Cranberry Pecan Tartlets

 
1 cup Spectrum Spread non-hydrogenated margarine, divided
4 oz. tofu cream cheese
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped
1 - 12 oz. pkg. fresh or frozen cranberries
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1/3 cup Sucanat
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup unbleached cane sugar
3 T. cornstarch
1/4 t. salt
1 t. vanilla
1/4 t. almond extract
1 cup pecan halves
 

In a small bowl, cream together 3/4 cups margarine and tofu cream cheese until light and fluffy. Using your fingers, add the flour and chopped pecans, and thoroughly mix to form a soft dough. Shape the dough into a ball, cover, and chill for 45 minutes. Lightly oil (or spray with a light mist of oil) eight 4-inch tart pans and set aside. When the dough has thoroughly chilled, transfer it to a work surface and knead it a bit with your hands to soften it up. Divide it into 8 equal pieces and place one piece of dough in each of the prepared tart pans. For each tart pan: place one piece of dough, and using your fingers, press the dough to cover the bottom and sides of the tart pan. Repeat the procedure for the remaining tart pans. Place the tart pans on two cookie sheets and chill them while preparing the filling.

In a saucepan, place the cranberries, dark corn syrup, Sucanat, apple juice, and remaining 1/4 cups Spectrum Spread, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 3-4 minutes or until the skins of the cranberries begin to pop. In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan, stir well to combine, and continue to simmer the mixture for 3-4 additional minutes or until thickened. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla and almond extract. Remove the prepared tart shells from the refrigerator. Pour approximately 1/4 cups of the cranberry filling into each of the tart shells and decoratively arrange the pecan halves on top of the filling. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the pecans and crust are lightly browned. Allow the tartlets to cool in pans completely, loosen edges with a knife, and then carefully remove the tartlets from the pans. Serve one tartlet per person.

Serves 8

 

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1999-2002  Beverly Lynn Bennett