Saturday, September 3, 2011

Egg Tart from Scraps

Remember the pinwheel cookies I made a while back?  Well, the recipe stated that it made 28 cookies and scraps.  While I gave about half the cookies away, I was still stuck with what to do with the scraps.  Making more cookies seemed like taking the easy way out, when here were a couple of chunks of premade tart dough!  I love pie crust, but am usually adverse to making pies since 1) my family isn't entirely fond of syrupy cooked fruit and 2) the pie crust is usually delicate, difficult to work with and requires so much butter.  The main problem is, my family (and, as it turns out, my roommate this year) absolutely loves pie crust.  Pie crust is best when moved from fridge to oven with the least distance possible.  This ideal is completely destroyed when your roommate's tiny fridge doesn't fit your pie and you live three flights of stairs away from the oven.  This coming semester I will be lucky enough to live only two flights away.  Maybe there will be more pies this semester.

Egg Tart by trial and error

Crust adapted from My Buttery Fingers

1½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
½ cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk

1 large mixing bowl
1 sturdy butter knife
1 cup dry measure
½ cup dry measure
¼ cup dry measure
1 tablespoon measure (optional, if chocolate dough is desired)
1 teaspoon measure 
1 8" x 4" loaf pan (or any small tart pan, I imagine a 6" round would do quite nicely)
Parchment paper to line the pan


1. Mix the flour and sugar together in the large mixing bowl.  If you prefer chocolate crust, replace 2 tablespoons of the flour with 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder.  Cut the butter into cubes and toss into the bowl.  Rub quickly until the mixture forms coarse crumbs.

2. Line the loaf or tart pan with parchment paper.  If using a loaf pan, make sure the parchment paper is left sticking out of the pan on the sides to assist with removal of tart.  If using a round pan, just cut a circle of paper and use that.  

3. Back to the shortbread dough: Mix in the vanilla and egg yolk, then press the dough into the loaf or tart pan.  Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to 1 hour, until thoroughly chilled.  

4. Preheat the oven to 350°F and bake the crust for about 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, mix the filling.

Filling by trial and error (over about 10 years or so... egg tart was one of my first bakes)

1 egg
½ cup milk
2 tablespoons sugar
Less than half a ¼ teaspoon of salt (tiny, tiny amount, just to enhance the sweet flavor)

2-cup liquid measure
1 tablespoon measure
Tiny spoon or ¼ teaspoon measure
1 balloon whisk or rubber spatula


1. Crack the egg into the measuring cup and whisk or beat until thoroughly scrambled.  Add the milk to make about ¾ cup of liquid (around a ½ cup of milk).  Add the sugar and salt and mix until all is relatively homogenous and dissolved.

The cute whisk my boyfriend gave me for Christmas.  It mixes well without incorporating too much air, perfect for a smooth liquid recipe like this one.  Too many bubbles will mar the surface of the custard.

2. Bring the measuring cup of egg tart filling to the oven.  When the timer rings for the crust, carefully open the oven and pour the filling into the crust.  This will help prevent spillage of filling and ease removal of the tart.

Parchment paper is a beautiful thing.
3. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.  Enjoy!

A new take on an old tradition.


I actually just used the scraps from my pinwheel cookies, which is why I have a striped dough.  My dad called it the leftover tart.  You may have a very thick crust if you use all of the dough for this recipe.  Just make another tart or a bigger one.  Double or triple the filling amount accordingly.  If you do so, the filling may not all fit into the measuring cup.  You all have common sense, get a mixing bowl and a whisk.


  1. The egg tart you made was really good! A bit sweeter than the egg tarts I get from those Asian bakeries, but that's fine :) I just wish there was more of the eggy part - the ratio of the tart was more doughy than eggy but overall, good job! :D


  2. My first comment! I'm so excited! I think the extra sweetness comes from the crust, since I used a cookie dough instead of a real pastry/pie crust. And I agree. Next time, the crusts will be thinner for sure, now that we know the crust is sturdy enough to be popped out. The other thing is that I guess they only come out of the tin easily when they're warm. Once they cool, they vacuum-stick to the pan like nobody's business.