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Mile High Orange Meringue Tarts

Featured at Disney California Adventure® Food & Wine Festival!

These Mile High Orange Meringue Tarts are toasted caraway seed tartlets filled with orange custard and topped with mounds of toasted meringue!

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Refrigeration Time: 2 hours

Yield: 12 – 14; 4-inch mini tarts

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Ingredients

Tart Dough:

  • 3 tablespoons caraway seeds, toasted
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour + 1cup extra for work surface
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 18 tablespoons (2 ¼ sticks) cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 2 large eggs, beaten

Fillling:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 ½ cups fresh orange juice
  • 1 cup orange marmalade, see Orange Marmalade recipe below
  • ½ cup orange liquor
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 large egg yolks, beaten

Meringue:

  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

Make Tart Dough:

Add all-purpose flour, powdered sugar, and salt and pulse in a food processor until combined. Then, add butter and pulse in short bursts until the butter is the size of small peas. Slowly add the beaten egg and pulse until the mixture comes together into a ball. Finally, add caraway seeds and pulse until just combined.

Shape into a disk, dust with flour, and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Remove the dough from fridge and let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes, then roll out to about ¼ inch thick on a lightly floured surface. Use a large round cutter or a knife to cut out circles of dough for each tart pan (I used 5-inch circles for my 4-inch tart pans).

Grease tart pans with butter, then press the dough circles into each pan. Prick shell in several places with a fork and chill in the freezer until ready to bake (minimum 20 minutes).

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Bake shell in the middle of the oven for 12 to 15 minutes more, or until pale golden. Cool on a rack.

Make Filling:

Prepare the filling by whisking sugar, cornstarch, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepot. Then, slowly whisk in orange juice, orange marmalade, and vanilla extract and cook over medium heat until mixture thickens and comes to a boil.

Reduce heat to a simmer and whisk in the orange liquor and butter.

Then, temper the eggs by stirring a couple spoons of the hot liquid into egg yolks and blend egg mixture back into remaining hot mixture in pan.   Keep mixture at a simmer while stirring with a rubber spatula continuously for 2-3 minutes, or until smooth and thickened.

Strain filling through a sieve into a bowl and pour into tart shell. Cool slightly and top with meringue (below).

Make the meringue:

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Slowly add the sugar to the egg whites while continuing to whip. Beat to stiff peaks. Lastly, add vanilla and beat until combined.

Pile meringue onto the tops of each tartlet until meringue just touches the sides of the tart shells. *Note: I love meringue; therefore, I tend to make mountains of meringue on the tops of my tarts!

Brown the meringue with a hand-held kitchen torch or under an oven broiler set to high (watch it carefully). Sprinkle with pumpkin pie seasoning and serve!

Store any leftover (who are we kidding!) tartlets in the fridge.

 

Orange Marmalade

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 7; 8-ounce jars

Ingredients:
1 ½ pounds oranges (about 4 medium)
1 lemon, zest and juice
3 ½ cups water
½ cup orange liquor
3 ½ cups sugar
1 package (1.74 ounces) regular powdered fruit pectin

Directions:
Wash oranges and lemon thoroughly.

Quarter oranges and then thinly slice into ¼ – 1/8 inch slices, removing the seeds as you go.

In a large heavy-bottomed saucepot add oranges, lemon juice, lemon juice, water, and orange liquor and start cooking on medium heat.

Whisk together sugar and pectin in a small bowl and then mix into the orange mixture and stir until dissolved. Bring to a boil while stirring frequently. Boil hard for 1 minute, scraping sides and stirring with a rubber spatula. Lower heat to maintain a rapid simmer and cook, stirring frequently for 20 to 40 minutes or until the fruit is fork tender.

Blend mixture if a smoother texture if desired.