The Procrastinator and Pink Grapefruit Tartlets

I’m having to type quietly.

Things are very tense around here.

It’s all to do with Arabella.

The Higher School Certificate starts tomorrow and first up is Part One of her English exam.  Arabella’s least favourite subject is English so that’s adding to the drama.

Pink Grapefruit Tartlets

Over the past few days (add in weeks, months and years), I’ve been trying to encourage her to study but she’s been the master of procrastination.  Yesterday she slept in, then she sorted her room (but it didn’t look any better), then she went to the gym and came home with a new pair of shoes, then lay down on the trampoline in the sun.  ‘Get up off the trampoline; you’ve done no study today.  What are you doing?’

‘I just want it to be over.  I’ve got no life.  I can’t wait to be free’.

‘There’s just a few days of study opportunity left and you should be making the most…’

‘Mum, I’m in love’.


‘I am.  My most favourite jumper in the world is on sale and I’m in love with it’.

‘Oh, for heaven’s sake’.

‘It’s 40% off mum, and it’s Sass and Bide‘.’

‘You don’t need a jumper at this time of year, Arabella, it’s Spring’.

‘It’s in my size’.

‘When you finish your exams you can get a job and then go out and buy as many jumpers as you like.  Now what about some study’.

‘I studied all day yesterday.  I’m taking a break’.

‘But couldn’t you, on your break, at least read over your texts?’ (Not ‘text messages’, English texts like Shakespeare).

‘I’m going to the library soon.  Is there any lunch?’

A little fiddly but delicious

Fast forward 24 hours and it’s the eve before the first exam and reality has struck.  We’re having to tiptoe around the house while Arabella crams.

Before she went to the library she did compliment me on these tarts and say how good she thought they looked.  And she hasn’t lost her sense of humour because when I told her how long I’d been in the kitchen, she laughed.


Lovely with whipped cream

Pink Grapefruit Tartlets

Makes:  6

Degree of Difficulty:  3/5  They’re not actually that difficult, but the pastry seems to have many processes.

Cost:    Pink grapefruit are very inexpensive and the rest of the ingredients are very basic.

  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 125g chilled unsalted butter, chopped
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tbspn iced water

Grapefruit Filling

  • 1/2 cup (125ml) single cream
  • 1 egg
  • 2 egg yolks, extra
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/3 cup pink grapefruit juice

For the pastry:

Place the flour, butter and icing sugar in a food processor and process until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.  (I don’t have a food processor so did this the old-fashioned way and the results were just as good).  With the motor running add the egg yolks and process until combined.  Add the iced water and process until the dough just comes together.  Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and gently bring together to form a ball.  Flatten into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Line 6 x 8.5cm round lightly greased, loose-bottomed fluted tins with the pastry, prick with a fork and place in the fridge for half an hour.  Line the pastry cases with baking paper and fill with baking weights.  Bake for 15 minutes at 180C (375F), remove the paper and weights and bake for a further 10 minutes or until the pastry is light golden.  Remove from the oven and set aside.

To make the grapefruit filling:  place the cream, eggs, extra yolks, sugar and grapefruit juice in a bowl and whisk to combine.  Strain the mixture into a clean bowl.  Transfer the tarts to a baking tray and carefully pour the filling into the tart shells.  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until just set.  Allow to cool before refrigerating until set.  Top with grapefruit and cream to serve.

This recipe has been slightly adapted from the Oct/Nov 2012 issue of Donna Hay Magazine.

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  1. Good luck Arabella!

  2. Saffronandhoney says:

    I love the sweet-tart combination going on in these grapefruit tarts. And good luck to Arabella 🙂

  3. Eva Taylor says:

    I was the complete opposite at Arabella’s age, I started to study too early and then I feared I would forget thing for the exams!
    Pink grapefruit is quite expensive here, it works out to $1.25 Canadian each! Not withstanding it would be worth it for these lovely tarts!
    Hope your spring is nicer than our fall, rain, rain and more rain.

  4. Sweet Posy Dreams says:

    Good luck to Arabella with her exams.

  5. Good luck to your procrastinator. I’ve got one of those currently in the house. Apparently I’m the distraction. 🙂

    Cute tarts. I’ve got some mixed citrus curd in the house I’d like to make something similar with … one of these days. Procrastination may be genetic but at least I have crutches as MY excuse.

  6. says:

    I was a procrastinator too…it drove my parents crazy! Always waiting until the last moment before a test or paper was due. Goodness, I get anxiety just thinking about it! Thankfully, these little tarts are the perfect antidote. They look lovely!

