Friday, March 4, 2011

Heirloom Baking and a Recipe

Grandma taking care of the apples

There is nothing like baking to bring a little joy and warmth to our home but pair it with a baking day with grandma and well, it's just bliss! Today we did just that, we picked my 91 year old grandma up after breakfast and brought her home to bake some pies and teach this mama how to make her butter tarts.

These two will go in the freezer

Sweetpea was thrilled that she was old enough to help with the pies. First thing this morning she was practising - she put on her apron, grabbed an oven mitt and had her own apple pie in the oven before I even drank my tea.

The girls filling their second pie

I have been trying to learn how to make grandma's apple pie for about the last 6 years. I'm not terrible, but I just haven't been able to get the hang of working the dough by myself yet. Today I finally did it (and of course I tasted to be sure and... yep! I did it!).

The girls were excellent pie fillers... although if I'm being perfectly honest Ladybug did more eating than filling but that was to be expected (even Sweetpea told grandma "probably we will give Ladybug a bowl of apples to muck in but I will make the pie).

Ladybug eating more than filling

I've never tried to make butter tarts and I didn't realize how easy they were to make. Now I think I am in trouble! We called them heirloom butter tarts because we had 3 generations baking today and we were using my great grandma's tart cutter (so really, there were 4 generations present). Grandma still has all of her mom's baking supplies and we use them every time.

Great grandma's tart cutter circa 18?? Well over one hundred years old - crazy!

Tarts, pre-filling

Whats that? You want the recipe? Ok, well its a grandma recipe which means there aren't exactly measurements but I'll do my best.

Try to eat just one... I dare you!

Heirloom Butter Tarts
Makes 12 tarts
Using your left over pie dough roll and cut out 12 tart shells and gently fit them into muffin tins
Place 1/2 a crushed pecan and a few raisins in the bottom of shells

In a small mixing bowl melt aprox 2 tbsp of butter, combine with about 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 egg, a dash of vanilla and some corn syrup (there is where the recipe fails me, I used about 2 1/2 large 'globs' - which I think would translate to a bit less than 1/2 a cup). (You could also use fresh maple syrup for maple tarts)

Spoon the syrup mixture into the tart shells. They should be just under 1/2 full.

Bake at 425 for 8 min, then turn down to 375 and bake another 10 min, until shells start to turn golden brown. Allow to cool before removing from tins.

What makes your home warm and cozy? Did you make these butter tarts? Please let me know how they turned out, I love to hear from you!


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