Caramelized Butter Tarts

Total Time:
40 min
15 min
25 min

18 (1 1/2-inch) tarts

  • 12 ounces all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 4 drops vanilla extract
  • 9 ounces butter
  • 4 ounces eggs
  • 4 teaspoons water
  • Filling:
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups raisins
  • 1 vanilla bean
Watch how to make this recipe.
  • Combine the flour, salt, and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add the lemon zest and vanilla. Cut in the butter and mix until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Add the eggs and water and mix until combined. Divide the dough into 18 pieces and roll each into a circle. Press the dough into tart pans.

  • Filling:

  • Melt the butter, brown sugar and milk in saucepan and stir until the sugar starts to dissolve.

  • Take the pan off the heat and whisk in the egg and raisins.

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

  • Bake the tart crusts for 12 minutes. Divide the filling among the tarts and bake until bubbly, about 5 minutes.

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3.1 39
So, they are tasty, but the recipe is indeed a bit wacko. We have made them for a party 3 times (in mini-muffin size, with some adjustments. One thing to note - if you overfill, or even if you don't, the caramel will make cement and stick to the pan. Here's the secret we figured out - they are sturdy enough to be removed straight out of the oven, and they come out easily when hot. We use a plastic knife and spoon to get them out of the nonstick pan. If they start to stick, put them back in the hot oven for a minute or two, it will make the caramel release. Note that when we add the eggs to the syrup that has "cooled off for a few seconds" after bubbling, it makes egg drop soup. Even tried tempering but still got scrambled eggs. Strained the sauce and the final product was good. We like these, but think that the designation "easy" is really misleading. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I am rating this four stars thanks to those of you who went before me and provided tips about the recipe. I cheated and used prepared pie crust and it worked well. More raisins and plumping them first is a must! The warm buttery brown sugar goodness is just what I was looking for. It may not be the best thing I ever ate but it was pretty darn good. item not reviewed by moderator and published
As an experienced baker of 35 yrs. this recipe is "awful". I read the other posts before attempting seeing the actual recipe is not written right. For instance the use of "ounces" in eggs called for and the amount of raisins used on TV vs. the written one and leaving out the need to "soak" them first. But even after adjusting everything according to what I felt was "correct" these involve way too much work vs. the "reward". They aren't something that can be stored easily either for the holidays. TIPS: Best when eaten "warm". Use 3 eggs vs. the 4 ounces listed and "CHILL" your dough before attempting to form it into your tart pans. I also simmered my raisins for a few min. in a pot with the water and a cinnamon stick, a vanilla bean & a little rum. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was a good recipe but I steeped the raisins in spiced rum with a whole cinnamon stick and a few whole cloves. Brilliant! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I just watched the show this morning and decided to try before X-mas.. The recipe here states 1/2 cup raisins, on the show he said 2 cups of raisins....and they need to be steeped for a while then drained..also you can make a regular pie crust dough that has a egg yolk in the recipe..or the cream cheese pastry dough that's used for pecan tarts.. I loved this recipe. If you like raisins it is delicious..ans I will make again. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Just made them and the reviews from the family are GREAT. I did not make my own pie crust. Instead, I opted for pre-made frozen tart shells. Pre cooked the shells for about 10 min, then filled them. The family says they would like more raisins the next time. This is a great treat! Satisfying to the sweet tooth. A++++ item not reviewed by moderator and published
These were horrible. I'm a pretty good baker and nothing worked. They stuck to the "non-stick pan". There's a ton of butter in them so they shouldn't have but they did. They didn't carmelize either. Don't waste your time. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Definitely read previous reviews before making this recipe. The recipe is not very well written; fortunately it's a pretty easy treat to make. I used a food processor to bring the dough together. I also plumped the raisins, doubled them, and docked the pastries once they were in the tins. My cooking time tracked with the written recipe, but I was using the convection feature on my oven which cooks everything more quickly than regular bake. Don't know if I'll make these again. They were pretty good, but nothing I'd stand in line for. item not reviewed by moderator and published
All I know is I followed this recipie exactly the way it said to. I know nothing about baking so I just followed the recipie my tarts came out horrible I had to throw them all away nobody liked them :-( my bad that I didnt try the recipie prior to christmas eve I just watched the show again on demand and the cheff said to steep the raisins in warm water,, in the recipie above it said nothing about steeping the raisins.. and he also said to use 2 cups of raisins, the recipie above said 1/2 cup of raisins. hoestly I agree with one the posters i dont think they want to give away the true family recipie... I also should of read the reviews befor trying the recipie again my bad, i know for next time. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I just made them. I used the pre-made pillsbury crust. I used a metal 1 cup measurer to cut out dough and got 18 from both crusts (there was some left over). I formed them into cupcake pans. Worked fine. I did poke with a fork to prevent dough from puffing. I used a full cup of rainsins and cranberries mixed (i plumped them in boiling water a few minutes first). I only used 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract with was fine for me. Turned out great. THe dogh recipe may be better than the bought but I was in a hurry. Great taste! