My mother bakes awesomely delicious Pineapple Tarts (Bánh Dứa) and that is one of the highlights Traditional Vietnamese Food whenever we go back home for Lunar New Year. Pineapple tarts take up lots of hours to make as there is the cooking of pineapple jam (which can take hours) and preparation of pastry followed by baking. Usually, my mother will make the pineapple jam in advance and keep it in the fridge until needed.
Unlike some poor tasting recipes, my mother’s pineapple tarts have a nice buttery smell pastry which melts in the mouth. Here is also one of my favorite Traditional Vietnamese Food. It does not crumble in your hands, yet it nicely disintegrates when savored. Over here, I only managed to get the recipe for the pastry and will put up the recipe for the pineapple jame and baking time when I get my hands on her secrets. If you have been baking pineapple tarts, try this pastry recipe for a change.
Sift the flour and add in the castor sugar. Using the pointed ends of a fork, rub the butter into the flour until it looked like fine bread crumbs. If necessary, use fingertips to continue rubbing lightly the bigger pieces into finer pieces. Add egg yolks and cold water at the same time and lightly combine them using finger tips (rather than kneading them like bread dough) before rolling out to desired thickness between baking / greased paper. (The fork and fingertip technique is what makes the pastry special). Use mound to shape tarts. Lightly dust the pastry and mound with flour before cutting with the mound.Roll a small amount of jam into a ball. Press the ball of jam onto the tart pastry. I bet you will fall in love from the first time tasting this Traditional Vietnamese Food.
For baking, bake using Gas Mark 3 (160 degrees Celsius / 325 degrees Fahrenheit) for 20 minutes. When placing jam onto the pastry, take caution not to smear jam onto the sides as this will easily “burn” and render the sides of the pastry (the flowery design) darker.
Happy Lunar New Year and enjoy your holiday with friends and family. Do not miss this Traditional Vietnamese Food when you have a chance to visit our beautiful country, especially in Tet Holiday.