On Tarts

My son went to a girl's house for dinner last night. This is the girl he has - for months - told me about, the one who likes him but he doesn't like her back like that, he just wants to hang out with her, you know? There is a girl-ask-boy dance right now (they call this Morp now, which is backwards for prom, or forwards for no one has any idea who is supposed to pick who up for the dance) and according to him yesterday, no one else asked him, and he wanted to go to the dance, so here we are.

My son is going out with another woman. I supposed I knew this day would come. 

Interestingly enough, even though he doesn't like like her and they each bought their own tickets to the dance, her parents are still insistent that he come over for dinner with her parents, siblings, distant cousins, the CIA, and a polygrapher. While I also have very high standards for the people who spend time with my daughter, I feel like this is perhaps a bit much for a glorified chauffeur.

Or I felt, until late last night when he informed me that he has, in fact, been *into* this girl for like ever and what I learned is that I should really learn to not question the intuition of a father who's very adorable daughter's [anything] is on the line. 

So thank god I baked dessert for them. It was my son's first formal date-interview (whether or not I knew at the time that it was going to matter to him), and I am pretty sure my family's honor rests on him using the correct fork, not picking his nose, and appearing semi-normal. Nothing says, "My son will be a perfect gentleman and dutiful escort for your precious little tulip whom he's tried very hard to convince me he's not really all that into, but you sure seem to be" like a tray full of tarts.

tarts aerial.jpg

Or perhaps I just wanted to make sure that, even if I couldn't be there, a little bit of me was there, anyway. Because as I have told that child a million times, I am the only tart that he will ever need.

tarts side.jpg

How to make them:

When two people love each other very much, they get reeeeeeallly drunk an....wait, you meant snacks. Fine.

How to make the tarts:

I can't make pie crust. I disgrace my Canadiancestors. I use Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust, and cut tart shells out of the rolled crusts using the top of a Starbucks City Mug. (The architectural ones, not those wussy new ones. It matters.) Those tart shell circle thingys get pressed into really well-greased/Pammed muffin tins (1 box of pie shells contains two rolls, and will yield 12 tart shells) and filled a little more than 3/4 of the way with one of these two fillings:

Pecan - mix (whisk or mixer) together:

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup light Karo syrup
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 chopped (by hand, with a knife, so they're very coarse) pecans
  • at least 2 tsp Jack Daniel's (enough that you can just start to taste it - 3 or 4 tsp will probably do the trick)

Key Lime - mix (definetly with a mixer) together:

  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup key lime juice (I would rather die than hand-squeeze key lime juice; I use the bottled kind. It's win.)
  • Grated lime zest from one whole lime and no, I have no idea how much it measures out to

Mix that all up, pour it in the shells. You'll have a bunch left over; that's okay, store it for another batch. For yourself. To stress-eat all alone out of a plastic tub while your son goes out to replace you. No really, it's fine.