Enclosed Rabbit Pineapple Tarts Recipe

My enclosed rabbit pineapple tarts are perfect for celebrating the Year of the Rabbit this Chinese New Year. And you don't need a special mould to make them, either.

Last year my enclosed pineapple tarts were mahjong tile-shaped thanks to a mould I found. This year, instead of pressing my tarts into moulds, I hand-shaped them with a couple of simple tools.

The pastry of these enclosed pineapple tarts is super buttery and delicate, almost melt-in-the-mouth. It goes to well with the sweet-sharp pineapple jam.

You can make the pineapple jam a few days a head. This is often what I do, because it does take a little patience to make. And since the Lunar New Year celebrations last a few days, why not make them for the week?

Ready? Let's go.

(Makes 20 pineapple tarts.)


For the Jam:

2 medium-sized pineapples, peeled, cored and puréed
200g caster sugar
1 cinnamon stick
1 pandan leaf

For the Pastry:

125g cold unsalted butter, cubed
175g plain flour
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp custard powder
25g icing sugar

Extra plain flour, for dusting


1. In a large wok, simmer all the pineapple jam ingredients together on a low to medium heat. When it reduces by half, remove the cinnamon stick and pandan leaf, and stir often with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to stop it from sticking. Stir until you have a really thick, dough-like paste that moves almost as one mass around in the pan – this will take a couple of hours.

2. Scoop into a bowl and leave to cool completely before popping in the fridge for an hour (it'll go quite hard if you leave it in the fridge for too long, but if that happens just leave it out for a little bit before working with it).

3. Take teaspoon-sized portions of your jam and roll them into 20 balls using oiled hands.

4. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a couple of baking sheets with nonstick baking parchment.

5. Make the pastry by rubbing all the ingredients together with your fingertips, switching to a light kneading motion to make the dough come together.

6. Divide the dough into 20 portions, rolling each into a ball.

7. Take one ball of dough, pinch a little bit off and reserve (to make a tail), flatten out into a disc, and use it to wrap up a ball of jam. Using an icing ball tool or a rounded chopstick, push two 'tracks' of dough on top of the filled ball to make ears. Using the end of a paintbrush, poke two holes for eyes. Then roll the reserved 'scrap' up into a tiny ball and stick on the bunny's behind. Repeat with all 20 balls until you have 20 round 'dumplings'.

8. Bake for 10–15 minutes, or until lightly golden brown (don't bake for too long otherwise the jam inside will go gooey and the pineapple tarts will start to collapse).

9. Leave to cool completely before eating.

Enjoy, and have fun.


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