  7. Victoria of Flavors of the Sun says:

    My son is a procrastinator as well…sigh…drives me mad. But like with Arabella, it all works out in the end. Those tartlets look light and refreshing. I hope all goes well with A’s exams!

  8. kitchenriffs says:

    It took me quite some time to learn that procrastination just made everything last longer – if I just did what I needed to do, I wouldn’t have to put so much effort into not doing it! I love grapefruit and love tarts – great combo of flavors here. Thanks.

  9. thelifeofclare says:

    These look fantastic! I remember that I went to a job interview just before my English exam, I got the job during the interview and didn’t think I even needed my exam results. I was right, I haven’t used my year 12 marks since.

  10. yummychunklet says:

    Well, they are delicious looking tarts, but I understand your hesitation to buy the jumper. Studies first!

  11. Minnesota Prairie Roots says:

    Good luck on the exams. Stress. Sometimes hard to remember what it’s like to be young and find tests to be the most stressful part of life. Little do the young know, and I’m not talking exams.

  12. Good luck to Arabella can’t say I’m not the same at all! God the stress especially for English, the worst – at least it will be over soon!
    She deserves many of these delicious tarts once she comes home 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  13. Procrastination and I are best friends…why do you think I am here reading your blog instead of doing something necessary like folding clothes or cleaning the house? Procrastination baby;-p Lovely tartlettes.btw

  14. Glamorous Glutton says:

    These look great. Revising for exams is so hard to get the teens to do. It is boring, not sure why they’d think it was anything else. I’m currently nagging for the uni entry personal statement to be written, first draft not done and I’m sure there will be at least two more drafts. GG

  15. oh did i tell you that procrastination is my middle name? hahah i think i was born with it… so no worries your daughter will grow up fine
    Grapefruit sounds good in a tartlette… kinda sweet and tangy… love it!

  16. Jennifer Cullen says:

    My daughter is trying to finish up a multi-step science project that’s due tomorrow. Procrastination at it’s worst. I could use one of those tartlets right about now!

  17. I love citrust desserts! These look soooo good. Good luck to Arabella! I’m sure she’ll do well. I’ve found that I only procrastinate when I know that I really know the material 🙂

  18. These look stunning. I have an excess of grapefruit at the moment, so these would be a great way to use them. Good Luck to Arabella for her exams. I am sure you will also be looking forward to when the exam period is over.

  19. InTolerant Chef says:

    What a lovely filling, just a bit tart and not too sweet- yummo!
    Thank goodness we don’t have the HSC in Canberra, it’s so much pressure crammed into just a few days.
    Good luck to Arabella, and good luck too you too Charlie! Hope you both make it through alive and sane 🙂 xox

  20. Tina @ bitemeshowme says:

    Wishing Arabella all the best for her HSC xx

  21. GOOD LUCK to Arabella!! I remember it was a really stressful time for me so hope it goes super smoothly for her. Love those tarts!

  22. Claire @ Claire K Creations says:

    Good luck Arabella!
    I used to be a pretty good procrastinator too. Actually I don’t think I’ve really lost the skill. I can get some pretty good cleaning and tidying done when I’ve got a real job on my list.
    I would have complimented you on these too. Yum!

  23. I am SO glad I’m through studying drama..but there always seems to be some sort replacement drama 🙂 Hope Arabella does well! I will actually fake studying to get one of your grapefruit tarts!

  24. Nic@diningwithastud says:

    Ooh all the best for Arabellas exams 🙂 it will be over soon! Keep yourself sane with these tarts in the mean time

  25. Barb Bamber says:

    I have a sore throat starting.. I think a little grapefruit tartlet would just hit the spot.. maybe even cure what ails:) Your daughter is a procrastinator like my son.. he talks and talks about what he plans to do to study. And then he’s a right old bear the day before the exam because panic has set in! I wonder when they will figure it out??

  26. The Café Sucré Farine says:

    I had a procrastinator like that but it was the opposite sex. My son could beat just about anyone at it! They do grow up though and now a very responsible adult and he’s about to have a baby so he’ll understand what it’s “all about”, right? 🙂

  27. It will be another couple of months before our fruit is ready but then I love to find grapefruit recipes. I find it is a very polarizing fruit!

  28. Am smiling: Arabella would NOT have liked to be in my high school class: methinks Geoffrey Chaucer was about the easiest to comprehend and analysing Shakespeare’s essays had to be a pure pleasure 🙂 ! Oh, I had just arrived from Europe and knew about a hundred words in modern English! Looking at ‘olde worldy English’ was a nightmare not happening 🙂 ! Huh: it can be done . . . Hope she went well in her exams . . .

