We love simple recipes and one of our favourite recipes to cook with toddlers and preschoolers are simple Jam Tarts. This Easy Jam Tart Recipe is ideal too cook with them and we love to cook it in conjunction with singing nursery rhymes like The Queen of Hearts. Scroll down to discover this simple Pastry Jam Tarts
Queen of Hearts Nursery Rhyme
If you don't know the Queen of Heart's Nursery Rhyme it is a classic British Nursery Rhyme based on the royal cards from a pack of playing cards and first appeared in the mid 18th Century. The words that we sing together are:
The Queen of Hearts she made some tarts,
All on a summer's Day.
The Knave of Hearts he stole the tarts,
And took them clean away.
The King of Hearts,
Called for the Tarts,
And beat the Knave full score.
The Knave of Hearts brought back the tarts,
And swore he'd steal no more!
The poem is the inspiration for the Queen of Hearts in the classic Story Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll and although we made them initally for eating whilst we sang the rhyme they would make a great snack when reading aloud together the classic story too.
Ingredients for Queen of Hearts Jam Tarts Recipe to Cook with Kids
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If you do not wish to make your own pastry you can use ready made pastry (short crust is best!)
You will also need a sieve, mixing bowl, table knife, tablespoon, rolling pin, bun tin, pastry cutter and teaspoon.
How to make the Queen of Hearts Jam Tarts with Toddlers
To get the best pastry - you need to have cold utensils and cold hands - so we washed our hands with cold water to make sure that we didn't melt the fats. J loves the washing the hands part - and we have to sing the hand washing song from I can cook on Cbeebies every time we do. I pre-measure all of the ingredients first at the moment with most dishes so with everything prepared we set to work making the tarts. First task is to cut up the fat in with the sieved flour and pinch of salt.
Once the butter was cut up into small cubes then it's making breadcrumb type consistency out of the mixture. Using finger types rub the butter into the flour. J loved this and kept telling us that it was snowing!
Once the mixture is crumbled - we then added the water the recipe is very precise that it has to be exactly 2 and a half tablespoons of cold water - whether all that went in or not I'm not sure as J helped a lot - but I'm guessing most did as they taste very good.
At this point you can leave the pastry covered in a cool place until you need it - we used it straight away. To make it easier for J I divided it up into smaller balls and using his rolling pin he rolled it out onto a lightly floured surface and then cut using a pastry cutter that fits nicely into our tin.
We used a 12 bun tin and had greased the tin first. J helped me put the tarts into the tin and then he had lots of fun filling them with a heaped teaspoon of jam.
You need to preheat the oven to 220 degrees Centigrade (425 F gas mark 7) and the tarts cooked for 12 mins (but around 10 is normal until the pastry is just brown) - we left them to cool and then have enjoyed the tarts.
- Preheat the Oven to 220C.
- Pre-measure all of the ingredients.
- Cut up the lard and margarine and add to the sieved flour and pinch of salt.
- Use your fingers to rub the flour and fats together to a breadcrumb consistency.
- Add the water to the mixture and knead to a dough.
- Cover and place in the fridge for a minimum of 1/2 an hour to get the best pastry. But it can be used straight away if needed.
- Grease a 12 hole pie tin.
- Roll out the dough about 1/2 cm thick and cut with a circular pastry cutter to fit your tin.
- Fill each tart with Jam.
- Place the tarts in the oven for between 10 and 12 minutes.
- Cool and enjoy.
Shop this Recipe
When cooking with kids you don't need to spend a fortune on getting specific equipment to cook with them instead just get a few essentials and then use your own equipment. In our Shop this Recipe we've included recommended products we used to make these delicious traditional Jam tarts.
We use a shallow pie tin with 12 holes in to make our jam tarts it's the same tin we also use for mince pies at Christmas time. I've even made Yorkshire Puddings in it and they rise beautifully.
I love my wooden rolling pin but found that when the kids were little it was difficult for them to use so I did buy specific rolling pins to use with them. More recently I have brought these silicone rolling pins as presents for my friends children as they are none stick perfect for baking with kids.
Although in the pictures you see us using a set of plastic pastry cutters these unfortunately broke and were beyond repair and in an effort to reduce plastics in the home I bought this set of metal pastry cutters to replace them. They have fluted edges on one side and then plain on the other perfect for baking and will last a long time.