Food: (Rustic) egg custard tarts

 
Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

I'm calling these Rustic egg custard tarts because they didn't come out looking as pretty as I'd hoped. However they taste so amazing so I couldn't not share the recipe. The pastry is chewy and crisp at the same time and is swirled with cinnamon and nutmeg which gives the tarts a lovely flavour.

The recipe is adapted from one by Jamie Oliver and is fairly straight forward. The trickiest bit I found was making the custard. There are no pictures of me making the custard because it's a touch difficult continuously stirring and taking photos - my hand isn't steady enough at the best of times.

You can probably make your tarts less rustic looking by greasing your trays. I assumed that the puff pastry would be oily enough to not stick - but I didn't take into account the sugar and spices which added to its stickiness. A quick brush with melted butter or vegetable oil would have made a big difference I think.

To make these egg custard tarts you will need:

A block of ready made puff pastry (see why I don't make my own here) 1 egg yolk 4 tbsp caster sugar 1 tsp ground cinnamon A light grating of nutmeg

For the custard 3 large organic eggs 4 dsp caster sugar 1/2 tsp vanilla paste (or the seeds from one vanilla pod) 1/2 pt (285mls) double cream

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

Method: Preheat the oven to 200c. Roll out your pastry into a rough rectangle on a floured surface.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

Brush with beaten egg yolk and then sprinkle over the sugar, cinnamon and a light grating of nutmeg.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

Roll the pastry up like a swiss roll (in the same way we did the cinnamon rolls) and then slice into roughly 1.5 cm pieces. It should make about 12.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

Turn the pastry swirls end up and squash slightly with the palm of your hand. On a floured surface with a floured rolling pin roll out the pastry until it's a circle about 2mm thick. Keep your rolling pin floured or the oozy cinnamon sugar filling sticks all over it and you have a big old mess.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

If you're sensible then you'll grease your bun tin with a little oil or butter before placing a circle in each mould. You need to ease them in gently, carefully folding and tucking the edges into a rough frill so that they sit on the bottom of their alotted mould. You should have a pastry frill sticking up proud of each dip.

I was so excited by how pretty they looked that I totally forgot to take a picture - which I was very cross about. But now I've moved on. Marvel at how pretty yours look with their swirly bottoms and frilly edges before putting them in the oven for 15 minutes.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

When they come out of the oven all crisp and golden brown allow them to cool in their tins for a few minutes. Once cool enough to touch use your thumb (washed of course) or a small teaspoon to gently push down the middle again. The pastry puffs up a lot in the oven so you need to make room to squeeze in your custard.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

While the tarts cool fully make your custard. Whisk your eggs, sugar and vanilla together until well mixed. Meanwhile heat up your cream until nearly boiling. Add it in a gradual stream to the egg mix, whisking briskly all the time for about 30 seconds.

Pour it back into the pan over a medium heat and stir constantly. I switched between and whisk and a spatula to make sure I wasn't getting scrambled egg on the bottom of the pan. It gradually thickens and took about 6 minutes or so to reach a nice dollop-able texture. You need to be able to spoon it into your pastry cases without fear of it running out.

Egg Custard Tarts
Egg Custard Tarts

Spoon into your cases and leave to set - or at least cool down a little - before you dig in.

I hope you enjoy them. Remember if you want to share pictures of anything you make following one of my craft step by steps or recipes you can do it over on my facebook page, or tag me on instagram or twitter.