Blueberries are one of those fruits that I will pretty much never eat ‘raw’. The texture just really puts me off! But in muffins? Pancakes?! Even pies! I loveee it. There’s something really beautiful about how the colour of the blueberries change when they’re cooked to a gorgeous deep magenta. And they taste great too! None of that slightly furry yet rubbery exterior I hate so much.
With all this in mind, I bought some mini tart tins this week and the first idea I had was little blueberry crumble tarts. Crisp slightly sweet pastry, set against a tangy jammy filling, topped with crunchy buttery crumble. Served warm of course! Well, as you can imagine, I got baking straight away.
I halved my usual pastry recipe to make these little tarts, and gave them ample chilling time even though they’re smaller. I wanted to make sure the pastry wouldn’t shrink at all in the oven, and spill out any of the gorgeous blueberry filling.
My pastry recipe is really foolproof – it holds up well to a re-roll if needed, and any ‘patchwork’ you need to do i.e filling any tears/gaps with dough! But my top two tips for pastry dough are:
- Don’t handle it too much! You want to add just enough water for it to hold together – pour a little at a time, you can always add but you can’t take away.
- Flatten the dough when chilling! Don’t put it into the fridge in a ball – you’re going to make it impossible for yourself to roll out. Instead flatten it into a disc for circular tarts or a rectangle/square for rectangular or square tarts.
Both tips seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how small things like that can make a huge difference.
The filling is super simple, and should only be on the hob for around 5-7 minutes. This will help to retain some texture in your filling, as not all of the blueberries will have broken down. You could even add in some more fresh blueberries once cooled, to add some more bite if you wanted.
Once you’ve taken this off the hob, I recommend pouring the filling out onto a plate or large bowl. This will help the filling to cool down quicker, as its over a larger surface area. And away from the hot pan!
The crumble is our last step and super simple. You want to rub the butter into the sugar and flour, but not all the way. I.e. we want there to be some larger lumps of butter left as well as ‘breadcrumb’ style crumbs. This will give different textures to the crumble, and make it all the more delicious.
I really hope you enjoy these! Let me know if you give them a try.
Blueberry Crumble Tarts
- 200 g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 100 g unsalted butter chilled and cubed
- 40-65 ml ice cold water
- 380 g fresh blueberries
- 100 g caster sugar
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 25 g cornflour
- 60 g unsalted butter room temperature
- 40 g light muscovado sugar
- 75 g plain flour
- For the pastry: Mix together the flour, salt and caster sugar in a bowl. Then using your hands, rub in the cold butter until it resembles breadcrumbs. Slowly pour in the water and mix until it forms a rough dough. (You may not need all the water). Pour out onto a lightly floured worksurface and knead briefly until a dough forms. Flatten into a disc, wrap in clingfilm and leave to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- For the filling: In a medium saucepan add the blueberries, caster sugar and lemon zest and place over a medium-low heat. In a separate bowl combine the lemon juice and cornflour.
- Stir the blueberry often until the juices begin to release, then add in the cornflour/lemon mix and increase the heat slightly. Stir often so the mixture doesn’t catch until thickened and jammy but with some blueberries remaining intact. Pour onto a plate or bowl to cool to room temperature.
- Take the chilled dough from the fridge, and roll out on a lightly floured work surface until about 3mm thick. Cut into four sections, and line your tart tins, making sure to press the dough into the edges. Then place the tart tins back into the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas Mark 6 and place a baking tray inside to heat.
- For the crumble: Add the softened butter, light muscovado sugar and flour into a bowl and rub together with your hands. You want to leave some lumps of butter intact, so you have a mixture of larger and ‘breadcrumb’ style crumbs. Then set aside.
- Take the chilled tart tins out of the fridge, and evenly fill with the cooled blueberry filling and top with the crumble. Carefully remove the hot baking tray from the oven, place the tart tins on to it and return to the oven to bake for 25-30 minutes. If the crumble is starting to brown too quickly – place some foil over the top of each.
- Leave to cool in their tins for at least 15 minutes, then carefully remove them. Serve warm.