Friday, January 4, 2019

Melt-in-the-Mouth Gula Melaka Pineapple Tarts - HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!

Happy 2019!

I'm so glad that the tough and complicated 2018 is gone. And I can't wait to start my new job in 2019. I can see that the grey sky is completely clear for now and the future seems bright and nice.

Hence, I don't have any new year resolution for 2019. All I want to do is to be ME! A diligent mum who is always try her best for everything! With my full-time job, I hope that I can juggle well for my family, running, baking and also sharing recipes. And if you like any of the recipes that I have shared, please let me know! Your LIKES, SHARE, FOLLOW at my Facebook at here or here or my Instagram @zoebakeforhappykids are very much appreciated. Thank you!!!

For you and me, I would love to share something groundbreaking for my first 2019 post! So here, I proudly present... My Melt-in-the-Mouth Gula Melaka Pineapple Tarts!!!

Ahem, I have to say this pineapple tarts recipe is one of the best exotic pineapple tarts recipes that I have ever created. Very nice!!!

melt in the mouth gula Melaka pineapple tarts enclosed open faced
Proudly presenting my Melt-in-the-Mouth Gula Melaka Pineapple Tarts...
Very nice!!! ^-^

Are you a fan of my melt-in-the-mouth pineapple tart recipes at here, here, here, here and here?

I have to tell you that my ultimate melty gula Melaka pineapple tarts are YUM!!!

If you look closely, you will see that this recipe is actually a fusion of the recipes from here and here and both the pineapple jam and tart pastry are made with gula Melaka instead of sugar. However, due to the fact that gula Melaka doesn't really have a strong distinctive taste and fragrance that clearly differentiates from other sugars and even the plain white sugar, the significant gula Melaka added in the tarts are surprisingly subtle! Despite that, my son and I can actually taste the presence of gula Melaka in these tarts but my husband is totally clueless!!! LOL!!!

Then, you might ask... Can you use this recipe to bake open-faced pineapple tarts?

YES!!! See this but...

melt in the mouth gula Melaka pineapple tarts open faced
Yes! I can use this melty gula Melaka pastry to bake open faced pineapple tarts too!

Please read the following if you are thinking to use this recipe to bake open-faced pineapple tarts.

1) For each tart, each 12g pastry is surprisingly sturdy enough to hold 10g pineapple jam.

2) Due to the fact that the pastry is very melty, please do not roll the pastry too thin and cut the pastry into large shapes because the thinner and larger pastry tends to be more fragile to handle.

3) You might want to bake the tarts slightly longer so that the thoroughly-baked tarts are firmer to handle.

4) Although this soft butter pastry is actually ok-to-handle for rolling and shaping, decorating the pastry with a pincher is actually not advisable as the pinched-decorated part of the baked pastry can be quite tender to handle.

5) Unlike the enclosed pineapple tarts, the open-faced tarts won't crack at all. The good thing is they will look perfectly nice before and after baking / cooling!

Wanna bake these awesome pineapple tarts? I will show you how... In my video, you will see that the enclosed pineapple tarts will crack slightly during baking but the pastry will shrink back to look nice and intact after cooling. If you are concerned about the cracks, you can omit the addition of baking powder but the baking powder can actually make the pastry extra nice and melty.

melt in the mouth gula Melaka pineapple tart enclosed
No worries!
The enclosed pineapple tarts with some cracks will look nice and intact after cooling.
melt in the mouth gula Melaka pineapple tarts
And they taste very melty and NICE too!!!

If you like Chinese New Year baking, you might want to try my HIGHLY RECOMMENDED very popular recipes:

Best Sturdy Melt-in-the-mouth Enclosed Pineapple Tarts at here
Best Sturdy Melt-in-your-mouth Open Faced Pineapple Tarts at here

Best Ultimate Melt-in-your-mouth Nastar Pineapple Tarts at here
Ultimate Melt-in-the-mouth Malay Style Condensed Milk Enclosed or Nastar Pineapple Tarts at here
Ultimate Melt-in-the-mouth Salted Egg Yolk Pineapple Tarts 咸蛋黄凤梨酥 that are baked with Salted Egg Yolk Butter Pastry at here
Melt-in-your-mouth Parmesan Cheese Nastar Pineapple Tarts at here
Easy Fail Proof Strawberry Jam Butter Cookies at here
Parmesan Cheese Butter Cookies at here
Best Nyonya Butter Cookies / Biscuit Samprit at here
4 Different Chinese Almond Cookies recipes at here
Ultimate Melt in the Mouth Chinese Cashew Cookies 腰果酥 at here
Melt in the Mouth Crispy Chinese Butter Cashew Cookies 香脆牛油腰果酥 at here
Melt-in-your-mouth Pork Floss Chinese Cookies at here
Melt-in-your-mouth Salted Egg Yolk Cookies at here
My favourite Kek Lapis recipe at here
Crispy Nestum Cereal Cookies at here
Extra Crispy Nestum loaded Cookies at here - extra crispy with twice amount of Nestum!

