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Chinese Egg Tart With Plum Rose

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5 from 1 vote

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Also known as Hong Kong egg tarts, these homemade flaky puff pastry shells are filled with a slightly sweet, soft, creamy egg custard and are taken up a notch with a beautiful, edible, tangy plum rose. A great Mother’s day treat!

Skip the fresh flowers and get right to baking these beautiful egg tarts for Mom. She will appreciate the love that went into making them, especially when they’re beautiful AND edible!

The egg tart shells in this recipe are made from scratch with a homemade puff pastry dough. If you don’t have time or don’t want to make this part from scratch, you can buy frozen puff pastry dough from your local supermarket to use in this recipe.

*Good To Know*

  • I don’t have egg tart molds, what should I use instead?
    Egg tart molds are best for this recipe but if you don’t have them on hand you can make tarts with a muffin pan. *Note: muffin pans are deeper than egg tart molds and will need more puff pastry & egg custard (which just means that you’ll end up with less amount of tarts). Adjust baking time by adding  3 to 4 more minutes to the recommended baking time.
  • How far in advance should I make my dough?
    To prevent the pastry from shrinking while baking, make your puff pastry dough in advance to allow it enough time to refrigerate. Make the dough a minimum 4 hours ahead to a maximum of 24 hours.
  • Is yellow food colour added to the egg custard?
    Some bakeries or restaurants add yellow food colour to the egg custard to enhance the colour. Instead of doing that, use Omega-3 eggs since they are naturally richer in yellow/orange yolk colour than regular eggs.
  • Why use vanilla sugar instead of extract?
    Vanilla extract is darker in colour than vanilla sugar and affects the signature yellow colour for the egg custard. If you don’t have vanilla sugar available then you can still use extract (just be aware that your custard will be a shade or two darker).

Ingredients you’ll need

For the puff pastry
  • all purpose flour
  • salt
  • white sugar
  • lard (ie. Tenderflake)
  • ice water
  • unsalted butter (to laminate or layer puff pastry)
For the egg custard
  • evaporated milk
  • water
  • white sugar
  • vanilla sugar (ie. Dr Oetker brand)
  • salt
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
 

Tools you’ll need

  • egg tart molds (or muffin pan)
  • tart tamper (optional)
  • 4″ round cookie cutter
  • rolling pin
  • cookie sheet ( 15″ x 10″)
  • large mesh strainer
  • large measuring cup (or a jug with a pouring spout)
  • toothpicks

How to make flaky puff pastry dough

To create a consistent dough, always measure your flour evenly. To do so fluff your flour before you measure it, then scoop with a measuring cup and sweep/scrape the surface with the back of a butter knife. For more precise measurements you can use a food scale to weigh your flour and ingredients (my go-to method).

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (all purpose flour, salt, white sugar) then add lard and use a dough blender or 2 butter knives to cut lard into flour until it resembles coarse crumbs.

Scoop 2 Tablespoons ice water, add it to the flour and knead it with your hand to combine. Add another 2 Tablespoons ice water and knead flour with your hand. Continue to repeat this method until a total of 9 Tablespoons of ice water is added. Your dough should be malleable to shape into a ball and should not be sticky. If it is too sticky, add a Tablespoon of flour and knead until the dough is no longer sticking to the bowl. The same idea applies if your dough is still dry and not sticking together well. Add another Tablespoon of ice water until you can shape your dough into a ball. Wrap it tightly with cling wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours (overnight is best).

Why does puff pastry need to be refrigerated first?

Chilling the dough for a few hours gives its gluten a chance to relax and keeps the lard / butter firm. In doing so, it helps slow down the pastry’s shrinking while baking. Also, chilled dough makes it easier to roll out and hold its shape while you work. If the puff pastry starts to warm to room temperature, refrigerate it for 30 minutes before you continue working. The puff pastry cannot be at room temperature because it will be soft and the layers will stick together. This reduces your chance in a flaky tart crust.

 A few tips to keep dough cool longer while you work:

  • work in an air conditioned or cool room if possible
  • roll dough on work surface away from the oven (while it’s preheating)
  • use a marble cutting board to roll out dough as marble keeps dough cool longer
  • a marble rolling pin helps keep dough cool while you work
  • refrigerate excess dough while you work

How to laminate (layer) puff pastry dough with butter

Slice a block of cold unsalted butter approx. 1 cm thick with a sharp knife. Weigh your sliced butter to equal 113 g (which is 1/2 cup of butter). Alternatively, use the butter wrap measurement guide to cut 1/2 cup butter, then slice it into 1cm thick slices.

