Friday, January 15, 2010

Pineapple Tarts...Two Ways

Posted by Quinn at Friday, January 15, 2010

This is a pain in the arse....I made 16 golden gems. It took me an hour or more, just rolling and shaping, 20mins to bake and 1 day to disappear.

My advice is do not ever attempt to make Nastar or pineapple roll if you don't have the right mould. I don't know what came to me. I thought I have a Nastar mould. I turned the kitchen upside down, searched high and low, icing tips flying everywhere and I cannot find the right mould.

Not only that, after baking, I couldn't find the wire rack, just so damn it!!! I recalled I've seen a chopsticks wire rack at HHB thus I quickly gather all the chopsticks I could find in the house. How was I glad the bottom of the tart did not turn soggy!

I improvise accordingly, Aaron took a step-by-step shot. But really, spend that 5 bucks and get a proper mould rather than being like me!

Pineapple tart is really not that hard. You just gotta get organized, have ready everything needed from before baking till after baking else you'll go head-wired like me! I've enclose here a very detail steps and recipe so bake some for Chinese New Year!

Generally, there are three types of pineapple tarts, the Nyonya Style which is what they call the open face tart. I didn't make this because I don't have the right mould and it is impossible to cheat with any other cookie cutter, just my opinion. Also because tarts made this way tend to have dry jam unless you spread it on halfway through baking. I like my pineapple jam moist, thank you. No store-bought jams anymore please...

Another type is the pineapple nastar or pineapple rolls, probably the most tedious among all but most good looking one too I would say!

One last one is the all wrapped in pineapple tart. Depending on how you stick in your cloves, some would call it tangerine style tart (below) and some would call it apple style tart. (above) This is good, moist filling and looks good too! Cloves don't come cheap in Australia, I'm stingy!

There is another type of tart, very much like tangerine style pineapple tart, where all filling is totally enclosed in pastry case. It is square and they usually call it Taiwanese Style Pineapple Tart. It has no cloves and is not a common sight during Chinese New Year and you need special square mould for that too. Let's get back to what I've done and more about CNY from now on!

Also, you can make the pastry two ways. You can either pulse them in food processor like how I make all my tarts or you can use the creaming method, typical of how you mix butter and sugar till light and fluffy then add in egg yolk and vanilla if desired and beat until combined again. Finally fold in the flour. Creaming method produces a melt-in-mouth tart whereas food processor or the rubbing in of butter method produces a crumbly tart. The rubbing-in method will also yield tart that holds its shape better. I sorta combined both ways and got a crumbly but also melt-in-the-mouth tarts. So, try mine!

Here comes the recipe and detail steps, you're so welcome!

Pineapple Tarts
(makes 16 tangerine style perfectly or 20++ Nastars but you'll need more jam accordingly)

One portion of Pineapple Jam, rolled into 16 balls


95g plain flour
2 tbsp milk powder
2 tsp custard powder
2 tbsp + 1 tsp cornflour
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp castor vanilla sugar
85g butter (I substituted 3 tbsp of this with pork lard, ultimate food orgasm!!!)
1 egg yolk, mixed with 1 tbsp of water

Glaze: 1 egg yolk + 1 tsp water

Combine together the first 6 ingredients in a food processor. Pulse a while until combined and fine. Chop in the butter and lard, if using. Lard addition yield a more crumbly tart. Pulse until butter is the size of green peas, if not smaller. Pour the butter-flour mixture onto a clean work surface. Make a well on the mound of flour and pour in the egg yolk-water mixture. Apply the Frissage Method, like once or twice. When it starts coming together, gather together everything and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for an hour. After an hour, remove it from the fridge. Knead it a little to bring it back to room temperature.

If you are making the tangerine style tart, use a 1/2-tablespoon capacity measuring spoon and form 1/2 tablespoon ball of dough. Roll into round and flatten it. Wrap in the pineapple jam ball and seal well. Place on a lined and greased tray. Glaze with egg yolk wash and stick in a clove. Stick it in with stalk protuding out if you want an apple-like tart and vice versa for tangerine-like tart. Just make sure you remove the little ball (formed due to unopened sepals, just fyi!) at the centre just to be perfect!

If you are making the nastar or pineapple rolls, do as below if you have no nastar mould:

Pipe one long strand of pastry onto a baking paper, taped to the table on both sides.

