Archive for May 18th, 2009

A Prized Recipe for Egg-Free Orange Filling

May 18th, 2009 No comments

Here is our favorite recipe for orange filling.  You’ll use it often for cakes and tarts. because it is so simple and inexpensive.  And your vegan friends (or you, if you are one) will appreciate the fact that this recipe contains no eggs.  It’s important to use smallish, flavorful oranges for this one– not the big, watery kind with thick skins.  Navels are all right if the are small, or try Valencias.

Stir together in a heavy saucepan–

  • I cup sugar
  • 4 T. cornstarch
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 2 T.* grated orange rind (requires four or more small oranges)
  • 1 1/2 T. lemon juice
  • 2 T. butter or solid margarine
  • 1/2 t. salt

Stirring constantly, bring the mixture to a good, solid boil (almost “rolling”) over medium heat, and continue boiling for one minute (continuing to stir as well).  Cool the mixture before using.

*  We suggest you experiment.  Use this amount the first time.  If you want to ramp up the orange flavor the next time, try using 3 T.

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Bakewell Tarts

May 18th, 2009 No comments

These British treats are delectable, complex in flavor, and easy to make.  If you are lucky, you already have a set of the individual tart pans that you’ll need (mine are fluted and a bit more than an inch in diameter at the base and a little less than three inches at the top).

Short pastry (enough for a standard two-crust pie– recipe given below)


  • 4 oz. butter or solid margarine
  • 4 oz. fine sugar (baker’s or “caster’)
  • 4 oz. ground almonds
  • 2 well-beaten eggs
  • 1 t. almond extract
  • Seedless raspberry jam
  • White powdered sugar icing

Prepare the pastry and allow it to “rest.” Then roll it out the pastry and divide it among about 20 tart pans.  (The pastry is baked inside the fluted pans.) Pre-bake the shells for five minutes at 400 degrees.  Remove the shells from the oven, but leave them in the pans.

Now prepare the filling. Cream together the butter and sugar.  Add the eggs and almond extract and stir together.  Put one teaspoon of the jam in each tart shell and then add about two teaspoons of the filling.  Bake about 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

After the tarts have cooled a bit, you should be able to remove them easily from the pans.

Make the icing according to the directions on the powdered sugar package and spread the icing on the cooled tarts.

Short pastry for a two-crust pie or for 20 tarts

  • 2 1/4 cups pre-sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup or less of water

Stir the flour and salt together and cut in the shortening until the lumps in the mixture are, on average, pea-size.  Lightly mix in enough of the water to make the dough easy to handle.  Form it together, lightly, into a ball; cover it, and allow it to rest for at least ten minutes at room temperatire before rolling it out on a floured pastry cloth or floured waxed paper.

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