recipes, specifically buttertarts

We are in the midst of replacing our countertops (long story) and I had to empty my tiny little cupboard of recipe books. 

Like most people, I have an odd assortment of recipes books.  A few that I use, a few that have sentimental value, a few that I have for the artwork (what? doesn’t everyone check who illustrated the cookbook?  Andy Warhol and Charley Harper both worked as graphic artists!)

Mostly though, I have tons of clippings of recipes that I absolutely have to try.  This morning I sorted through everything, weeding out clippings and books that I probably won’t get to anytime soon.  All the other clippings are in a bag waiting to be tested and, if worthy, pasted into a notebook.

In going through my clippings I had to laugh at how my tastes have changed over the years.  Tossed were dozens of salad dressing and salad recipes, many variations of pork chops, lamb stews, complicated Szechwan dishes and so on.  I also laughed because I found about five recipes for butter tarts.  mmmm.  My mom makes amazing butter tarts and variations thereof (sadly with lard-based pastry so I can no longer enjoy them).  They are very Canadian although some of you may see similarities to a pecan pie recipe.  Here is a recipe from Canadian Living magazine:

Butter Tarts

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 tsp each vanilla and vinegar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  1. In bowl, whisk together brown sugar, corn syrup, egg, butter, vanilla, vinegar and salt; set aside.
  2. Choosing your own pastry recipe, roll out pastry to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a 4-inch round cookie cutter cut out 12 circles. Fit into tart tin cups.
  3. Divide raisins among cups. Spoon in filling until 3/4 full.
  4. Bake in 450-degree oven for about 12 minutes or until filling is puffed an bubbly and pastry is golden.
  5. Let stand on rack for 1 minute. Immediately run spatula around tarts to loosen; transfer to rack and let cool.

May be eaten warm, luke-warm, cool, cold or frozen (yes, as a kid I’d sneak into the freezer and eat them as a lovely frozen treat).


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Comments 5

  1. Neora Chana April 27, 2010

    I love old cookbooks and etiquette books; read them like novels. I love Peg Bracken\’s books; the I Hate to Cook Book and one who\’s title says something about a window over the sink. And the graphics are great fun!

  2. Sophie April 27, 2010

    Neora, my standby, never-fail chocolate cake recipe came from the I Hate To Cook Book! I think I have long since lost the book, but the recipe lives on…

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