Fresh Sour Cherry Tartlets
1 1/2 pounds (4 cups) pitted fresh sour cherries
1/4 cup red wine
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
2 tablespoons butter
Pastry for a 12 muffin pan (2 pie crusts)
Combine sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt in a sauce pan. Gradually add red wine and cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring constantly. Add cherries and butter, cook for another 5 minutes. Cool slightly. Stir in almond extract. Roll out pastry into a large rectangle. Cut into 4 inch squares. Line each muffin cup with pastry, leaving the corners of each square standing up like flower petals. Fill each cup with cherry mixture. Bake in preheated hot oven (350 F.) for about 30 minutes, until crust is golden.
4 to five tablespoons flour or 3 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca may be used as the thickening agent, instead of the cornstarch. Sweet cherries can be substituted for sour cherries. Add 1 teaspoon citric acid to the fruit.
A puff pastry crust makes a nice alternative for pie pastry.
For one 9 inch crust, double the amount of ingredients when making Sour Cherry Tartlets
2 cups sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter
1 egg yolk with 3 tablespoon cold water
Mix flour and salt, cut in butter with pastry blender of fork until the bits of butter is the size of rice. Sprinkle with the egg yolk and water mixture, a little at a time, stirring with a fork until the entire mixture is moist. Press into a ball; handle as little as possible; chill for 10 minutes. Roll pastry 1/8 inch thick. Makes 1 – 9 inch crust.