Pipe another two strands of pastry like above. That strand makes 3 nastars for me.

Take one pineapple jam filling and roll it between your palm until slightly oblongi-sh. Place it as above.

Use a spatula and gently lift up the pastry strands together like above.

Use your thumb and index finger to hold the filling and roll it upfront. The pastry will follow it and roll up the filling nicely, enclosing it snuggly.

Use the spatula and cut off the remaining pastry and repeat again until done. Pipe more accordingly.

Chill them for 10mins and glaze. They firm up a little and holds it shape better when you glaze and even after baking. When commercialized, they have a sorta spray glaze, I've seen how they do it. They place the glazing liquid in a sprayer mist and spray it on the tarts. They have large tray of tarts, and they place the tarts all close together.

Finally, bake them in a preheated oven of 170°C for 20 mins or until lightly brown. Cool them on the baking tray for 5 minutes and working quickly and gently, remove them to cool on a wire rack so they don't get soggy bottoms. Grab the nastars by the jam rather than the pastry because they're crumbly when warm. You might also want to make sure they are loosen up from the baking paper using a spatula.

Very addictive. All the best in loosing weight for those going on diet!


Pinkcocoa (Recipe Source)
Malaysia Best (Step-by-step Guide)
Little Teochew (the reason I made some because I couldn't resist her temptating photos)
Pineapple-Tarts (lots of good tip and idea)

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25 comments on "Pineapple Tarts...Two Ways"

Sonia (Nasi Lemak Lover) on January 15, 2010 at 8:35 PM said...

Wo, Thanks for sharing this long and detail post. I have yet to start making pineapple tarts. By the way, that type with clove, can you smell the clove while eating? I'm thinking to do this type, but my kids will not live the clove.

tracieMoo on January 15, 2010 at 10:37 PM said...

Owh how I just love the apple style pineapple tarts! they're just so adorable.. I wish I had time to make this.. I'm feeling so envious now.. rawr..
with custard powder.. now I can see why it melts in your mouth.. this is just so fab.. I'm so going to make this for cny..!! Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe, Quinn!

Quinn on January 16, 2010 at 12:05 AM said...

Sonia: You're very welcome! Yes you can smell them but not much of taste though. I like how they smell and flavor my tarts but I suppose kids just don't like them. Wrap in filling, shape them into rounds, then shape them into oblongish like pineapple shape. Use a sharp small knife to score the surface like how you would do to a polo bun so it look like pineapple, chill it to firm up a bit and glaze. Bake and done!

Tracie: You're so welcome. Make and share with me maybe at the gathering okay?

Dodol & Mochi on January 16, 2010 at 2:05 AM said...

Quinn, kudos to you & Aaron!! Now that's what I call teamwork! LOL!!

MG!! What happened to your kitchen!? You've already started on CNY bake-athon!!?? I'm so damn slow ... Arrgghhh ...

K, your tarts are already tempting me ... Will begin mine soon ... =) Thanks for inspiring me!


Anncoo on January 16, 2010 at 3:03 AM said...

I know it is really time consuming to make pineapple tarts. I remember I spent three and half hour to wrap and bake 100 pcs of this little tarts. My family can finished up all in two days.

ICook4Fun on January 16, 2010 at 10:21 AM said...

Look like you are all gear up for CNY. I think for this year I will just bake pineapple tarts since the my family love it.

Happy Homebaker on January 16, 2010 at 12:03 PM said...

Even without a proper mould your nastar tarts look just like those made from proper mould! I like your photos! especially the one with the nastar tarts balancing on the forks. How I wish I could take pictures as good as yours.

Quinn on January 16, 2010 at 6:42 PM said...

Pei-Lin: ???????

Anncoo: 100pcs using 3.5 hours is the speed of an expert!

Gertrude: I think I'll bake peanut cookies and pineapple tarts again because Aaron loves them!

HHB: Thanks! You take good pictures HHB, why underestimate your own capability!

Cuisine Paradise on January 16, 2010 at 11:16 PM said...

Wow Quinn, I was impressed with your assorted pineapple tarts. Every each of them is so nicely rolled and wrapped. Esp the "rolled tarts", i didn't know you nv use the proper mould till i read the whole post.... I must say you have done far way nicer...... :) Love all :p

Dodol & Mochi on January 16, 2010 at 11:52 PM said...

