Traditional Custard Tarts
We are divided in this household. There are the milk drinkers and then there’s Mr LP, my texturally sensitive husband who shudders at anything smooth and creamy unless it’s chocolate flavoured or frozen*
This rules out yoghurt, cream, plain milk, any form of panna cotta or crème brulee, and also custard. But he will happily eat a tub of Maggie Beer’s burnt fig, honeycomb and caramel ice cream!
Being a girl who eats pretty much anything, it took me a while to understand his kooky tastebuds. He also doesn’t do bananas. I know! So weird.
Master N and I love bananas and all forms of dairy so when Mr LP was away for a few days last week at a conference, I made us a batch of custard tarts. Recipe below.
With my friand making schedule, I usually have an abundance of egg yolks around and this recipe makes good use of them.
I like the Portugese variety, but I still don’t think you can beat a traditional custard tart with short, biscuity pastry, soft creamy custard and a sprinkle of nutmeg on top.
It made my kitchen smell like a retro cake shop. Like the one Mum used to visit on Saturday mornings to buy us custard tarts for morning tea after netball.
These little tarts are two or three bites worth, made in a 12-hole muffin tin. Feel free to use larger pie tins if you are after a more generous tart.
My one tip is to fill the custard to the brim of each tart shell as it will deflate a little when resting out of the oven.
Enjoy! They are perfect for morning or afternoon tea on these early winter days.
Is anyone in your circle (or you) squeamish about certain foods?
*But not yoghurt. Never yoghurt.
Traditional Custard Tarts
(Recipe is a combination of Jamie Oliver’s sweet shortcrust pastry in “Jamie At Home” and Luke Mangan’s custard in “At Home and In the Mood” with my own additions and measurement tweaks).
Makes at least a dozen
For tart shells:
250g plain flour
50g icing sugar
125g cold butter, cubed
Dash of milk
2 egg yolks
½ tsp quality vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
60g caster sugar
Ground nutmeg to sprinkle
Preheat oven to 180C.
Place sifted flour and icing sugar in a food processor.
Add butter and process until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Lightly whisk together the egg and milk. Add to the processor and pulse until the mixture just comes together as dough.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface and shape it gently into a thick disk (do not knead it).
Cover in cling wrap and refrigerate for 30 mins.
Roll pastry dough out on a lightly floured surface to even 1.5mm thickness. Use a medium-sized fluted cookie cutter to cut out tart rounds and place into a 12-hole muffin tin.
Blind bake the tart shells using baking paper and baking weights or rice for 10 mins.
While the tarts are in the oven, prepare the custard by lightly beating eggs and egg yolks together, taking care not to produce any air bubbles. Stir in cream, milk, sugar and vanilla.
Leave the mixture to rest so there are no air bubbles.
When the tart shells have been blind baked, remove the baking paper and weights.
Reduce oven temperature to 160C.
Give the custard a gentle stir and then slowly pour it into tart shells, filling to the rim. Sprinkle each with a little nutmeg before very carefully returning to the oven for 20 minutes or until custard is just set.
Allow to cool before removing from trays.
Eat one warm. You won’t regret it!