This past week my husband and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary. We were married in Cobourg, Ontario on a lovely lavender farm surrounded by friends and family. What a perfect day it was. Our guests enjoyed gourmet barbecue prepared by my mentor Chef Christopher Ennew as well as homemade desserts and wedding cake. My Mother and I baked for days in preparation. I was even up at 5 am the day of my wedding to add the finishing touches to my cake. My Mother’s contribution included pies, cookies, squares and most importantly, her famous butter tarts.

Wedding Sweet Table
Down here in the south, butter tarts are an elusive item. If you’re craving these gooey sweet flaky tarts, you’re gonna be making them yourself. In celebration of Canada Day, my anniversary and my up-coming trip home, I am making my family’s famous All Canadian Butter Tarts to share with you!

Butter Tarts

All Canadian Butter Tarts

Pie Dough

  • 5 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2  tsp salt
  • 1  lb Tenderflake lard
  • 1  egg, beaten slightly
  • 1  tbsp vinegar
  • 7⁄8 cup cold water

Stir the flour and salt together.
Cut in the lard with a pastry blender or 2 knives until the shortening is in pea size pieces.
In a measuring cup, combine the egg and vinegar.
Add enough cold water to make one cup.
Stir the liquid into the flour mixture, adding just enough to make the dough cling together.
Stir the water in with a wooden spoon until mixed thoroughly, then gather the dough into a ball, and separate into 6 portions.
Cover and refrigerate for one hour, you can chill overnight, covered, providing you leave it at room temp for 15 mins before rolling.
Roll out dough on a lightly flour surface. Prepare muffin pans by cutting 4-inch (approx) pie dough circles; fit dough circles into muffin cups; set aside in fridge until ready to fill.



  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup chopped pecans (optional)

Set oven to 400 degrees.
Melt together butter and sugar.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.
Beat the eggs, cream and vanilla together. Once the sugar mixture has cooled slightly, vigorously whisk in the egg mixture a little at a time. Stir in the nuts.
Fill the tart shells about 2/3 full.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or till pastry is golden and filling is puffed up.  Let cool in tins for approx. 20 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.