RECIPE: Cranberry, mascarpone & almond praline tartlets
The fact that they're made with dried fruit and Christmassy spices give these easy tarts a festive feel
Preparation time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Shortbread tart case:
500g butter, cold and cubed
250g (1¼ cups) sugar
1 egg yolk
125g dried apples, finely chopped
200g soft, dried eating apricots, finely chopped
100g dried cranberries, finely chopped
125-250ml (½-1 cup) water
10ml (2 tsp) sliced ginger preserve and syrup
1 cinnamon stick
150g cranberry jelly
500g mascarpone cheese
80g almonds, chopped
1. To make the tart case, combine the butter, flour and sugar in a food processor and blitz to a breadcrumb-like texture, before working in the yolk to bring the dough together. Take care not to overwork the dough.
2. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for 20 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 150°C.
4. Roll a third of the dough between two sheets of baking paper until 1cm thick, then cut circles to fit 12 tart cases.
5. Press the circles into the cups of fluted tart pans, then bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
6. For the filling, simmer the apples, apricots and cranberries with ½-1 cup water until softened. Add the sliced ginger preserve and syrup, cinnamon stick and cranberry jelly.
7. For the praline, melt 100g sugar in a dry pan until caramelised without stirring. Once golden, pour over the chopped nuts and leave to set on baking paper before crushing or breaking into shards.
8. Fill the shortbread cases with a spoonful of mascarpone, then top with the cranberry filling and almond praline.
WINE PAIRING SUGGESTION:
Bon Courage Like Father Like Son Rosé 2017
Winemakers André Bruwer and his son, Jacques, have combined to produce this wine which is loaded with strawberries, red berries and candy floss. It's easy drinking and well balanced. It's priced at around R42.