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Christmas Butter Tarts

Description

Matthew Batey, chef at Mission Hill Winery in British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, wants to make it clear that when it comes to the holidays and home, "my father is the cook in the family." Batey's father, Ian, enjoys baking as a means of relaxation after work, and inherited the family cookbook from his mother. Batey acknowledges that there are many fine variations of this classic tart recipe. "The one my father makes is full of the necessary raisins and the nice saucy butter sugar mixture but the addition of walnuts makes them our own," he says. They are so highly regarded that "when my siblings and I arrive to the family house during the festive season, we have to hunt the baked goods down. My dad hides them!" The honey and mango notes of Mission Hill Family Estate's aromatic Reserve Vidal Ice Wine pairs nicely with this tart, or try a sweet late-harvest Riesling, such as Arrowood's. —Steve Heimoff

Wine pairing: The honey and mango notes of Mission Hill Family Estate's aromatic Reserve Vidal Ice Wine pairs nicely with these. Or try a sweet late-harvest Riesling, such as Arrowood's.

Category
Desserts
Cuisine
American/New American
Source
Matthew Batey
Number of Servings
Makes 15 individual tarts
Ingredients
For the pastry shells:
2 cups butter, unsalted
1 cup sugar
1 vanilla pod, scraped
1 free-range egg
5 cups all-purpose flour

For the tart filling:
2 free range eggs
1 cup white sugar
1 cup seedless raisins
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
1/2 teaspoon clove, ground
1/3 cup butter
4 tablespoon heavy cream
1 cup broken walnuts, roasted
Directions
In an electric mixer, cream the butter with the sugar and vanilla. Add the egg gradually, scraping down bowl. Add flour and mix until dough forms. Rest dough in the refrigerator until chilled and then roll out and cut into two- or three-inch tart rounds and press into ungreased tart tins.Note: Leftover dough can be refrigerated or frozen for future use.

Warm oven to 375°F degrees. Beat the eggs and stir together with remaining ingredients, except walnuts. Bring to a simmer and cook at medium heat for three minutes. Add the walnuts and remove from heat. Place unbaked tart shells on flat pan and spoon the filling into tart rounds evenly. Bake for 15 minutes. Note: This recipe is easily doubled. Also allows for experimentation of other ingredients, such as a splash of Ice wine, rum or Bailey's.
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