Tender buttery pastry crust, cinnamon and brown sugar soaked apples, all baked into mini tarts that will fit in the palm of your hand.
My mother in law is obsessed with all things tiny. If it comes in a miniature size, you can be guaranteed you will find it somewhere in her house. She has miniature Tupperware bowls, tiny salt and pepper shakers, miniscule measuring spoons, and itty bitty Fisher-Price toys the size of key chain bobbles just to name a few.
I’ve always kind of liked miniatures, one of my favorite museums growing up was the Toy and Miniature Museum in Kansas City. In fact, I used to build them in my free time before I had four kids. I’ve built two dollhouses and one miniature roombox. The roombox was actually a gift for my mother in law based off the design of her kitchen. I replicated everything down to the design of the wallpaper, giving it working lights and everything.
I must say this miniature obsession of hers has kind of rubbed off on me a little bit. It’s no longer just to where I think, “oh how cute.” I’ve gotten to where I say it out loud, “Oh, how teeny and precious.” So when she gave me a bag of apples from the orchard, I knew I wanted to make some tiny little apple tarts.
Not only because I like little things, I find making things in individual portions to come in handy when feeding my children. When I make something in an individual portion size I don’t ever have to worry about the, “they got more than me, their piece is bigger!” whines because everybody has their own and it’s the same size and that’s just great. It also makes it easier to notice if someone has snuck off with more than their share. (Which does happen. This time when it came to the apple tarts it was my husband sneaking off with them.)
And I love, love, love to eat these apple tarts because it’s easy to eat one and not feel guilty. It’s just a little tart, right? If, really big if, if there are any leftover, they are easy to pack into lunchboxes, take to the office and share, or wrap up and freeze to enjoy again later.
These mini apple tarts have a flaky pastry crust which is topped with a thick ring of fresh apple, then a mixture brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter. The edges are easily folded over and brushed with just enough butter to make sprinkling of sugar stay in place. Baking up into perfect single serving apple tarts.
This recipe is a great one for those little, maybe a little bit ugly, but beautifully tasty gems that you might have growing in your backyard. Just try these mini apple tarts once and I think you’ll agree that bigger isn’t always better. Sometimes tiny is just right!
- 2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup milk
- Apple Filling:
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons butter softened
- 5-6 Gala apples
- 2 Tablespoons melted butter
- 2 Tablespoons white sugar
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the cubed butter and using a pastry blender or a fork, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it is crumbly and no large chunks of butter remain. Sprinkle the vinegar over the flour mixture evenly. Then gradually add the milk to the mixture, stirring with a fork until it the dough forms a ball. (It might not require quite all the milk.) Cover the dough and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes or until the dough is easily handleable.
- In another bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter, with a fork until the butter is well blended in and the mixture is crumbly.
- Core the apples and slice into rings about ½-2/3 an inch thick. Remove the peel from the apple rings.
- Remove the dough to a floured work surface and cut into 16 equal pieces. Dusting each with flour, roll the pieces out into 5-6 inch circles.
- Heat oven to 375 degrees.
- Place one apple ring onto each circle of dough. Top each apple ring with 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Fold the edges of the dough over the apples, leaving the centers open.
- Place one inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
- Brush the outside edges of the pastry dough with the melted butter and sprinkle over it the white sugar.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and the apples are tender.
This recipe was adapted from the Taste of Home Bakeshop Favorites cookbook.