Fruit & nut caramel tarts
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Fruit & nut caramel tarts

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Serves 1 - 8 Tartlets

Luscious tarts, wonderful with whipped cream; great at christmas.

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  • For the pastry (or buy ready made sweet pastry)
  • 110g butter
  • 200g plain flour
  • 80g castor sugar
  • 25g ground almonds
  • 1 large egg
  • For the filling
  • 210g granulated or castor sugar
  • 60ml double cream
  • 50g butter
  • 300g mixed dried fruit & nuts (I used cranberries, mixed peel, sultanas, almonds, hazlenuts & walnuts)
  • 8 x 10cm loose bottomed tart tins


    1. Make the pastry: Put flour into a bowl and add the butter, chop it up a bit with a knife once its in the bowl and then rub in until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
    2. Add the sugar and almonds and mix.
    3. Add the beaten egg; use a knife to mix, then use your hands until it forms a ball. (if necessary add a little milk) Cover with cling film and chill pastry in the fridge for 10 to 20 mins.
    4. Grease the tart tins and cut out baking parchment circles big enough to hold beans for 'blind baking'
    5. Cut pastry ball in half and replace half in the fridge while you work the rest. Roll out pastry to about 5mm and line 4 tart tins. Prick the bottom with a sharp knife and put them in the fridge while you work with the rest of the pastry. (I can get 10 tarts from this amount of pastry) Set oven to 170C / 160C fan / Gas 3. Leave pastry cases in the fridge while the oven heats up. (5 - 10 mins)
    6. Line pastry cases with baking parchment, fill with baking beans and bake 'blind' for 10 mins. Then remove from oven, take out the beans and paper and bake the cases for another 10 mins until golden brown.
    7. Make the caramel. Put the sugar in a heavy based pan with 4 tablespoons of water. Only stir once, before putting this onto the heat. Then bring to the boil, watching like a hawk until it turns a golden caramel colour. DO NOT STIR as this make it crystalise and you will get grainy fudge instead of smooth caramel! As soon as it turns golden brown (and you will smell a lovely caramel) remove the pan from the heat and add the cream. It will splutter - be prepared! I sometimes put the pan into a sink with a couple of inches of cold water in to help cool it down. You can stir once the cream is added and then add butter and continue to stir. Once this has cooled slightly, add to fruit and nuts.
    8. Divide the filling between the cases and chill them in the fridge for 30 mins. Serve with a dollop of thick double cream.

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