Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Melt-in-your-mouth Parmesan Cheese Nastar Pineapple Tarts

My family and friends that have known me well enough would know that I am totally obsessed with pineapple tarts!!!

If you have followed my blog and read my yearly pineapple tarts baking adventures at here (2011), here (2012), here (2012), here (2013), here (2014), here (2015), here (2016) and here (2017) and here (2017 too!) you would have know that I have finally reached the stage of finding the pineapple tarts recipes that I want! YES! I have found the ONE!!! Not just ONE but many ONEs! LOL!

After many years of research, I have managed to formulate my BEST melt-in-the-mouth nastar pineapple recipe at here and my BEST easy and sturdy melt-in-your-mouth open faced pineapple tart recipe at here and published in the book, Bake and Celebrate published by Marshall Cavendish, now selling in major book shops in Singapore and Malaysia.

So, is this the end of my pineapple tart research? Errr... Yes and No! LOL! I know that I have found THE BEST and I know that I can't find any better... Thus, instead of comparing more pineapple tarts recipes, I will derive a variety of interesting specialised pineapple tarts. Interesting specialised pineapple tarts??? Pineapple tarts with special additions and they are well-optimised too just like the best recipes that I adored.

And here, I proudly present these ultimate melt-in-your-mouth Parmesan cheese Nastar Pineapple Tarts!!!

Sweet. Salty. Milky. Cheesy. Melty. These cheese pineapple tarts can literally melt in your mouth!!! Gosh! I love love love these melt-in-my-mouth pineapple tarts with its subtle cheesy umami taste! They are so irresistibly yummy!!! A MUST TRY recipe if you love sweet salty and melt-in-your-mouth pastry.

Parmesan cheese nastar pineapple tarts
Melt-in-your-mouth Parmesan Cheese Nastar Pineapple Tarts

How and why are these Parmesan cheese enriched pastry so melty?
If you have known Parmesan cheese and the art of baking pineapple tart pastry well enough, you would know that the addition of Parmesan cheese will make the pastry way less melty. To counter this situation, I had adjusted the flour composition of my recipe to be 50% all purpose flour 50% cornflour and the pastry turns out to be really really really melty!!! YUM!!!

However, due to the "all-out" meltiness, these tarts are obviously fragile to handle. So please handle them with care like the way you will handle the ultimate melt-in-your-mouth Nastar pineapple tarts. If you are stacking them in a jar, please place pieces of baking or parchment paper in between every layer of tarts.

Due to its reduced flour protein strength, please be aware that this ultimate melt-in-your-mouth cheese enriched pastry is slightly less stable and will spread a little more than the ultimate melt-in-your-mouth Nastar pineapple tarts after baking. So, it is important not to use cake flour or all-purpose / plain flour that contains less than 9.5% protein to bake these tarts. If you want a firmer stable pastry, you might want to adjust the flour composition to be 60% all purpose flour 40% cornflour or even more % all purpose flour less % cornflour accordingly. And of course... if you make any changes to this recipe, you have to accept that your tarts won't be as melty as mine!!! ... ke ke!

Can we use this recipe to bake open faced or enclosed pineapple tarts? No. If you stick on to the flour composition of this recipe, please do NOT use it to bake open faced or enclosed pineapple tarts because the dough will be too soft and not stable enough to handle.

Parmesan cheese nastar pineapple tarts
Like my previous ultimate melt-in-your-mouth pineapple tarts...
These cheese pineapple tarts are ultimately melty too!!!
Parmesan cheese nastar pineapple tarts
"Bake me! Bake me! We are so yummy!"

By now, I hope that you are fully convinced these cheesy pineapple tarts are very yummy. So why wait? Bake them! Watch my video and see how I baked mine. Then, you will bake yours? LOL!

Here's my melt-in-the-mouth Parmesan pineapple tart recipe.

Please use the exact weight and make sure that all ingredients are at room temperature.

Makes about 40-45 nastar tarts

For the pastry:
200g unsalted butter*, well soften at room temperature
40g icing sugar, sifted
30g egg yolk
120g all-purpose / plain flour with 10% protein** - please check protein content
120g cornflour
100g Parmesan cheese powder
1/4 tsp baking powder

*Do not use salted butter or add salt into this recipe because the added cheese is salty.
**Important - Please do not use cake flour or all-purpose / plain flour that contains less than 9.5% protein.

For the egg wash:
1 egg yolk
2 tsp milk, regular milk with 4% fat

store bought or homemade pineapple jam (see below) to fill the tarts

For the pastry:

Using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and icing sugar at medium speed until creamy for about 1 min. Do not over-beat. While beating, beat in egg yolk until all are well-incorporated.

