Mini tarts made with an all-butter crust, brown sugar pecan pie filling, and tart cranberries.
My husband’s family used to own a pecan orchard. In the fall, there was always an overabundance of pecans. So, of course, I made lots of pecan pies. Unfortunately, I no longer have access to a pecan hoard, being thousands of miles away. But making pecan pies is still a holiday tradition.
This year I decided to switch it up a bit. I have been on a cranberry kick lately, and I realized they would be a tasty addition to the pie. Pecan pie, consisting mostly of sugar, can be overly sweet. The tartness from the cranberries balances out some of that sweetness.
I also thought that making tarts instead of pies might be a fun change. Guests can each have their own little pie, leaving room to try other desserts. ‘Cause I don’t know about you, but I like to sample everything!
I always make my pecan pies with an all-butter crust. This crust has a lot of butter! So much in fact that that if overmixed, the crust can become a paste. To avoid this, keep the butter as cold as possible and cut it into the flour by hand or pastry cutter. I would not use a food processor. The butter in the dough will solidify the longer it is refrigerated, making it harder to roll out. It can be left at room temperature for 15-30 minutes to soften before rolling and cutting.
Cranberry Pecan Tarts
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 1 stick butter 1 cup
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup cold water
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup corn syrup
- 4 tbsp butter melted
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 1/2 tbsp spiced rum
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cup pecan pieces toasted
- 120 each cranberries
- Mix flour and salt. Dice the butter into cubes and cut into flour. Mix in the water. Knead the dough until smooth. Shape into a disc. Wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour up to 24.
- Roll the dough into 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out 24 rounds with a 3 1/2 inch biscuit cutter. Gather scraps and reroll as needed. Spray 2 muffin tins. Fill the cups with the pastry circles, pressing them into the bottom and sides.
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place 5 cranberries and 1 tbsp of pecans in each muffin cup.
- Whisk eggs, salt, and brown sugar together until smooth. Add corn syrup, vanilla, and rum. Mix in the melted butter. Spoon 1- 1 1/2 tbsp of filling into each muffin cup. Bake for 45 minutes, rotating halfway through. Cool, remove from tin, and serve. Keep refrigerated.