Ahh ... You've now reaffirmed the fact that I can be quite random, LOL!

1. Aaron took the role of photographer while you took the role of baker. Teamwork, eh?

2. It just surprised me when you really had no freaking clue where all the utensils were! LOL! That sound scary!

3. I've yet to begin my CNY bake-athon officially; hence, a slow poke. =D

I hope that's cleared the ??? ...

^^ Pei-Lin

zurin on January 17, 2010 at 4:51 PM said...

beautiful Quinn! creative yet again :))

pigpigscorner on January 17, 2010 at 9:13 PM said...

wow well done without a mould! Even with it it's a pain to make.

edith on January 18, 2010 at 11:56 AM said...

Quinn, give me your address.

Kitchen Corner on January 18, 2010 at 12:03 PM said...

You are so smart with the method of making this pineapple tart. That's really a good idea for those who don't have the mould. Well done! Good job!

Quinn on January 18, 2010 at 4:53 PM said...

Ellena: Awww....blush! blush! Thank you so so much. I really cannot find a nastar mould. Nope, I in fact don't own one! Gotta buy one on this trip back to Malaysia!

Pei Lin: Yes, very random! I thought you're replying to somebody else's comments. Didn't know MG and K actually means My God and oKay! Jeez.....hilarious! Now I get it! And yes, it's scary plus annoying. I have had so many encounters of not having enough ingredients and utensils halfway through making them but I never learn my lesson!!!

Zurin: Thank you Zu. Nah....not that creative, just making full use of what I have in hand :)

Ann: Yeah, no moulds.... Sob....Sob....I'll get one soon. It's really not that bad if you're making hundreds of them. But because I'm only making 16 and it took about the same amount of work and effort (don't talk about extra effort in shaping!) I really feel the pain!

Edith: Just shot you an email. Check it out!

Grace: I guess I really gotta improvise and get creative with what I have in hand. Thanks! Funny but only Pineapple Nastars appeal to me during CNY. I know the tangerine and open face tart are the same but I just always think and believe the nastar one taste better, more crumbly and melt-in-the-mouth. Maybe it's just me!

Ju (The Little Teochew) on January 19, 2010 at 2:26 AM said...

How on earth you made Nastar without a mould is beyond me. I should really stop whining about my own Nastar episode!! Bravo to you, my dear. They actually look unbelievably polished for a handmade, made-from-scratch version. And those tangerine ones are just too cute!

petite nyonya on January 19, 2010 at 2:29 AM said...

well done with the nastar, Quinn. they turned out swell despite you not having the actual mold.

Gattina on January 19, 2010 at 3:00 AM said...

I am in awe! It is GORGEOUS!!! sweetie, you should be a pastry chef!

Quinn on January 19, 2010 at 4:38 PM said...

Ju: Nah...I think your Nastar episode was way way beyond mine. I only made 16 pieces, now how bad can that be? I love the tangerine one too, they're very adorable, aren't they! Thanks!

Petite Nyonya: Thanks! I really didn't expect them to turn out rather-pretty I would say!

Gattina: Thanks! Wanted to study pastry chef but parents didn't allow, just so damn it for me being in engineering!

Anonymous said...

Hi Quinn, my batch of tarts would melt and loses its shape during baking. what went wrong?? Pls advise.. THANK YOU.

Quinn on January 23, 2010 at 10:32 PM said...


I gotta see what recipe you are using, what sorta shape of tart to be able to comment on why it melt and loses its shape. General answer, I'd say chill it first (I'm assuming it's open face tarts) and then glaze when it's firmed up a little. Then bake. Both the chilling and glazing will help your pattern to hold better. Try it and good luck!

Jess said...

Hi Quinn,

It's me again. I don't want to buy a whole tin of milk powder, what would you suggest as a substitute? Thanks.

Quinn on January 13, 2011 at 3:25 PM said...

Jess, unfortunately there is no substitute I could think of for milk powder. I buy a whole tin and they do last me forever, I use them to make scones and many sweet Asian buns and breads. I am sorry, if you do not have it, just omit it but I assure you it would not taste the same, even texture wise.

Jess said...

I shall heed your advise and head out to buy a tin of milk powder :-) Is there a specific one I should look for:full cream or skimmed or? Thanks.

Quinn on January 13, 2011 at 3:58 PM said...


They are all the same but I like to use good ones. This is the one I use and it is full cream.

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