Monday, 3 October 2011

Apple Pie and Egg Tart - Korean Style

Last weekend was round two at the Masan Shinsegae Cookery Academy. This time we were making apple pies and egg tarts. There were five of us foreigners, Helen came along to translate and two of my coworkers joined us alongside three or four other ladies. The teacher seemed pleased to see us and she said she was happy to see some familiar faces. She's a lovely lady and the language barrier did not prevent her skills as a helpful and practical teacher.
We cracked on with the hands on aspects and began to mix the pastry. There was a short word on the difference between pies and tarts more info here if your interested. We made the same pastry dough for both desserts to save on time. The recipe involved mixing flour, salt and a little sugar and lightly rubbing cold butter into the dry ingredients. We added some cold water and placed everything into a plastic bag to be cooled for 30 mins in the fridge while we prepared the fillings. The key to the pastry is apparently to keep the butter cold.

Betty adding the cold butter

Kez and Tina my coworkers

Me slicing my apples

 We began slicing the apples into small pieces and then cooked them in butter. We added sugar, cinnamon and rum to the pan and waited for the water from the apples to reduce into a syrup. I was really enjoying the class at this point. Although I have made a fair few apple pies and have watched my Nana make them for years, the challenge was making it in a Korean kitchen which made me feel like a complete novice! The Korean recipe instructions, some added surprises like a dash of rum and the practical hints and tips we were picking up definitely made things interesting as did cooking with my coworkers Betty and Tina! They are so funny!

We prepped the tins and then rolled out the pastry. I was a little surprised when the teacher told me to roll it out inside the plastic bag. I think this was a mess saving approach but quite frankly I did not agree with the plastic bag and it did not agree with my pastry. It was a very frustrating and it seemed to make the pastry stick more! What I would have given for a wooden rolling board and some flour! But when in Korea.....

Ready to bake
We cut the pastry disks and laid them into the tin cases, spiking them on the bottom with a fork. We filled them with the cooled apples and decorated them with the extra pastry. We also made the egg tarts using a sugar water, egg yolks, vanilla and milk mixture which we had watched being made during a demonstartion. The teacher added a little salt in there, too. The excess pastry was rolled out as shortbread. Delicious!

My finished pies

My finished tarts

I was happy with my results, we sat around for an hour waiting for the pastries to be baked in two batches and it was nice to natter about our experience! Ruta and Betty made some delicious tarts, everyone seemed pleased. It was a morning well spent.

I will definitely be looking into more cooking classes, right now Helen and I are discussing a tailor-made Korean cookery class for the foreigners like myself and Helen is going to be contributing to classes as translator for some time to come which is great news!

 If you are interested in taking classes at Masan Shinsegae Cooking Academy or want more details about the recipes in this blog then please drop me a comment. :)


  1. Ah I'm curious and would love to try a class. Where can I get more info?

    1. Hi Pixie, The Shinsegae Academies are all located in Shinsegae department stores around Korea. The Masan department store academy is located on the 5F. There should be a new season catalogue available. Classes are around 10-20,000KRW including ingredients and last around 2 hours. Info about the location of the Masan branch can be found here;