I am not a patriotic person. Sure, I don’t like being mistaken for an American, but I’m not going to wear a maple leaf on my backpack. I only tell people I’m Canadian when they ask. I feel being Canadian doesn’t define me, and patriotism and nationalism can cause disharmony between people. I’m a big fan of working towards common global unity, all of us on the same team, you know?
That is, until Steffany and I broached the subject of Butter Tarts. These are not just mini-versions of your common southern pecan pie! They are so much more! Rich, sweet, flaky yet runny: really, butter tarts are a national treasure! Move over Loon, let’s replace the symbol on our one dollar coin with a butter tart.
Anyways, it’s been at least 2 years since I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying butter tarts, but when a friend offered me his gigantic bag of walnuts to bake with, I knew I had my excuse.
With Steffany’s help, we whipped up a mean batch, and I have been in a sugar coma since. Obviously we had to make some adaptations, since we’re in Berlin, but I honestly couldn’t take the difference.
Recipe adapted from Canadian Living. I have included the German ingredient equivalent in italics.
Butter Tart Filling
- 3/4 cup brown sugar (Brauner Zucker)
- 1/2 cup maple syrup (Ahornsirup)
- 1/3 cup melted butter (I used salted butter)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup chopped walnut pieces (you could also substitute in some raisins or pecans, but I’m not a fan of these)
Sour Cream Pastry
- 1 1/4 cups white flour (Weizenmehl Type 405)
- 1/2 cup of frozen salted butter
- 2 tbsp cold water
- 4 tsp sour cream
Making the Pastry
- Take your butter out of the freezer and grate it through a thick whole cheese grater. I find this much easier than working with a pastry knife or other utensils.
- Combine flour and grated butter in a large bowl. Mix sparingly with fingertips until it’s just combined.
- Whisk cold water and sour cream together, and then combine with pastry mixture.
- Shape dough into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap, and shove it in the fridge for 30 mins.
- 30 minutes later, roll the dough out on a floured surface till it is ~3mm thick, and using a cup, punch out some circles that are approximately 7-8cm diameter.
- Press these into muffin tins to form tart crusts and return them to the fridge for 30 mins.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Crack those nuts! Once you have 1 cup of nuts, chop them up and pieces.
- In a bowl combine maple sirup, brown sugar, salt, melted butter, and eggs. Whisk to combine.
- Retrieve the muffins tins from the fridge and distribute walnut pieces evenly throughout each pastry cup.
- Ladle 2 tablespoons of filling liquid into each pastry cup.
- Bake for 20-25 mins.
- Resist eating these straight away for fear of burning your mouth. Exercise your will power and wait 20 mins.