Butter Tarts

A quintessential Canadian dessert.

Feast Butter Tarts

A recipe excerpted from Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Roadtrip by Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller.

This recipe for an iconic Canadian treat comes from Jillian Povarchook, our dear friend who assisted with much of the styling and photography for this book. When we first asked if she’d be willing to help, she said, “Yes! On one condition—that we put my nana’s butter tarts in it.” Of course, we very happily complied. When she gave us the recipe, Jill shared this story:

Mary Weissman, my nana, was born in 1934, in Princeton, BC, to Slovak immigrants. She only spoke Slovak when she started grade school, so when she wanted to invite a schoolmate over to play after school one day, she did the most logical thing, grabbed the little girl’s arm and said, “Buchta, buchta!” Buchta means bun or dumpling in Slovak, and it was her favourite snack. Bonding over food is something my nana continued to do for the rest of her life—most often over these butter tarts—and my family is thankful for it every day. For these tarts, you can prepare your own pastry shells using a full batch of The Pie Shoppe’s Pastry (page 240), or use store-bought individual tart shells.

Serves: 12


1/3 cup (80 mL) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (250 mL) lightly packed brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 Tbsp (30 mL) whole milk
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried currants
12 unbaked tart shells


Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).

Cream the butter with an electric mixer until pale, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sugar and beat until well com- bined. Turn the mixer down to low and mix in the egg, milk, and vanilla. Mix in the currants.

Distribute the filling evenly among the prepared tart shells and place in the oven. Bake for 8 minutes, then lower the heat to 350°F (180°C) and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the filling is puffy and the pastry edges are a light golden brown.

Let cool before serving, as difficult as that may be.

Learn more about the story behind the cookbook, here.

Find more classic Canadian recipes from Feast here.

Excerpted from Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Roadtrip by Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller. Copyright © 2017 Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.


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