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I've altered the pastry part of this recipe and it came out perfectly. Pastry 3 cups all purpose flour 2 whole eggs + 1 egg yolk 1 tsp. vanilla extract 16 tbsp. unsalted butter 1 tsp. salt zest of 1 whole lemon 4 tsp. water 1 1/2 tsp sugar Divide dough into 3 equal parts and roll each piece between 2 sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap. Don't use any extra flour or the pastry becomes tough. Place into tart tins and bake at 350 degree oven until the tart shells are browned. No need to worry if the shells puff up a bit the filling flattens them back out again. Follow the filling recipe as posted. These will come out perfectly. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is a silly recipe. Butter Tarts are Canadian. And what's with the weird measurements? Eggs in oz? This is just silly. Check out a real recipe for butter tarts here: joyofbaking dot com slash ButterTarts.html Sheesh. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I thought these were pretty good. My whole family was intrigued when we saw Beau make them on TV last night, so I made them this morning. They pretty much taste like pecan pie with raisins instead of pecans. I made half with walnuts. They are SO EASY that I will probably try some other versions later - maybe with brandy soaked cherries! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Well, mine were undercooked. I cooked the dough alone 12 minutes, put in the filling and cooked for another 5 just as directed and it was far from done! I put it in another 3 minutes and took it out. I needed to cook it a lot longer. The ingredient amounts were really confusing, thanks to the reviewer who posted the amounts in cups, etc.! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Canadian Butter Tart? Hmmmm, I haven't made this, but it looks like a copy of a Canadian Butter Tart recipe. Check out The Joy of Cooking for a proper Canadian Butter Tart. That's the tart I make every Christmas and I'm Canadian! Absolutely Delicious! You may substitute store bought pastry dough if you're in a hurry. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I tried these for the first time today. They are DELICIOUS! I followed many of the suggestions from others' reviews. The lemon zest in the crust adds a depth of flavor you couldn't easily get with store bought pastry. Bake the crusts the 12 minutes the instructions indicate and then fill them only about 2/3 full and return them to the oven. I can only imagine getting away with 5 more minutes in the oven if you filling is still very hot from its preparation. If it has cooled then you will need at least 10-15 minutes if you want it to set up well. I also think you could easily double the amount of raisins while keeping the rest of the filling ingredients the same. I used vanilla extract instead of the bean as others did and added the extra egg yoke to the dough as one suggested. All in all I think they turned out great and they will become my neighborhood holiday gifts this year. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Sheesh you can only post one review! Pastry 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour 2 whole eggs + 1 egg yolk 4 drops vanilla extract 16 tbsp. unsalted butter 1 tsp. salt 1 1/2 tsp. lemon zest 4 tsp. water 1 1/2 tsp sugar Filling 1/3 cup butter 1 cup brown sugar 2 tbsp. milk 1 egg 1/2 cup raisins or craisins 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans (optional 1 tsp. vanilla item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this recipe just today after I saw it being made on the show. I'm happy that I added it to my holiday baking repertoire because they are FANTASTIC! I did follow the advice of some of the other posters about using Crasins and using premade croissant dough (which yields about 10-12 tarts per can of dough. I also wanted to tell you not to be alarmed by the crust puffing up when you bake it by itself. It is soft enough to remold back into the tins for the filling. I baked the crust for about 10 minutes, then 15 minutes after adding the filling for proper caramelization. I'd like to make the crust dough from scratch as the recipe calls for when I have the time, although it seems like the people that got the best results were those that brought the dough premade. All in all a great little treat that I (and everyone else that tried it! love. Happy Holidays everyone!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
too much salt in the pastry, not enough raisins. also the measurements were scary. so I ended up with lots of little pastry cups, only 1/3 of them filled. but the filling is DEE Lish. I am going to try again, now that I have read the reviews and gotten some suggestions for measurements and adjustments. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe was a tad too buttery for me. The filling was very tasty and I was very tempted to just eat it by itself! Although very tasty, this recipe was very misleading. It showed many measurements that were unclear to me. The tarts were too buttery. The ratio of butter to flour was astounding. We would of made this recipes completely wrong if it wasnt for another person who rated this. Thank you to that writer and whoever wrote this needs to think about adding some minor modifications to the recipe item not reviewed by moderator and published
After reading the reviews on these I followed the advice here but used Whole wheat flour and more raisens. I did bake the tarts first then put in the filling and baked some more for about 10 minutes. These turned out great and I certainly can see that they are addicting. The recipe is not written well, but it looks like a professional pastery chef wrote it, not someone use to cooking at home. But thanks to someone translating the recipe here for everyone, I found them simple to make a delicious. item not reviewed by moderator and published
These little chunks of goodness are out of this world. I had to make some adjustments however, because I couldn't get to the store. Intead of vanilla extract and vanilla bean I used almond extract (a capful in the dough and a teaspoon in the filling). Also I substituted Crasins for Rasins. On a preparation note: I should have hand pressed into the tart mold instead of using a small round dough press. That left the sides more prone to inflate in and not leave enough room for filling. If filling gets all over the top of the tart pan all the better! Just fold it up on top of the tart or mold around the sides. YUM! Jack in Indianapolis (and his little puggle Dexter) item not reviewed by moderator and published
