Growing up my mom made these little pastries, called Mexican Tea Tassies. I thought they were the most amazing little morsels of goodness one could ever eat. They were usually made for special occasions or her “Pan Group”.
When I started cooking on my own and discovered cooking magazines like Cooks Illustrated, Food and Wine, Gourmet, Bon Appetite, and Saveur, I was introduced to a world of options. However, about 20 years ago, I found a similar recipe in Cooking Light Magaizne and I had to try it.
It wasn’t nearly as good as my mom’s original(dry, dull pastry and not sweet), so I stuck with hers. Then, years later, I bought my first copy of Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Christmas Cookie Book. In that book, she had something similar. Over the years I have combined my mom’s and Rose’s and have come up with my own.
This past weekend, I made desserts for 40 for a fund raising event. Along with these pecan tassies, I also made mini chocolate cheesecakes and mini lemon bundt cakes (posts to follow). I had some pate brisee in the freezer and rather than making a fresh batch of dough, I used what I had on hand. Usually, I make a cream cheese crust for these, which I have to say are somewhat hard to roll out.
After I delivered the goodies, I came home to three very curious boys. They asked if the left over sweets, sitting on top of the kitchen counter, were for them. How could I bake all morning and leave nothing behind? Isaac rated these 999 out of a 1,000. I will take that as a pretty good rating!
pastry dough-use your favorite
1/2 cup Lyle’s Golden Syrup
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 Tbls. unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
dash of salt
3/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped
• spray muffin tins or mini tart pans with cooking spray.
• roll out pastry to 1/8″ thick. then use a round cookie cutter, slightly bigger than your muffin cup and cut out the shapes
• shape pastry in small muffin cups or small tart pans. I like to freeze these for an hour or so prior to baking. Blind bake these for 8 minutes in a 350* oven. Let cool.
• combine all ingredients, except for the nuts.
• divide nuts, evenly in each partially baked tart shell.
• fill each cup up 3/4 full.
• bake in a preheated 350* oven for 20 minutes.
let cool, then pop them out of the tart pans. don’t eat them all in one sitting