This popular dessert features a creamy silky egg custard that is baked in a crispy buttery puff pastry shell.
This traditional dessert dates back to the 1920s, and can be commonly found at dim sum restaurants and Chinese bakeries. The original version of these egg tarts is made with a lard pastry crust, but I’m not a fan of baking with lard. So, in my shortcut recipe, I use a store-bought butter puff pastry. With that, all you need is eggs, sugar, evaporated milk, and vanilla to put together this simple egg tart recipe.
Egg tarts are my favorite Chinese dessert. I remember my mom always treating me to them whenever we went shopping in Chinatown when I was a kid. Now, I know the name “egg tarts” might not sound appealing to some people, but its not like you’re eating a straight up egg in a dessert. The filling is delicate and sweet with a creamy vanilla taste. The shell is crispy, flaky and buttery. Perhaps custard tarts would be a better name and description for this dessert.
Chinese New Year is coming up, “Gong Hay Fat Choy”, may you be happy and prosperous in the coming year.
- 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed and refrigerated
- ⅓ cup plus 1 tbsp (80g) white sugar
- ⅔ cup (150g) warm water
- ⅓ cup (75g) evaporated milk
- 2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
- ½ tsp vanilla
- Preheat oven to 400F and position rack in lower third of oven.
- Completely dissolve the sugar in the warm water. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
- Roll out the pastry dough to 12 x 12 inches and cut out 9 circles using a 4 inch cookie cutter. Gently press onto tart tins and place on baking sheet.
- Whisk the eggs, egg yolk, evaporated milk and vanilla together. Stir in the room temperature sugar solution. Strain the egg mixture into a large measuring cup through a fine sieve. Carefully pour into tart shells, filling to just below the rim.
- Bake at 400F for 10-15 minutes until the edges are lightly brown. Please keep an eye on the tarts as they are baking. As soon as the custard starts to puff, you need to open the oven door 2-3 inches to prevent the filling from puffing up too much and collapsing when cooled.
- Once the edges start to brown, reduce the heat to 350F and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the custard is done. You can test the filling by inserting a toothpick into the custard, if it can stand on its own, it's done.
The eggs tarts are best enjoyed the day of, but can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and reheated in the oven before serving.
Recipe adapted from Christine’s Recipes.