Without really thinking about what I was going to do with it, I pulled a store-bought rolled pie crust out of the freezer and let it thaw. At dinner time, I had to decide what to make with the pie crust, and though I have a lot of apples, I really didn’t feel like making apple pie. So I decided to make individual pastry tarts instead. They’re really easy, and would be even easier if you have a square sheet of dough, or at least a sheet that holds together. I love Trader Joe’s products, and I’m really glad their frozen pie crust doesn’t have any hydrogenated oils, but I wish it wouldn’t unroll in pieces. If that does happen to you, just leave the dough sandwiched in the wax paper and push the pieces close together, then roll a rolling pin over the wax paper to fuse the pieces together again.
Easy Jam Pastry Tarts
1 pre-made pie crust
1/2 cup jam (I used strawberry, but use whatever you have on hand)
2 tablespoons heavy cream, half & half, milk, or egg wash
2 tablespoons turbinado or other coarse sugar
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Roll out the pie crust and use a pizza cutter to divide the dough into eight even pieces. Since my pie crust was round, I cut it into triangles, but rectangles would look lovely and might be easier to work with.
3. On one side of each piece of dough, put 1 tablespoon of jam. Be sure to leave room at the edge for the crust to seal.
4. Fold each piece of dough in half, covering the jam. Taking care not to squeeze the jam out, press the edges together. Press the tines of a fork along the edges to seal the tarts.
5. Place tarts on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the tops with cream or your preferred liquid (use what you have on hand). Sprinkle the tops with sugar.
6. Bake the tarts for 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool at least a little before serving, as the jam will be dangerously hot when you first remove the tarts from the oven.
Note: I baked these in two batches in my toaster oven. They were better fresh, but the toasted leftovers made for a tasty breakfast the next morning. I think the baked pastries would freeze nicely, but I recommend making sure your dough is on the thicker side to prevent cracking.
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