I've been making pineapple tarts for the last 3 years, each year testing different recipes to see if any is THE ONE I'm looking for. Individual preference can vary much for pineapple tarts. Recently, I found that the phrase "melt in the mouth" can also have different meanings, based on individual expectation. Some use it to refer to cookie crisp, but will disintegrate in your mouth, like Kuih Bangkit. For me, I prefer it to be of a powdery texture such that when you just pop the tart into your mouth, it starts to disintegrate. I hope I have not confused you further...lol...
I tried two different recipes this year. The first was from The Little Teochew. I got attracted by her beautiful pictures and the title of her post, "Buttery Melt-in-your-mouth Pastry". It looks like what I may be looking for, since the recipe contains cornflour. I made a mistake by reducing the amount of icing sugar. As such, the pastry tasted quite bland. The recipe uses unsalted butter, which I later find out, does not yield the kind of pastry I like. Because my pineapple jam is tangy, I prefer my pastry to be on the salty side.
Like what Ju mentioned in her post, there are tonnes of recipes out there, what is nice for some may not be others' preference.
So I continued searching and reading up more on pineapple tarts. Someone (I can't recall where I read it from) mentioned that milk powder may yield a more powdery effect. I also learnt that the rubbing-in method which I have been using possibly provides a crisp, melt-in-the-mouth kind of texture. To get a powdery texture, the creaming method (i.e. creaming butter with sugar, like our usual cake) should be used.
Pinkcocoa Tabetai offers a detailed and clear comparison on that.
I decided to try her pastry recipe because she seemed to have a good knowledge of pineapple tarts and her recipe has what I was looking for, cornflour and milk powder. I was even happier when I see custard powder as one of the ingredients. I had a big pack of custard powder sitting in my cupboard and was wondering what I can do with it.
I made a slight change to her recipe though. I replaced the unsalted butter and salt with salted butter. The pastry was super soft and quite difficult to work with. I had to take small portion out of the fridge to work individually. But the result was very encouraging. I tested the tarts straight after they had cooled down. It was powdery and melt-in-the-mouth, as compared to my first attempt. Even hubby said this version was much better. He didn't like the first version of the pastry.
I am so glad that I have finally found the pastry that suits the taste of my family. I will be using this recipe from now onwards. Hope you'll find yours too.
I will be submitting this to the monthly blog event, Aspiring Bakers #3: My Favorite CNY Cookie (Jan 2011). Due to some personal reason, I've missed my submission last month. Hope to make it this round.