2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup shortening
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon white vinegar
2 Tablespoons cold water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup
1 Tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup raisins (optional, or can be replaced with chopped pecans or walnuts)
Blend the shortening and the flour with a pastry cutter, or two knives, until you've created a uniform mixture that is crumbly and about the size of frozen peas.
In a separate bowl, mix 1 egg, 1 tablespoon white vinegar and 2 tablespoons cold water. Add to shortening and flour mixture. Mix all ingredients together, but only until just mixed and no more.
The key to flaky pastry is not to over handle the dough. For ease of handling, make a ball of the dough, wrap in cellophane and place in freezer for 10 to 15 minutes. Roll out dough onto floured surface to about 1/4 inch thick. Using either a cookie cutter or something like a jar lid, cut out circles from the dough. Press dough circles into a muffin pan.
In another bowl, mix corn syrup, brown sugar, melted butter and egg. Add vanilla and stir in raisins. Spoon filling into pastry shell to just below the rim. Bake at 400 degrees F for about 10 minutes until golden brown.
Makes about a dozen tarts.