The other day, I got one of those really good batches of strawberries from the produce stand. It’s always a bummer when you find strawberries, and they smell good, look great but taste like nothing…. then, when you come across really good ones.. you know, that taste so good you almost wonder if they have been genetically altered?! Yes, I found a whole batch of taste-so-good-they-are-almost-fake strawberries. Oh yeah! (Insert happy dance)
I happen to be
watching listening to my local news, and someone found a $500,000 emerald ring off the coast of Key West. Can you believe that? And, to be honest it looks like some tacky costume jewelry you’d see at a prom. Go figure. I probably would have found it, and given it to my kid, and then it would have gotten lost once more. Hmmm, if I ever come across some tacky jewelery near the sea, I will be more observant.
Anyway, back to strawberries. Well, first the tart shells. You can cheat and do these with pre-made pie crust, or you can make my recipe here– and you can see how I made mini tart shells.
Miniature foods are good for your booty. Portion control!
I also have to apologize for my lack of posting… I have been busy getting ready to head out to our yearly photo visit:
No, we don’t stay there… we just pop in to see if this is still there:
He’s talking about getting a tattoo with our wedding date… to be honest, there is not much room left for that… but he wants me to design it, and that’s pretty cool.
So, I have been busy planning a trip out of town, designing tattoos, creating recipes for a video I will be doing with Moovision, and well, just plain busy.
And, soon I will be cooking in the tiniest kitchen ever and having a cold beer in 95 degree weather. Oh yes, I’ll be fishin’ too.
And, before you go thinking I’m going to some le-de-da resort…. nope! A 1950s cottage in Islamorada, Fl. I’m bringing the “resort amenities” with me. I’m not high maintenance. A cooler & snacks = resort.
- For the crust:
- 6 tbs softened butter at room temp
- ¼ c granulated sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- ½ tsp almond extract
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1½ to 1¾ c all purpose flour
- 3 tbs ice water
- In a food processor, mix the butter and sugar until creamy.
- Add the egg yolks, salt,the extracts, and the ice water.
- Mix once more.
- Add in the flour and pulse just until dough comes together.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the freezer 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375
- Roll out to ⅛ inch thickness on a floured surface.
- Cut out circles using a fluted edge 3" circular cookie cutter.
- Place each circle into a nonstick muffin tin, gently press down using a portion of dough wrapped in plastic wrap.
- On top of dough, place a silicon (or paper*) muffin liner. Place 1 tbs of raw dry beans in each.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes.
- Remove the liners and bake and additional 1-2 minutes to "dry out" shells
- Remove from oven.
- While shells are baking:
- Wash out your food processor.
- Make filling
- 1 c cottage cheese (excess liquid removed)
- 4 tbs sugar
- 1 pint strawberries that have been diced and placed in a bowl with 1 tbs sugar and allowed to macerate.
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp meringue powder
- Place the cottage cheese, sugar, vanilla,meringue powder and 5 tbs of the diced strawberries and their liquid in a food processor.
- Pulse until smooth, scraping sides if needed.
- Taste- adjust sugar if needed (some strawberries are sweeter than others)
- Fill tart shells with mixture.
- Two options here:
- Bake at 350 for 10 minutes for a firm, cheesecake like consistency. (my personal fave)
- Once cooled, top w/ remaining berries.
I hope you guys all have an awesome day… 🙂