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Friday, February 17, 2012

Neenish Tarts

A couple of weeks back I finally got around to attempting Neenish Tarts.  I cheated though – I bought the pastry shells.  In my defence it was the long weekend and I wanted to relax.  If you want to make your own pastry cases you can make some short crust pastry using this recipe, roll it out and line 12 – 18 patty tins.  Prick the bases and chill cases for about 30 minutes before baking then at 180°C for about 10 minutes or until they are golden and crisp.

500g sweet short crust pastry (see note above) or 12 store bought pastry cases

For the filling:

115g butter, softened
55g icing sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
1 tablespoon lemon juice
pinch of baking powder
1 ½ teaspoons gelatine
3 tablespoons boiling water

For the icing:

1 cup icing sugar
1 tablespoon hot water
¼ teaspoon vanilla essence
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 tablespoon butter

Making the filling:
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then mix in the vanilla essence and the baking powder.  Add the gelatine (dissolved in the boiling water), a teaspoon at a time and the lemon juice, then mix through.
Fill the cooled pastry cases with the mixture and level off the tops.  Store in a cool place until firm.

Icing and Finishing:

Put the icing sugar into a heatproof bowl, mix in 1 teaspoon of hot water and heat over simmering water until the icing softens.  Add the vanilla, then use immediately to ice one half of each tart.
Add the cocoa and butter to the remaining icing, return the bowl to the heat and stir until glossy.  Add more hot water if needed.  Ice the other half of the tarts, making more icing if needed.  Run a hot knife across each tart or use a small drop of hot water to smooth the icing if needed.



  1. Hi!
    I have just found your blog and it is great. One question though - does this recipe require baking powder as in the ingredients, or cream of tartar as listed in the instructions?
    I'm just about to give it ago so will try it with the cream of tartar :)

    1. Hi Tahlia,

      I came up with this recipe after looking at a few others - the original recipes probably suggested using cream of tartar, but I don't actually have any in my pantry so I would have changed it to baking powder.

      I've altered the recipe so it now just says 'baking powder' to avoid any more confusion. Your's will be fine with cream of tartar in them.

      Hope they turned out alright - fiddly things to make huh?!

  2. I just made these tarts and they are so good im loving your recipes:))))

  3. Hi there, you dont need either cream of tartar or baking powder or gelatine in neenish tarts.You will find that they will also taste much nicer without!

  4. Hi there! I'm curious to know which recipes you used for inspiration? I struggled to find many when I came up with my own recipe for them (www.mylittlechequeredkitchen.com/2013/03/23/neenish-tarts) and so would love to know what you found? Also for my Neenish tarts, I didn't use cream of tartar, baking powder or gelatine and so I'm wondering what your opinion is on this and why you decided to include them? Thanks! - CheqKitchen :)

    1. I can't remember what I would have used for inspiration. I normally look at a variety of sources from all over the place - internet, cookbooks, pages ripped from magazines etc.
      Most recipes I found had cream of tartar, baking powder and gelatine in them which is why I would have included them.

  5. Ladies A Plate have a similar amazing recipe for Neenish Tarts. It uses gelatine without baking powder/tartar. The firmness helps stop the filling from melting when being iced with hot icing. Having the icing hot helps it to stay smooth on top.