Butter tarts are among the most quintessential of Canadian desserts. Rich and super sweet, most have too much sugar for my taste. Yet I believed that there must be butter tarts out there that have just the right amount of sweetness. And once I spied a recipe for Rhubarb Butter Tarts, I pounced.
To my one little cup of chopped rhubarb I added an equal amount of fresh Saskatoon berries (though blueberries would have been another fine match). I rolled out my tart crusts, filled them up with purple-red filling, and slid them in to the oven with high hopes. Out came the most amazing tarts!
Bubbling with buttery goodness, they are gush-worthy. O Canada, with your fine baked goods, here is my contribution to the butter tart tradition. And though the bar is set high up here, these berry rhubarb tarts can contend with the best. Make these and your mouth, wherever you are, will cheer!
Best Butter Tarts with Berries and Rhubarb
For the tart shells:
- 2 cups unbleached flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup salted butter, chilled
- 4 to 6 tablespoons cold water
For the filling:
- 1 cup rhubarb, chopped
- 1 cup Saskatoon berries or blueberries
- 1/4 cup butter, cut into small cubes
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 3 to 4 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- To make the homemade tart shells, combine dry ingredients and add butter. Blend together with a pastry blender or food processor until pea-sized bits of butter are visible throughout. Gradually add cold water until a dough forms. Cover dough and chill for 15 minutes or more. Keeping the other portion chilled, roll out half of dough on a floured surface and cut out 5-inch (12 cm) rounds. [I used a plastic lid and traced it with a butter knife.] Continue to roll out dough until twelve rounds are made.
- Preheat oven to 370 degrees F (188 C). Gently arrange circles of tart shell dough into muffin tin cups, fluting the edges. [I found I preferred the tarts baked without paper muffin liners, but you may line the cups if you wish.]
- To make the filling, soak chopped rhubarb in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain rhubarb and combine with butter cubes in a small mixing bowl. Add brown sugar and stir until sugar and butter form a paste. Add berries, maple syrup, egg, and vanilla. Stir until thoroughly combined.
- Carefully spoon filling into unbaked tart shells. Bake at 370 degrees F (188 C) for 22 minutes or until crust is golden. Allow tarts to cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before removing to a cooling rack. Serve butter tarts slightly warm or at room temperature.
These Canadian butter tarts were part of today’s Food Day Canada menu, celebrating Canadian cuisine. Also included in the meal is kohlrabi salad and lentil soup in a honey wheat bread bowl. All main ingredients were grown and produced in Canadian provinces, including Saskatchewan.
I am also sharing this recipe here.