Spicy Pineapple Prosciutto Tarts
Hawaiian pizza may be the most divisive of pies, but pastry chef and author of The Fearless Baker Erin McDowell’s spicy pineapple prosciutto tarts are a guaranteed winner all around. A pinkies-out version of the cubed pineapple and ham flavor combo, they’re impossible not to love.
“This is a riff on Hawaiian pizza,” she tells us, “but it’s like a really fancy Hawaiian pizza. You caramelize the pineapple on the stovetop with lots of black pepper, bake it on store-bought puff pastry and once it’s baked, top it with a pile of prosciutto and a bit of red-pepper flakes for spice. They have a little bit of protein, a little bit of richness and plenty of tartness from the pineapple.”
“You could serve them alongside a salad as a meal—say, a really delicious brunch,” she continues, “but they also make a great appetizer for a cocktail party.”
You bring the tarts; we’ll take cocktail duty. See you in 30.
1 pineapple—skin removed, cored (about 610g) and cut into eight ½-inch thick rings
⅓ cup (71g) light brown sugar
1½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of fine sea salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 sheets frozen puff pastry (482g), thawed
Egg wash, as needed
Aleppo pepper, Korean chili powder or crushed red-pepper flakes
8 ounces (226g) prosciutto
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Pat the pineapple dry with paper towels. In a medium bowl, whisk the brown sugar, pepper and salt to combine. Dip each pineapple into the brown sugar mixture, lightly coating both sides.
2. Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the sugared pineapple rings and cook until the sugar is caramelized and golden on both sides, about 3 minutes total. Remove from the pan and let cool.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the puff pastry sheets to ¼-inch thick. Cut each sheet into 6 even squares; you should end up with 12 squares total.
4. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and arrange the dough squares evenly between them. Brush each piece of dough evenly with egg wash, and dock all over with a fork.
5. Place a cooled pineapple ring on top of each piece of dough. Bake the pastries until the crust is very golden brown and the pineapple is tender, 15 to 17 minutes.
6. Sprinkle each tart with Aleppo pepper, Korean chili powder or crushed red-pepper flakes to taste. Let cool for at least 10 minutes, then top each pastry with 1 ounce (28g) prosciutto in a pile just before serving warm or at room temperature.