Mini Fruit Tarts

raspberry-tarts May babies bring April showers.

I’ve now had four baby showers thrown for me in the last month and have been completely overwhelmed by the generosity of our family and friends.

Our little guy is totally set…from stroller to swing, blankets to books. We feel very loved. And somewhat more ready than we did a month ago, now armed with a dresserful of tiny clothes, several boxes of diapers, and a crib of baby-boy bedding, washed and ready to go.

teddy bear

I'm actually laughing at my cousin's son in this picture. He saw me pull the teddy bear out of the box and his eyes lit up. He immediate beelined for the bear, abandoning all the fun he was having with the crumpled tissue paper on the floor.

The showers have been such a delight…full of the sound of lots of women talking at once and of course, good eating. Shower food is typically finger food, which means you can easily graze the entire time you’re there…say two and a half hours. Not surprising that I had two midwife appointments six days apart, and I gained three pounds in that time.

3 pounds. 6 days. Yeah, that happened.

At the shower my closest friends threw for me, they even went the extra mile and had seasonal food. I know. There was a fantastic strawberry lemonade punch, chocolate peanut butter cake (which is always in season), and these mini fruit tarts, graced with early season raspberries and strawberries.

flags

My friend Sarah made this cake and cupcakes, complete with mini-banner and flags matching a sweet bigger banner hanging on the walls…chocolate ganache and earthy browns and greens…these are a few of my favorite things. (Click on the image to find out why Sarah’s a supermom.)

After eating, oh, I don’t know, about 15 of these tarts in two days (they let me take the leftovers home – big mistake)…I knew I had to feature them on the blog with sweet, seasonal strawberries popping up all over the place. The mini crusts are full of butter and taste like heaven. The flaky crust is topped with a simple cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla mixture that I’d like to bathe in. A small piece of fruit is placed on top (this season it’s strawberries and raspberries, but can you imagine these with peaches? kiwi? I’m dying here) and then finished off with a sweet limeade glaze (which sounds a little out of place, but is definitely and perfectly in its rightful place on these tarts).

Keep these in mind next time you need a dainty dessert, or the next time you need to gain 3 pounds in 6 days.

tarts All photos (except the one of me and the bear) were taken by my talented friend Rachel. Isn’t she a fabulous photographer?

Mini Fruit Tarts

Mini Fruit Tarts

(recipe from Paula Deen by way of Something Swanky by way of my good friend Jen.

(yields 24 mini tarts)

These delicious mini tarts are not only pretty on a plate, but overwhelmingly delicious. Have them with spring's strawberries, or grace them with summer's bounty of peaches and kiwis. These are perfect for any party.

Ingredients

For the Crust:

1/2 c. powdered sugar

1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened and sliced

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For the Filling:

1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened

1/2 c.sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

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Topping:

Fresh strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, kiwi, or peaches, cut into small pieces

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Glaze:

1 (6-oz.) can frozen limeade concentrate, thawed

1 tbsp. cornstarch

1 tbsp. fresh lime juice

1/4 c. granulated sugar

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350*. Grease mini muffin tins generously with cooking spray. I like to use a greased paper towel to make sure every nook and cranny is greased.

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For the crust:

Combine the powdered sugar, flour, and butter in a food processor. Pulse until the dough forms a ball. (No food processor? Some intense mixing with your fingers will do the same job.)

Place a scoop of dough into each mini muffin cavity and press down in the center with your thumbs to form a mini pie shell. (I used a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop for this step.) Press each crust edge a few times with the tines of a fork and bake for 8-10 minutes.

The bottoms will rise (forming more of a cookie than a crust, so as soon as they come out of the oven use the back of a wooden spoon to press down the center of the tart so there will be room for the filling.

***Cool completely.

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For the filling:

Beat the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer until no lumps remain. Place into a large ziploc bag. Cut off one corner of the bag and use it to pipe the filling into the cooled crusts.

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Add your fruit pieces to the top of the filling.

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For the glaze:

Mix limeade, cornstarch, lime juice, and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat until clear and thick, about 5 minutes. Let cool. Brush the glaze onto the top of tarts. You will have some leftover glaze.

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Store tarts in the refrigerator, removing about 15 minutes before serving.

These were good to eat the next day (store in refrigerator overnight), but I wouldn't let them last much longer than that (as though you would even want to).

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