Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Egg Tards

For the Lunar New Year, I wanted to bring in something tasty to share with my coworkers. In previous years, I had made kai kou xiao, or "laughing cookies": round, sesame-encrusted sweets that are so named because the split that appears in the cookie after it is deep-fried has the shape of an open, laughing mouth. However, this year I wanted to do something different, so I opted to bring in a bunch of dan ta, or egg custard tarts.

The night before Lunar New Year's Eve, my brother and I ran around five or six different bakeries in Chinatown, hunting for the best versions before I had to make my way to Amazing 66 for this meal. In one bakery, from which my brother ended up picking up a few dozen, one woman gave me a dan ta made with only egg whites to sample. To my surprise, it tasted just as eggy as its yolkier brethren, which I suppose makes it a good choice for people trying to watch their cholesterol levels (just don't fool yourself into thinking that it's healthy).

Unfortunately I don't remember which bakery I ultimately purchased mine from. What I do remember is that I cleaned out the last ones remaining, so the case you see at the top actually had a tray of tarts sitting in there just moments before. Alas, we are only left with Egg Tards.
Egg custard pastry, Wonderful Bakery
These were okay, but I've had better. I generally prefer the crusts that are flaky and in layers, as opposed to the crusts that are more like shortbread cookies. This was certainly the flaky kind, but something about the crust just seemed flavorless. It was also a bit soggy, but as I only sampled one the next day, I assume they would be fine eaten fresh.
Egg custard pastry, Wonderful Bakery
I always love dan ta, though, no matter what the crust.

1 comment:

  1. i begggg to differ. i prefer what you call the 'shortbread' crusts. there's more substance to them for me, i don't like it when things break apart (or in this case, flake off) while i'm eating.