Buttery Crispy Nestum cookies (with NO egg and a subtle melty texture) at here

If you like my blog and recipes, please LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW me at either my Facebook at here or here or my Instagram @zoebakeforhappykids Thank you for your support!

Here's the recipe.

For the gula Melaka pineapple jam:
Makes enough to fill about 25-30 pineapple tarts:
1 kg pineapple, before peeling, about 700g after peeling
3-4 pandan leaves, briefly shredded and knotted, or more if desired
60g gula Melaka, briefly chopped*

* IMPORTANT TIP: Depending on the sizes and sweetness of the pineapples that you used, you can adjust the amount of added gula Melaka accordingly.

Please be aware that this jam recipe contains a minimal REDUCED amount of gula Melaka and this sugar-reduced pineapple jam will preserve and store well at dry (not humid) cool room temperature for less than 1 week.

If you prefer to reduce the amount of added gula Melaka even further, you will have to either store your jam and tarts in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or consume all within less than 1 week if you store the tarts at cool and dry room temperature. Please be aware that chilling will affect the texture of the pastry too.

If you prefer to store your tarts in a warm and humid place for more than 2 weeks, you will have to add more sugar (up to 150g gula Melaka or 120g caster sugar per 700g pineapple purée used) because sugar is a preservative.

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 gula Melaka. Reduce cooking heat, and cook until the sugar has fully dissolved into the jam and the jam looks like a paste.

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.

For the gula Melaka syrup:
40g gula Melaka, roughly chopped
50g coconut milk, fat reduced with 13% fat**
1 pandan leaves, roughly shredded and knotted

** If unavailable, use 25g regular coconut milk with 24% fat plus 25g coconut water.

Place all gula Melaka syrup ingredients in a saucepan and cook over low heat until gula melaka is melted. Remove from heat. Discard the pandan leaves and allow the syrup to cool completely at room temperature.

For the gula Melaka tart pastry:
Makes about 25-30
100g unsalted butter, very soften at room temperature
25g gula Melaka syrup, see above
15g egg yolk at room temperature
100g all purpose / plain flour with 10% protein
50g cornflour
a pinch (1/16 tsp) baking powder***
1/2 tsp salt

*** WARNING: The addition of baking powder will make the tarts crack slightly during baking. And it's OK!!! These minor cracks will subside to almost unnoticeable when the pineapple tarts are cooled completely. If you fuss about this crack issue, I suggest that you shouldn't use this recipe. To minimise the cracks, you can try to omit the addition of baking powder but the tarts without the baking powder won't be as melty as they should be.

For the egg wash:
1 egg yolk
1 tsp milk
a pinch of salt

Preheat oven at 170°C / 340°F. Line baking trays with baking papers.

Using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter, gula Melaka syrup and egg yolk for about 1-2 mins or until creamy and combined.

Sift flour, cornflour, baking powder and salt into the butter mixture. Use a spoon or spatula to mix until all are well incorporated. Transfer mixture onto a plastic wrap and use the wrap to knead until mixture forms a soft pliable dough. Wrap dough with plastic wrap and allow it to rest at a fridge for about 30 mins. Do not over-chill the dough.

To shape the enclosed tarts:
Roll pineapple filling (about 8g) and divided pastry dough (about 12g) into balls.

Flatten a piece of dough and place a piece of the roll pineapple filling in the middle. Bring the edges of the dough together and press lightly to seal. Roll it in between your palms to shape it into a ball.

Arrange the tarts on the prepared trays. Use a fine brush to brush the top and the side of the pastry dough with egg wash.

To shape the open faced pineapple tarts:
On a lightly floured surface, use a rolling pin to roll dough into 0.5 cm thickness (do not roll the pastry thinner than this thickness) and cut them into shapes with preferred cookie cutter (preferably a small cutter) and decorated the edge with a pincher if desired but please be aware that the pinched-decorated part of the baked pastry can be quite tender to handle.

Arrange the cut pastry onto the prepared tray and use a fine brush to brush the edges lightly with egg wash. Place about 10g (more or less according to the size of your tarts) pineapple jam to fill the center of each pastry (each pastry should weigh about 12g).

To bake all tarts:
Bake for 12-15 mins for the open faced tarts or 15-18 mins for the enclosed tarts until the pastry are firm and light golden brown at their sides and base, swapping the trays around halfway through baking. Please note that the baking time and temperature may vary a little if you use make your pineapple tarts in different shapes or sizes.

Allow the 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 and storage duration can vary according to the type (with or without preservative, with full amount of sugar or sugar reduced) of pineapple jam that you used.

Happy Baking
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