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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Tahitian Vanilla and Lemon Creme Fruit Tartlettes

Mini desserts are all the rage and these delightful tarts are sweet, tangy, fruity and cute to boot!

Strawberry, Mandarin Orange, Blueberries
Kiwi, Blueberries, Mandarin Orange
Blackberry, Strawberry, Kiwi
Play around with the filling and use your favorite fruits.  

Shortbread Tart Shells (go ahead and cheat - store bought are just as delish)
** Recipe yields 36-40 tarts so purchase accordingly
8 oz. Cream Cheese (reduced fat works well)
14 oz.  Sweetened Condensed Milk
3 Lemons - zest of one lemon and juice  = 1/3 of a cup
1 tablespoon Vanilla Extract 
1/2 -1 teaspoon Tahitian Vanilla dried seeds
1/2 cup Apricot Jam

Using a mixer or food processor, beat the cream cheese until creamy and smooth.   It helps to have your cream cheese at room temperature.  Add in the condensed milk, lemon juice, lemon zest, vanilla extract and vanilla beans.  Don't over mix - you don't want this to be too runny!

Line your tarts up and start filling assembly line style!  Spoon 1 teaspoon of filling into each tart and top with different combinations of fruit.  

In a saucepan, heat the jam and a splash of water.  Stir until jam is completely dissolved.  Using a pastry brush, gently brush the top of the tart with the apricot glaze making sure to completely cover all of the fruit.  This will not only give it that professional looking, glossy, pretty shine, but this step will also ensure that your tart doesn't dry out!  Fun tip huh?   

Pop these in the fridge for 30 minutes to1 hour to set up.  Serve at room temperature on the same day if possible.  They tend to get a bit soft with the filling after 8-10 hours.

Happy Cooking and Happy Styling!

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