24 January 2017

Open Faced Pineapple Tarts 黄梨挞

I didn't bake any CNY goodies last year as our whole family "escaped" for a holiday (避年) :p

This year I was contemplating not to bake again, since we are unlikely to have visitors and being lazy and all, but I kept seeing home bakers sharing their baked goodies in FB groups, Instagram etc, and it's so infectious my hands became itchy!

Decided to challenge pineapple tarts again since the hb likes it. In the past years that I baked pineapple tarts, I always made the closed type and this time when I checked with the hb what style he likes, he told me open faced type?! Wow, after knowing him for almost 20 years, now then I know huh!

Ok, open faced pineapple tarts it shall be.

Since it's my first time making open faced pineapple tarts, once again, lots of reading and research to find a recipe that suits me. As usual I refer to my fellow trusty blogger friends like Annielicious Food, Table For 2 or more, TravellingFoodies and a few other popular bloggers like Anncoo Journal, Bake for Happy Kids.

In the end, I referred to TravellingFoodie's recipes for both pineapple jam and Kueh Tair.

First thing first, the pineapple jam. I never buy pineapple jam because I'm not sure if I like the taste (whether too sweet) and texture. I know it's hard work cooking the jam but I just want every component homemade if I could do it.

In the past, I usually blend the pineapple flesh and the jam turned out to be fine and smooth texture. The picky hb said he prefers jam with more bite and texture, which essentially means more work for me lah, coz I have to chopped/hand-grate the pineapple flash.

I intended to make a very small quantity for home consumption, so bought only 2 pineapples, 1 normal and 1 thai honey. Yes, they were already skinned with "eye" removed. Well, slightly more expensive but I was already going to chop and hand grate the pineapples, didn't want to stress myself up more over a few cents.

In the end, I got only 338g of pineapple jam, after 15 mins of chopping and grating and 1 hr of cooking. I guess because of the small quantity, cooking took much shorter time *phew*. Cooked the jam on Saturday and chill it in the fridge.

As advised by Alan (TravellingFoodies) the jam looked a little wet here, so I cooked it for 5-8 mins more before shaping the pastry.

For the pastry, initially I tested a small portion of ingredients using another recipe where the proportion of butter is 80% to flour. Nearly wanna cry when trying to stamp and shape the tart dough because it was too buttery and soft to handle! Alan's recipe used about 60% (some other recipes used 50% or 70%) so it was much more manageable. Managed to prepare the dough on Sunday night and decided to chill it in fridge to make on Monday instead as I was too tired.

At first, I didn't get the workflow properly, and everything was a mess! Luckily managed to make it work in the end. Even though the dough was more manageable, it still turned soft quite quickly. So my personal take is (1) let the dough thaw about 6-8 mins from the fridge, it's easiest to stamp and unmould when still cold and firm (2) dust the moulds with corn starch so that it's easier to unmould the dough. (I have a cake tester on hand to pick out bits of dough that got stuck in the ridges when I didn't dust the moulds thoroughly enough.)

Based on advice from Alan, the dough scraps should only be gathered (don't knead) and re-use once. If keep on re-using the scraps, the tarts will turn out too hard. Yes, there's a lot of wastage involved. I haven't throw the scraps yet, they are still taking up space in my fridge as I felt it's a pity to throw them away. I think I may use them for egg tarts or cheese tarts or something.

This time, I used the full quantity from his recipe even though I know my jam was not enough. So I only re-used (once) about half the dough. Next time I make, I would probably adjust the pastry recipe to about 60-70% or increase the amount of jam.

Left - glazed and before baking. Right - baked.
And so this was my one and only tray of pineapple tarts, 28 small and 25 petite. Yes, all that work for just one tray?!

I think I have slightly over-baked the tarts, by probably 2-3 mins. Don't ask. But still looked ok right?

So is all the work worth it? Yes, I would say, it's rewarding and satisfying to see the labour of love came to fruition =D

Open Faced Pineapple Tarts
(makes 28 small-size tarts 3.5cm mould, 25 petite-size tarts 2.5cm mould)
(reference from TravellingFoodies)

Pineapple Jam (yields 338g)
  • 900g pineapple flesh (1 normal 1 thai honey, nett weight after removing skin, eye, core)
  • 100g sugar
  • 2 small cinnamon sticks
Pastry (more than enough dough, recipe to be adjusted for this amount of jam)
  • 320g plain flour
  • 30g icing sugar
  • 200g salted butter
  • 2 egg yolks
  • Corn starch, for dusting
  • 1 egg yolk + 1 tsp water, for glazing
Pineapple Jam
  1. Finely chopped or hand grate the pineapple flesh. 
  2. Add the chopped pineapple flesh (with its juices), cinnamon and 2 tbsp of sugar into a large frying pan with big surface area.
  3. Bring the ingredients to a boil, then lower flame to medium. Stir the pineapple occasionally to cook evenly.
  4. When the pineapple liquids have been reduced considerably (it takes about 30 mins for this quantity of pineapple), add the remaining sugar. Continue stirring the pineapple till it dries up (it takes another 30 mins to reach this stage). 
  5. Let the cooked pineapple jam cool down completely before storing in an airtight container until ready to use (chill in fridge if not using the same day).
  6. The final pineapple jam should feel moist and sticky and not wet. If jam is too wet, cook it for a few mins before making the tarts.
  7. When ready to use, roll the jam into small balls of desired size. I use 3-4g balls for the petite tarts and 6-7g for the small tarts.
Tart pastry
  1.  Sift flour and icing sugar into a large mixing bowl and mix well.
  2. Add cold butter cubes and rub the butter into the mixture with pastry butter until it resembles coarse cookie crumb.
  3. Add the egg yolks and use a spatula to fold through the mixture and bring the dough together. Do not overwork the dough.
  4. Divide the dough into three or four portions. Place each portion in between 2 plastic sheets and roll the dough into a 5mm layer. Repeat for all the portions.
  5. Chill the dough layers for 1hr or overnight.
  6. When ready to use, work on 1 dough layer each time. If using overnight dough, let it thaw for 6-8 mins before using.
  7. Dust the pineapple tart mould with corn starch, stamp the dough, carefully remove the tart dough and place it on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. Repeat till quantity is sufficient for the pineapple jam.
  8. Brush each tart dough with egg yolk glaze, then place a ball of pineapple jam onto the tart dough, pressing down gently.
  9. Bake the tarts in preheated oven (top and bottom heat) at 170 degree celsius for 10 mins, rotate baking tray, and bake for another 10 mins. *if the colour of the tart is too pale, turn to fan mode and bake for another 2-3 mins (watch closely).
  10. Let the pineapple tarts cool down completely before storing into air-tight containers.

I love how they turned out. The tart pastry is crumbly and buttery and not too hard nor soft. The pineapple jam was not too sweet and the tartness just right for my tastebud, best of all there's still some fibrous bits.

The kiddo gave it 5/5! The hb whom I made the tarts for has yet to try it. He said it looks good. Hopefully it will pass his taste test!

I'm certainly keeping this recipe and likely to be adjusting the proportions for both jam and pastry accordingly. Till then!


  1. Hi there! I still follow your blog and am always blown away by your wonderful food, recipes and photography. Just thought I'd let you know that as I don't usually comment.

    Kind regards

    Di (UK, used to live in Singapore as a kid) xx

  2. Hi Di,
    Nice to hear from you again! Thanks for being around :)