The recipe, at least for me was really easy to follow... but I do realize that it might be confusing because of the usage of both weights and volume measurements, just take note of that. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Well I just tried to make these Butter Tarts, and my oven became a Butter River! Yes, I was confused with the measurements. I only used 1 1/2 cups of flour. What a disaster and not to mention a waste of money. I had to throw out the dough. I did think when I was making them, boy this is alot of butter to flour ratio. I just wish I would of looked at these posts before I tried to make the recipe. The person who graciously put on the equivalents for these ingredients , ie. the butter, flour, and eggs, I am grateful to you. I just wish the chef who put this recipe on Foodnetwork would of taken into consideration that most home cooks use cups, when measuring dry ingredients. I will try this again. Thank you item not reviewed by moderator and published
I just made these. I used Pillsbury croissant dough and rolled it out and cut it into 8 squares instead of making my own dough. I also added crushed pecans, added a touch of caramel, and used craisins instead of raisins. I also drizzled caramel on top after cool. Delicious! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have not tried this recipe but thought it does not make enough. If I am going to go to the trouble of making this recipe, I make a lot. Butter Tarts are Canadian and everyone thinks theirs is the best. My husband's gramma(11 kids never made a dozen of anything and her recipe rocks. It routinely wins prizes. Here is a link for it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
The best thing I ever ate. We grew up with them from Forest Canada and these are just as good if not better. I am glad I saw your show. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Yes, directions are sketchy at best. It does say to bake the tart shells for 12 minutes prior to filling (cook with filing for 5 minutes, which is too short.) Assume one should also dock the bottoms before baking to keeping from puffing up. Also, I substituted 1 teaspoon of vanilla for the mystery vanilla bean. I know the chef said the recipe was from his mom. Perhaps she didn't want to share all of the ingredients? item not reviewed by moderator and published
I haven't cooked these yet so my rating does not reflect the outcome. I really want to make these but the directions weren't clear. I read all the reviews and have figured everything out except one I cook the crust without the filling first for like 10 minutes and then go back and add the filling and finish cooking it the rest of the time? Or do I put the filling in the raw crust and let the whole thing cook for the whole 10 to 15 minutes? Anyone know? item not reviewed by moderator and published
For everyone who is having trouble with the measurements; the flour, butter and eggs are listed by weight. Twelve ounces of flour is 3/4 lbs = approximately 2.25 cups. A stick of butter is 4 ounces = 8 tablespoons, so you'll need 2.25 sticks! I found that two large eggs = 4 ounces, but your eggs may be slightly larger or smaller than mine. I'd also suggest that you nevermind about the vanilla bean. I mean, I assume that it's supposed to go into the filling while it's heating in the pan and not into one of the tarts so it only adds a little bit of flavor. Just add a few drops of vanilla if you want the flavor:*) item not reviewed by moderator and published
Just a thought, for the tarts why not try pre-made pie crust from the store? It comes with 2 in the pack, i'm thinking you could get 18 tarts out of that. Quicker too. Pretty sure i've made an onion tart recipe that way. Puff Pastry sounds really yummy! Either way I hope they're good! item not reviewed by moderator and published
The recipe is not clear. What do you do with the vanilla bean? How can I make this recipe if I do not know what to do with the ingrediants??? Now that I purchased everything...thanks alot. These recipes should be reviewed and checked before posting. item not reviewed by moderator and published
the directions are definately not clear. i wasn't a big fan of the crust recipe...kinda salty. i really liked the filling. if i make these again i think a " butter cookie" crust would be better.... or maybe a puffed pastry dough item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made these for a pot luck @ work and everyone loved them. It was easy to do. i made the dough and rolled them out placing each indiviual tart inbetween cling film a day ahead and stored it in the ice box. the recipe made 18 tarts and clearly it was not enough for my co-workers who all wanted the recipe. 4oz. is 2 eggs or you can use a carton of egg beaters to measure out your egg. Dividing the dough was not tough @ all since the dough was smooth and pliable I just made a mound divided it in half and kept dividing the dough till i had approx. 18 pieces. I dont have fancy measuring devices so i just did the best i could. They still turned out great. Certainly a home spun recipe that gob smackd the crowd. Thank you Beau. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Beau can you say "Mise en place" What do I do with the vanilla bean? item not reviewed by moderator and published
I agree. This recipe is not clear. We are in the US. How many eggs are in 4 ounces ? item not reviewed by moderator and published
what do you do with the vanilla bean (the filling ? also - I just weigh the mass of dough- get the ol calculator out- divide by 18 and weigh out each piece. i have to enter a rating - (cornputer prompt - i haven't made them yet and am kinda bummed about the incomplete recipe (vanilla bean- they are REALLY spendy and I don't want to bolix this up so will for now... rate it blindly item not reviewed by moderator and published
The recipe calls for 4 ounces of eggs. What does that mean? item not reviewed by moderator and published
Divide the dough into 18 pieces? Are you kidding me? There must be an easier way! How big should the pieces be? How thick? Poor instructions here, Beau. I want to make them but they look like too much trouble to me. item not reviewed by moderator and published

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