Easter “Hop Tarts”


Here’s a fruity snack or decadent breakfast item that is sure to put a little pep in your step and hop in your walk!  E and I made ours into egg shapes and filled them with blueberry filling but any fruit filling would work (apple cinnamon, very cherry, raspberry, or even a triple berry blend) and any shape would be fun!  I’ve made heart shaped ones before and have even baked them on a popsicle stick for a cute little pie pop!

The dough we used is a bit of a twist to my favourite empanada dough recipe.  I use the traditional dough for a multitude of hand pie options…chicken pot pie, pizza, taco, and mushroom spinach just to name a few.  It’s a really nice dough to work with, and the hand pies or empanadas can be frozen prior to baking or frying with no alteration to the end product.  Since I wanted to make these “hop tarts” sweet as opposed to savoury and a little more rich than usual I substituted the lard for butter and added 1/4 cup sugar as well as 1 tsp vanilla and 1/2 tsp lemon zest.  You could also swap out the vanilla and lemon zest for almond extract, orange zest or even cinnamon and nutmeg.

Traditional Dough Recipe:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp sugar (1/4 cup for ‘hop tarts’)
  • 6 Tbsp lard (or butter for ‘hop tarts’)
  • 1 whole egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup cold water

Mix dough together and let rest in fridge for 1/2 hour at least (I have mixed it up the day before and it works well too).

Roll out dough , cut into desired shapes and fill, cover with the top piece of dough (cut into same shape), crimp or fork edges and bake at 375* until golden.

Blueberry Filling

  • 1 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch (mixed with a bit of water)

In a sauce pan cook the berries with the sugar and lemon juice.  Add the cornstarch slurry and cook until thick.  Let cool before filling ‘hop tarts’.

Once slightly cooled, glaze with icing as desired and decorate with sprinkles. We tinted our icing with a violet food colouring gel and sprinkled with rainbow sprinkles but the sky is the limit! And of course we enlisted the help of a few tractors in today’s bake-off…all roads lead back to farming after all!!  These yummy treats are all ready and packed up for a special delivery this weekend!  Happy Spring! Hoppy Easter!




Tasty Tree-top Treats for Easter!


Here’s a fun cupcake topper (or stand-alone treat) to share with your family this Easter! It’s really easy, even little hands can help and it’s tasty too!  This week in our house we’ve had a bit of a theme of Everything Birds and it’s been fun to teach E about our fine feathered friends!  We spent our Monday afternoon making these chocolatey nests and decorating them with pretty pastel eggs!

This is how you make them:

  • In a double boiler melt 1 pkg of chocolate chips and 1/2 pkg white chocolate chips.
  • Once melted, add 3/4-1 full bag of Chinese dry steamed noodles.  Mix fairly aggressively, it’s easier to form them into nests if some of the noodles are broken.
  • Scoop desired amount of chocolate noodles onto wax paper and using a teaspoon, create a bit of a divet in each mound for the eggs to nestle in.
  • We filled each divet with three mini eggs, this was E’s job (I let him eat a few while he worked because tasting is the best part!)
  • Let the nests cool and set on your counter.

I tried to teach E about nests as we were making them.  I explained that this is where birds sleep and even showed him a few vacant nests in some of the bare trees in our yard.  It’s amazing to me just how much E retains from these little ‘lessons’ and I love hearing him repeat some of these new words!


While our nests were cooling we made some basic chocolate cupcakes.  We iced the cupcakes with a thin layer of frosting and then placed the completed nests on top for an easily decorated treat for our Easter dinner coming this weekend…but the nests can most definitely be enjoyed all on their own!  They’re cute and so completely festive for Spring and are sure to be a hit on your Easter table!