For this next step, work quickly to keep butter and dough cold. On a lightly floured surface with a rolling pin dusted with flour, roll chilled dough out into a roughly 8 x 15 inch rectangle. Dust a little flour on the dough while you roll to prevent it from sticking to the pin if needed. Place 4 or 5 slices of butter to the center of your rolled rectangle. Fold the third bottom up and on top of the butter. Then add the remaining butter slices on top of the folded dough and fold the top third down on top of the butter to the center.  Your dough should resemble a smaller rectangle now. Dust rolling pin with more flour and carefully roll dough out into an 8 x 15 inch rectangle again.

At this point, you can fold the rectangle in half and roll it again, or you can repeat the folding method we did earlier (bottom third up to center, then top third down). The more folds you create, the flakier your shell will be. Roll dough into an 8 x 15 inch rectangle. If the dough feels sticky, refrigerate it for 30 minutes before you continue.

With a 4″ round cookie cutter, press cutter into your dough but DO NOT twist the cutter. Twisting will seal the edges and won’t allow the shell to bake with flaky layers. Press your cut out dough disc into the egg tart mold with a tart tamper (or your fingers). Repeat this step to cover the rest of the tart molds and refrigerate excess dough. Place molds on a cookie sheet for easy transfer to oven.

How to make egg custard

In a small sauce pan on medium heat, warm together evaporated milk, water, white sugar, vanilla sugar and salt (don’t let it boil). Warm it just until the sugar is dissolved then remove from heat and allow milk to cool for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk together 2 large eggs + 3 egg yolks (make sure these are at room temperature) in a large mixing bowl. Slowly pour cooled evaporated milk into the eggs while continuing to whisk. Then pour egg custard through a large mesh strainer over top of a large measuring cup to remove air bubbles and to filter egg custard. Set aside but do not refrigerate. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).

How to make plum roses

Plums should be washed, halved, pitted and sliced as thinly as you can. You only need about 2 plums (depending on the size of the plum) but slice 3 plums to have extra slices on hand in case you need more. Stack 2 parallel plum slices on top of each other and roll them tightly together. Insert 2 wooden toothpicks in the shape of an X through the rolled up plum slices to hold it together. Set aside and repeat this step until you have 24 roses (since this recipe makes 24 egg tarts).

Assemble and bake egg tarts

Place a plum rose into the center of your tart mold by lightly pressing the toothpick ends into the puff pastry. Repeat this step for the remaining tart molds.

Then slowly pour egg custard into the puff pastry to fill 1/2 of the mold. Your pastry shell should have about 1 cm of over hang because it will shrink a bit during baking. Repeat this step for the remaining tart molds and carefully place them back on the cookie tray. Slowly move tray to the middle oven rack. Bake for 26 minutes then remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes. Remove wooden toothpicks from each tart and slide tart out of its mold onto a wire rack. Cool for another 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm or chill for 1 hour. Dust a little icing sugar on top for added decor.

If you enjoyed my recipe, please leave a comment or rate it below.  Also don’t forget to follow me on my social media channels (YouTube, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram) to keep up with my latest kitchen shenanigans.

Chinese Egg Tarts With Plum Rose

Also known as Hong Kong egg tarts, these homemade flaky puff pastry shells are filled with a slightly sweet, soft, creamy egg custard and are taken up a notch with a beautiful, edible, tangy plum rose. A great Mother's day treat!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 26 minutes
Dough Chill Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 6 minutes
Yields: 24 3″ egg tarts

Ingredients

Flaky Puff Pastry

  • cups (313 g) all purpose flour, fluffed, scooped & swept (for accurate measurement)
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 g) salt
  • ¼ cup (50 g) white sugar
  • ½ cup (103 g) lard (ie. Tenderflake), room temperature
  • 9 Tablespoons (133 ml) ice water
  • ½ cup (113 g) cold unsalted butter, sliced 0.5 cm thick

Egg Custard

  • 1 cup (237 ml) evaporated milk
  • ¾ cup (177 ml) water
  • ½ cup (100 g) white sugar
  • 1 envelope (9 g) vanilla sugar, (or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract)
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 g) salt
  • 2 large (100 ml) eggs (whole), room temperature
  • 3 large (51 ml) egg yolks, room temperature

Plum Roses

  • 3 ripe (198 g) plums, halved, pitted and sliced thinly
  • 48 small wooden toothpicks

