With Chinese New Year in full swing, I really am beginning to feel the festive vibe here in Melbourne. As I am not home this year in Malaysia celebrating with my family, I decided remedy my homesickness by making my childhood’s favourite New Year sweet treat, the Pineapple tart. These buttery biscuits are so ADDICTIVE! If you are anything like me and love a good buttery anything, these will not last long.
The pineapple tart is a very popular biscuit which consists of a simple but delicious buttery biscuit encasing a delicious golden centre of pineapple jam. Growing up in Malaysia, almost every household would have a version of the pineapple tarts on offer during the festive season.
Every Chinese New Year, my family and I would return to my mother’s home state, the beautiful and historic city of Malacca. We would get so excited about the delicious food we were about to have and in particular, the pineapple tarts. A common dialect spoken in Malacca is Hokkien, and in this dialect these tarts are called “Ong Lai” which directly translates as “Prosperity is Coming”. The golden colour of these buttery treats also resembles gold nuggets which once again is tied into well wishes of wealth and prosperity.
These tarts come in all shapes and sizes and whilst the ingredients are essentially the same, the creativity is left to the maker of these biscuits. As we had just moved into our new apartment and I was not in the possession of any fancy biscuit cutters, I found a recipe that recommended that I make them into balls instead. The making of the dough for these biscuits were super easy and a dream to work with. The jam however will require a dedicated amount of time. But it will be worth it.
A few notes if you are looking to tackle this recipe…
1. The jam will a long time to break down and require a lot of attention to avoid burning.
2. The dough and jam can be made on separate occasions and refrigerated. If you are working on this dough on a warm day, I would suggest keeping the dough wrapped in cling wrap and chilled in the fridge until you are ready to work with it. Your palms will warm the dough and it will be easy to work with.
3. 45 biscuits may sound like a lot but I can guarantee you that these will not last long. As I write this post, I have already eaten 5 or more of these with a big cup of tea. I wish I had more self control!
What is your favourite pineapple tart shape? Have you tried to make these yourself? (if you haven’t, you should…)
Wishing everyone who is celebrating the Year of the Monkey this Chinese New Year, Gong Xi Fa Chai (Kong Hei Fatt Choy – in Cantonese) to all.
Printable recipe HERE
- 45 pieces
- 2-2.5 hour prep time
- 20-23 minute bake time
Homemade pineapple filling
- 2 x 400g of canned pineapple
- 250g sugar
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- 350g butter – unsalted, softened
- 100g condensed milk
- 510g plain flour
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon milk
- if pineapple is available and in season,
- use 1.5kg of ripe pineapple flesh instead
- (divots removed)
- this will take about 1 – 1.5 hours.
- puree the pineapple flesh and set aside. do not strain.
- In a non-stick saucepan and puree and cook on medium heat stir from time to time until water is reduced
- once the puree thickens, add in sugar and lemon juice
- cook over a low heat, stirring from time to time until thick, sticky and golden brown.
- be careful not to burn the jam.
- cream butter and condensed milk until light and fluffy
- add one egg yolk at a time and beat to combine
- mix in flour mix a little at a time until it is mixed in, soft and no longer sticky to your fingers
- allow jam to cool to room temperature then keep in fridge chilled for at least 2 hours
- roll pineapple fillings into small balls (0.5 inch)
- then roll dough into a 1-inch balls
- do this separately and chill in fridge for at least 15 minutes
- before assembly, make the egg wash (beat with fork to combine, set aside)
- flatten dough into a disc in the palm of your hand and add the pineapple filling in the middle
- bring the edges of the dough together, press lightly to seal
- roll it between your palms until it is shaped like a ball
- cut a few lines across the dough to create the pineapple pattern, then gently apply egg wash with a brush
- preheat oven to 165 degrees (fan-forced)
- bake rolls (four in a row) and bake for 20-23 minutes or until golden brown
- allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container