Combine flour, cornflour, cheese powder, baking powder and salt and use a medium coarse sieve to sift flour mixture into the butter mixture. If you prefer your pastry to be all-out smooth and melty, discard the coarse cheese that is left in the sieve. If you prefer your pastry to have a nutty aftertaste, you can add the coarse cheese that is left in the sieve into your butter mixture. Use a spoon or spatula to mix to form a soft pliable dough.

Line baking trays with baking papers. Preheat oven at 350ºF or 180ºC.

Use a nastar presss (see video) to press dough into long strips. Roll the dough strip around each rolled tablespoonful of pineapple jam with its ruffled side facing outwards. Cut any excess dough.

Arrange the shaped tarts on the prepared tray. Use a fine brush to brush the top and the side of the pastry with egg wash. Bake at for 14-16 mins or until golden brown - Please note that the addition of Parmesan cheese can cause the pastry brown a little faster than the pastry without the cheese and the baking time and temperature may vary a little if you are making your pineapple tarts in different sizes. My nastar tarts are all baked at 180ºC for 14 mins.

Allow all tarts to cool slightly on the baking trays for about 10 mins and transfer them onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 weeks depending on the types of pineapple jam that you used.

Warning: These melt-in-your-mouth tarts are fragile. So please handle them with care. If you are stacking them in a jar, please place pieces of baking or parchment paper in between every layer of tarts.

Here's my homemade pineapple jam recipe plus a video showing how I cooked the jam.

To make your own homemade pineapple jam to fill about 100 pineapple tarts:
2 pineapples, about 1.3-1.6 kg each before peeling and all are about 1.5 kg after peeling
250g caster sugar*
2-3 pandan leaves, briefly shredded and knotted

*IMPORTANT TIP: Depending on the sizes and sweetness of the pineapples that you used, you can adjust the amount of added sugar accordingly. However, please be aware that this recipe has suggested the amount of sugar to ensure the pineapple jam will preserve and store well at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. If you prefer to reduce the amount of added sugar, you will have to either store your jam and tarts in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or consume all within 1-2 weeks if you store the tarts at room temperature. Please be aware that chilling will affect the texture of the pastry too.

Peel the pineapples and cut them into chunks. Do not discard the core as it contains lots of fiber.

Using a blender or processor, process pineapple chunks into purée in small batches. Processing the pineapples in small batches helps by avoiding the addition of water to process the pineapples. Transfer pineapple purée into large cooking pan with wide cooking surface.

Using medium low heat, cook pineapple purée and pandan leaves with occasional stirring until thicken. Beware of the hot splattering pineapple juice while cooking the jam.

When the pineapple purée lose more than 80% of its liquid and becoming like paste, stir in sugar and the jam will look watery again. Reduce cooking heat, and cook until the jam look like a paste and translucent-looking.

IMPORTANT TIP: Pineapple jam can become firmer when it is cooled. Besides, the baking of open-faced pineapple tarts can dry up the jam slightly. Hence, it is better to under-cook the jam rather than over-cooking it. If the jam is still too wet after cooling, you can cook the jam again to reduce the moisture further. If it's too dry, diluting the jam with water will ruin its texture.

Store jam in an airtight container in a fridge for up to 2 weeks or in a freezer for up to 12 months.

Happy Baking and nom nom nom!
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  1. Looks yummy, thanks for detailed guidelines.

  2. Zoe, your research paid off! These look delightful!


  3. This looks fabulous! I love great renditions of pineapple tarts!

  4. yummm.... a savory touch with the cheese.

  5. Hi,Zoe thank you so much for sharing this recipe,can I know how many cornflour should I use in this recipe?

    1. Hi Macy,

      So sorry about the typo error. I have just updated the recipe and there is 120g cornflour in it. Happy Baking!


  6. There isn't any corn flour listed in the recipe?

    1. Hi, So sorry about the typo error. I have just updated the recipe and there is 120g cornflour in it. Happy Baking!


  7. Hi Zoe i know you live in melbourne as i live in melbourne too. May i know what brand of flour did u get? Thanks.

    1. Hi Rachel,

      I'm using Italian OO from Woolies. You can use the white wings flour too. Both will work well :) Happy Baking.


  8. Hi Zoe, I came across your blog looking for keju naster tart. I made it. Honestly in Sg most flour exp local contain max 7% protient. So me took gamble to use AP Flour. well I let it rest abit and use little flour for dusting my mould. Wala it works! So delicious! I let it rest and ate only 1 pc.. Haha

  9. I wish I can send you the pic!

    1. Hi Liza, I'm happy to hear that you like the recipe and the flour with 7% protein works well with it too. Enjoy the tarts :)

  10. Hi Zoe. . great recipe. .i thought of adding 2tbsp of milk powder to the pastry. .what do you think?

    1. Sorry Sarah! I have not tried baking these with the addition of milk powder. Can't tell you if the addition is good or not.

  11. Just made, super rich and nice ! Really melt in my mouth. I made the enclosed round type as I did not have the nastar press. Taste great!