INSTRUCTIONS 

Flaky Puff Pastry

  • In a large mixing bowl, mix together dry ingredients (all-purpose flour, salt and sugar). Add lard to flour mix and cut lard with a dough blender or 2 butter knives until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Add 2 Tablespoons Ice water to flour and knead with your hand. Add another 2 Tablespoons and knead with your hand. Continue to repeat this method until a total of 9 Tablespoons of Ice water is kneaded into flour. Your dough should be malleable enough to shape into a ball (it should not be sticky). Wrap dough ball tightly with cling wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours (overnight is best).
  • Work quickly in this step (to keep dough as cold as possible). On a lightly floured surface, with a rolling pin dusted with flour, roll dough into a roughly 8 x 15 inch rectangle. Dust a little flour on the dough and rolling pin. Place 4 or 5 slices of cold butter to the center of the rolled rectangle. Fold the third bottom up and on top of the butter. Then add remaining butter slices on top of the folded dough and fold the top third down on top of the butter to the center.  Your dough should resemble a smaller rectangle now. Dust rolling pin with more flour and carefully roll dough out into an 8 x 15 inch rectangle again.
  • At this point, you can fold the rectangle in half and roll it again, or you can repeat the fold method we did in our previous step (bottom third up to center, then top third down). The more folds you create, the flakier your shell will be. Roll dough into an 8 x 15 inch rectangle with a 1 cm thickness. If dough feels sticky, refrigerate it for 30 minutes before you continue.
  • With a 4" round cookie cutter press down on dough but DO NOT twist your cutter. Twisting will seal the edge and prevent a flaky shell on baking. Use a knife to lift cut-out dough disc and press it into a 3" egg tart mold with a tart tamper (or your fingers). Repeat this for the rest of the tart molds. Refrigerate excess dough (wrapped in cling wrap) until you're ready to make a second batch. Place molds on a cookie sheet for easy transfer to oven.

Egg Custard

  • In a small sauce pan on medium heat, stir together evaporated milk, water, white sugar, vanilla sugar and salt. Warm it for 5 minutes or just until sugar is dissolved and remove from heat (don't let it come to a boil). Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 eggs + 3 egg yolks. Slowly pour cooled, evaporated milk into the eggs while continuing to whisk. Place a large mesh strainer over a large measuring cup with a spout. Pour Egg custard through mesh strainer to remove air bubbles and to filter egg custard. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).

Plum Roses

  • Plums should be halved, pitted and sliced thinly (cut more than you need to have extras available).
  • Stack 2 parallel plum slices on top of each other and roll them tightly together. Insert 2 toothpicks in the shape of an X through rolled up plum slices to hold it together. Set aside and repeat this step until you have 24 roses.

Assembling the Egg Tarts

  • Place a plum rose into the center of your tart mold by lightly pressing the toothpick ends into the puff pastry to keep the rose in place. Repeat this step for the remaining tart molds.
  • Slowly pour egg custard into the puff pastry to fill 1/2 of the mold. Your pastry shell should have about 1 cm of over hang because it will shrink a bit during baking. Repeat this step for the remaining tart molds and carefully place them back on a cookie tray. Slowly move tray to the middle oven rack. Bake for 26 minutes .
  • Carefully remove tray from oven and allow tarts to cool for 10 minutes. Remove toothpicks from each tart then slide each egg tart out of the mold and onto a wire rack to cool for another 5 to 10 minutes. Serve while warm or refrigerate for 1 hour and enjoy cold. Dust a little icing sugar on each tart for added decor.
Category: Dessert
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: egg, flaky, plum rose, puff pastry, tarts

Tips

I don’t have egg tart molds, what should I use instead?
Egg tart molds are best for this recipe but if you don’t have them on hand you can make tarts with a muffin pan. *Note: muffin pans are deeper than egg tart molds and will need more puff pastry & egg custard (which just means that you’ll end up with less amount of tarts). Adjust baking time by adding  3 to 4 more minutes to the recommended baking time.
How far in advance should I make my dough?

To prevent the pastry from shrinking while baking, make your puff pastry dough in advance to allow it enough time to refrigerate. Make the dough a minimum 4 hours ahead to a maximum of 24 hours.
Is yellow food colour added to the egg custard?
Some bakeries or restaurants add yellow food colour to the egg custard to enhance the colour. Instead of doing that, use Omega-3 eggs since they are naturally richer in yellow/orange yolk colour than regular eggs.
Why use vanilla sugar instead of extract?
Vanilla extract is darker in colour than vanilla sugar and affects the signature yellow colour for the egg custard. If you don’t have vanilla sugar available then you can still use extract (just be aware that your custard will be a shade or two darker).
Nutrition Facts
Chinese Egg Tarts With Plum Rose
Amount Per Serving
Calories 171 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Trans Fat 1g
Cholesterol 56mg19%
Sodium 68mg3%
Potassium 56mg2%
Carbohydrates 17g6%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 197IU4%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 36mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Did you make this? I would love to see your creation!Tag me @sweet2savoury on Instagram and hashtag it #sweet2savoury

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1 comment

David May 18, 2021 - 12:38 pm

5 stars
What a great idea with the plum!!! The crust was so flaky and had the perfect bite. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe.

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