Tuesday, January 17, 2017

CNY Cookies - Pineapple Tarts

How not to bake Chinese New Year Cookies to usher the Chinese New Year?  I am glad that my higher cert program just ended in time for me to do some baking for Chinese New Year.  The flip side is I don't have a break as immediate after the course, I rushed into the Chinese New Year Cookies baking spree.

In view of the early reunion lunch with my in-laws' family on Jan 15 , I decided to kick start the baking with pineapple tarts as I wanted to give them this cookie when we met up. Pineapple tart is the most favorite cookie by the majority of the Singaporean.  It's a must item during the Chinese New Year. 

This year, I targeted to bake 3 packs of pineapple jam.  It's 50% more than what I did in the past.  I baked two variations of recipes, one was adopted from Sonia of  Nasi Lemak Lover (which use condense milk), another was my old recipe  (I use milk powder).  The aim was to compare two recipes and determine whether I should continue using my recipe moving forward.

Frankly speaking, I still prefer my recipe as  I think it's more fragrant and buttery. I've the same feedback from my family and siblings.   Anyway, taste is very individual.  What taste good to me may not taste good to you.  Hence, you don't need to take my word.

If you would like to give my recipe a try, here you go.. 

Pineapple Tarts Recipe

- Preheat fan oven at 175*C for 15 mins. Baking Time: 21-23 mins. Makes about 70 pcs.

- 300g butter (cold and firm)
- 2 big egg yolks       
- ¼ vanilla essence

- 400g plain flour   } sift
-  12g milk powder }
- 1 Tbsp icing sugar }

- 700g pineapple jam
- 1 egg yolk + 2 drops of cooking oil and water} for egg wash

1. Cream butter till pale (about 3 mins), add in egg yolks with vanilla essence one at a time and mix till combine.  (don't over beat)
2. Sift the flours, milk powder and icing sugar together, add into step 1.  Gently mix them together by hand. Use finger to stir and scrap aside the flour to butter batter till even distributed. Kneed for a few minutes to form dough.  Chill for at least 30 mins.
3. Weigh 10g pineapple jam, roll into a ball. Repeat the same step till finish the jam. Put aside.
4. Remove dough (step 2) from fridge, portion them into 10g each.  Roll into ball, make an indent, wrap with pineapple jam ball from step 3, roll into a round shape and make some design using cookie cutter or scraper, etc 
and then place it on a baking tray lined with baking paper.  Chill for another 30 mins.
5. Remove from fridge, egg wash tart.  Bake at 175*C (top bottom heat) for 10 mins and then lower to 170*C for another 10-12 mins  till lightly golden. (inner temperature is about 170-165*C)
6. Allow tarts to cool on wire rack before storing .

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