Pecan Tarts….a metaphor for life?

Mood: Gaining some clarity.

In the air : Adele – Take it all –
Adele – Turning tables –
Cee Lo Green – F**K You –                                           

Remember that line from Forest Gump, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get”? Well, I think life is like a pecan tart. At least my life is.

Sometimes life is hard, crusty and it falls apart like the shell but sometimes it has its sweet and nutty moments like the filling but in the end you realize it is just big gooey albeit yummy mess. Once you’re done, all you can do is wash your hands and move on.

Pecan tarts are a 2 step process.  First step is to make the tart shells.  The crust on these pecan tarts is a standard crust made with shortening, butter, flour, salt and water.  Let me re-iterate that I suck when it comes to making dough and I don’t appear to be getting better.  My dough was soft but very crumbly and I could not roll it out without it breaking apart.  Frustration began to set in but I refused to let this dough go to waste.  I was not able to roll it out to fit the tart forms so instead I rolled the dough into balls and molded them by hand into muffin tins instead.  I then set them in the fridge to chill while I worked on part 2. 

Now time to make the filling.  The filling was made with butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla and eggs.  I mixed the butter, brown sugar and corn syrup over a double boiler just until the butter was melted.  I let it cool for a few minutes then mixed in 2 beaten eggs and vanilla.  This mixture was then poured into the tart shells.  Before placing the tarts into the oven, I sprinkled pecans on top of each.

The tarts were placed in the oven to bake for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  I watched the filling bubble and I could smell sweetness in the air as they baked.  My only issue was that the crust was not turning as golden a hue as I had hoped.  Even the last-minute egg wash I completed did not help. 

As soon as I took them out of the oven, I placed them back in the fridge to set for 2 hours.  I was still very disappointed in the tart crust and lack of colour but how did they taste?  Damn sweet!  The filling was a good consistency, not too runny and the pecans had a nice contrasting crunch.  I suppose it made up for my lackluster crust.  I definitely will need to practice these again.