Mini Lattice Crust Apple Tarts
Apples make for some of the best pie recipes. Good old fashioned aromas from baking apples entice us all. Golden delicious apples were used to make these apple tarts. A couple of other good choices for baking apple pies include Honeycrisp, and the Granny Smith which is known to have flavors that hold up under heat and give you a good balance of sweet and tarty flavor. Because these tarts have a lattice top they are by our standards one of those fun and easy baking recipes that impress everyone because they look fancy, but in fact they are simple to create. The pie filling recipe here uses 3 to 4 large apples to fill the 12 cups. This recipe is not that high in sugar usage calling for only 1/2 cup brown sugar for the entire filling recipe. You will find with experimenting that many baking recipes call for large amounts of sugar. Yes, we all know it is important when baking to stick to the recipe, but Grandmother developed her own style of baking that often halved the amount of sugar called for. Many baked goods are overly sweet so it becomes a test of trial and error if you want to cut down on certain ingredients or substitute ingredients. Whenever possible use freshly squeezed lemon juice in your baking rather than bottled lemon juice.
Makes(2)9" Crusts or 12 Tarts as shown
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter
4-5 Tablespoons cold water
3-4 apples (We used Golden Delicious)
1/2 lemon for the juice
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon + a sprinkling for garnish
2 teaspoons all purpose flour
1 Tablespoon butter
(1) regular 12 hole muffin tray
Cut the apples in quarters, peel, remove the core and chop into very small pieces for this filling.
Put the chopped apples into a small mixing bowl.
Squeeze the juice from the lemon and pour it into the chopped apples.
In a small container, stir together the brown sugar, cinnamon and flour; then stir this into the chopped apples.
Take the butter and break it into small bits and stir into the apple mixture.
The butter will melt while the pie is baking and add more flavor.
Spoon the filling into the mini pie crusts.
Lattice Tart Crusts:
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Grease each of the muffin tray hole bottoms and sides and set aside.
Prepare your tart crusts.
Sift the flour into bowl and mix together with the salt.
Cut in butter with a pastry cutter.
You can also use two butter knives if you don't have a pastry cutter.
Continue to cut work the mixture until it resembles the texture of coarse cornmeal.
Now, use a fork to mix in the cold water until it is just incorporated.
Its okay if you see little specks of butter, and flour and the dough is not smooth.
Use clean hands to form the dough together to form a ball.
Cut the ball into two pieces and store one in a bowl with a cloth over top so it does not dry out.
Sprinkle your working surface with a bit of flour.
Keep the flour nearby in case your dough gets sticky you can add more on top of the dough and also on your rolling pin.
Flatten your ball down into a disc.
Use your rolling pin to roll out dough.
Push from the center and roll evenly to the edges.
Keep rolling and try to make a circle. If it is not perfect, it wont matter.
Don't overwork the crust.
Use the cookie cutter to cut out 12 circles.
Note, on your first cut, you will probably get about 6-7 circles, and then you will need to re-roll the dough and repeat.
Fill each tart with apple pie filling.
Roll out your second disc of dough and repeat the same procedure cutting out 12 circles.
To make the lattice, simple cut your small circles into 7 even slices each.
To create a pattern:
Take the shortest strip and if you are looking down at one of the tarts, place it on the left hand side vertically.
Now take the next shortest piece, and place it on the top horizontally.
Repeat this technique until your tart has a finished lattice top.
Repeat for the remaining tarts.
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
If the crusts are cooking too quickly, just tent with aluminum foil.
Place the muffin tin onto a cooling rack.
Use a small knife to cut around the outsides of the mini pies then just leave them to sit until cooled.
Remove mini pies from the muffin tin. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
Making your own crust is not as difficult as you may be lead to believe and you end up with a piecrust that has that homemade flavor. Just don't overwork the dough when you are pulling it together into a ball as it can make it tough. When you are re-rolling your dough for the second batch of circles, handle gently. Removing the tarts from the tin is likely the trickiest part. You want to be sure to let them sit for a couple minutes on the cooling rack before you run the knife around the outer edge and then don't try to remove them until they have cooled down in the pan as they are more likely to break while they are still hot. This apple tart recipe is fun to make for events like picnics, potlucks and times when it is more convenient to have individual portions prepared.
Learn MORE at Grandmother's Kitchen
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