisp. Also, whilst the basic recipe is perfect for a super simple dessert, in the future I would precook or flavour the pineapple to add another aspect to the tarts. For example, a quick caramelise in some sugar in a hot pan would emphasise the sweetness of the pineapple whilst adding some new flavour/texture. With these changes, I doubt these tarts would last very long in my kitchen!