How to Make Jam Tarts

Traditional jam tarts are enjoying a revival. And why not? They’re an essential component of the classic afternoon tea, and easy enough for children to make. Follow our step-by-step recipe to make your own jam tarts.

Make Traditional Jam Tarts

Keep the kitchen and ingredients cool to ensure your Pastry turns out nice and flaky. Open a window and, whenever the ingredients start to get warm, put the bowl in the freezer for a few minutes. One more important note – don’t try to work the butter into the flour too much. Some larger pieces will give your pastry that airy texture, sure to get compliments!

This Recipe Makes 24-36 Small Tarts – You Need:
  • 200g (7oz) plain flour
  • Generous pinch of salt
  • 100g (4oz)unsalted butter
  • 25g (1oz) caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • Cold water, in a cup, with an ice-cube dropped in
  • Jam – any flavour

Before you begin, weigh out the butter, cut it into small pieces and transfer to the freezer for ten minutes. Half-fill a cup with water and add a couple of ice-cubes.

Now sift the flour into a large bowl and add the salt. Drop in the butter pieces and use a pastry cutter to break the butter down to large breadcrumb-sized pieces. (If you don’t have a pastry cutter, you can use cold fingers or a food processor – pulse briefly until the mixture is sandy with some lumps.)

Stir the sugar into the sandy mix and make a well in the middle, then pour in the egg yolk and 1-2tbsp cold water. Bring it together carefully with a wooden spoon or a flat knife. Add more water, little by little, until the mixture shows signs of coming together to form a dough. Gather the scraps and pat the dough into two rounds, wrap, and put into the fridge for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 190ºC (or 180ºC for a fan oven). Roll the pastry out to a thickness of about ½ cm and cut rounds slightly larger than the indents in your tartlet tray. Press the pastry very gently to ease it into the indents, then prick the base of each one with a fork. (You can also roll out one large round and make a big tart with streusel topping – see below – this will need a bit longer in the oven.) Put into the hot oven for about 12-15 minutes or until the pastry is just golden. While the tarts are still warm, spoon between 1 and 1 1/2 tsp of Jam into each one, switch off the oven, and put the tray back in for a few minutes to let the jam melt slightly and settle. Be careful to cool before serving. The tarts will keep for 5 days in an airtight tin.

Streusel Topping

Here’s an optional extra for your tarts – a crunchy almond Streusel topping that’s perfect with sharp raspberry jam.

You Will Need:
  • 75g (3oz) plain flour
  • 50g (2oz) caster sugar
  • 50g (2oz) flaked almonds, roughly chopped
  • 75g (3oz) unsalted butter

Put the flour, sugar and butter into a bowl and use a knife to cut the butter through the mixture. Use your fingers to rub the butter in a bit more – until it’s the texture of coarse sand. Stir in the chopped almonds. Make the tart cases as above, but fill the cases with about 1/2tsp of jam each (to come halfway up the tart), as the jam bubbles up during baking. Sprinkle the streusel topping over your jam tarts before baking at 190 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until golden.

Tasty Tarts

Looking for more tart ideas? Try our Traditional Treacle Tart recipe or the mouthwatering Tarte Tartin.

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