  29. Cass @foodmyfriend says:

    Hehehe I remember when I did my HSC. I was exactly the same. Last minute study everytime. She is right about these though. They look amazing!

  30. Eeeeek! I wish Arabella all the best for her exams (English and everything else). The next few weeks will be stressful but they DO go by really quickly (TOO quickly, imho).

  31. I think my son likes the adrenaline rush of having very little time to study because he does the same thing as Arabella. It drives me crazy.
    I know these kinds of tarts – they are fiddly but rewarding and photograph well, so worthwhile.

  32. justonecookbook says:

    I hope Arabell will do well on the exam! I am not a procrastinator but my husband is…. he is last minute but he does well (so he repeats this cycle). I’m too chicken to wait till last minute. I’ve never had grapefruits tart. That sounds amazing!

  33. Minnie Gupta says:

    My son drives me nuts too. He sits with his books, AND television open. When I enter the periphery, he simply lowers his head over the books. Last evening I caught him sitting in front of the TV when he was supposed to be doing his HW. I got mad. He told me he was doing it. How? There was no light, other than that of the TV screen! How exactly was he seeing what he was doing? grrrrrr. Talk about procrastinators.
    Those tarts look delicious, though they also sound a lot of work.

  34. I am sure Arabella will do fine.So many procrastinators do a lot better under pressure! You bake delicious goodies under pressure, Charlie! 🙂 I’ve never had a grapefruit tart, and these are beauties! I would enjoy baking something a bit unexpected. Thank you!

  35. Good luck to Arabella! I am learning not to procrastinate too much since I’ve had Leila, my daughter, but I do study better when I’m under pressure.. Like the night before the exam… 😛 by the way, I love that you have a “cost” section in your recipe, it’s very practical and useful for someone like me with a budget! 😉

  36. These are just up my alley. And my tree is still full of grapefruits (albeit not pink). These would be a great pick me up for a girl hard at study!

  37. I did this all through university. I’d pay attention during lectures and then cram all night before the exams. Then I’d sleep. It worked but I couldn’t do it now.

    These tarts look really good, Charlie, no wonder she liked them. I hope she does really well in her exams and then she should get TWO tarts.

  38. Lovely pinky tarts – I know exactly what you mean about pastry, it still seems an effort, in fact I can’t remember the last time I made some. Hope all is going well with the exams now, nothing like a good procrastinate, (the unconscious brain is working away underneath it all, one hopes) hugs Joanna

  39. Gorgeous tarts! How funny our kids are. Rush to get life going…don’t they know how quickly it all speeds by? Guess that’s a lesson they have to learn just like we did! 🙂

  40. Judy@Savoring Today says:

    “a little fiddly but delicious” — love how you succinctly describe the effort and the delight of the recipe 🙂 Honestly, it would hard not to procrastinate with these in the kitchen…

  41. I have to type quietly every night..
    I;m sure your daughter will do fine..
    They sure look good, I dont like grapefruit though, maybe i will make them with orange and chocolate sauce..
    I hope you;re ok Charlie, hugs and kisses!

  42. Wow, I wish people made more sweet treats with grapefruit! Those tarts sound soooo delicious, and look beautiful! Hugs, Terra

  43. Oh gosh. She is so close and these last few weeks must be so painful! I hope things go smoothly over the exam stretch. These tarts should help 🙂

  44. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says:

    You know I don’t think I’ve ever had grapefruit tarts before but they sound delightful! I mean lemon tarts work so beautifully so why not grapefruit! 🙂

  45. I don’t know why kids don’t study. I used to lock myself in my dining room when I had an exam and my girls, do nothing. They don’t even cram like Arabella, they do NOTHING. Yet somehow they pass…either they are really smart or our education system really does stink. These tarts are gorgeous. I never thought about putting grapefruit on them.

  46. GourmetGetaway says:

    These look so cute and delectable! You are so patient 🙂

  47. These are adorable tartlets! I hope that Arabella’s exams went well. I know a few procrastinators as well. 😉

  48. Jed Gray (sportsglutton) says:

    Glad my days of studying are over. 🙂

    Great use of it.

  49. Haha, this is so me! I would do ANYTHING to get out of studying. My favourite thing… “I can’t seem to buckle down to study so I’m going to design a study schedule”. Several hours later, I had the world’s most complex, colourful study schedule, but still hadn’t actually looked at any of my books 😀

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