In Malta, strawberry season announces that winter is officially over. Our strawberry season is quite early in the year, from November up to end of April. This is because it is too hot in summer to properly grow this delicious, red fruit, or any fruit for that matter (aside from watermelon). By May, they are so sweet naturally, that you hardly need to add any extra sugar to them at all!
Last year, I experimented with Strawberry coconut milk ice-cream and smoothies mostly, but this year, seeing I am still in a baking mood, I wanted to try proper mini tarts.
- 200 gr. fresh juicy strawberries, washed, hulled and diced in quite small pieces
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Corn flour
- 1 pack of store-bought shortcrust pastry, defrosted.
Please preheat your oven to 170 degrees celsius, or the temperature as indicated on the packaging of the pastry. In mean time, take out a muffin tray, and cut out circles, the size of your muffin tray. This way, the circles will form the pastry into little tarts, perfect for a one size portion. Gently push the circles into the muffin tray.
In mean time, mix the fresh strawberries with the tablespoon of vanilla sugar and corn flour, and leave aside. Stir regularly so the sugar and starch mix with the strawberry juice that is being released. After a good 15 minutes, divide the strawberry filling between the pastry cups.
If you have pastry left, you can cut strips from that, and use these to create a lattice crust on top. I made 6 mini tarts, and added the lattice crust to 3 of them.
Once your oven is hot, bake the tarts on 170 degrees celsius (hot air), for about 17 – 19 minutes. Check regularly to ensure the tarts do not burn.
Once the pastry is thoroughly cooked, take the tarts out of the oven and leave to cool down. Serve cold on it’s own or with some vanilla ice-cream on the side!