With Valentine’s Day round the corner, maybe it’s time to get busy in the kitchen and bake some sweet desserts for your loverboy!

INGREDIENTS

Pastry

  • 1/4 lb butter, cold, chopped into pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 egg yolks

Custard

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup milk (full fat)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping

  • 3/4 cup apricot jam
  • Various fresh fruits (or canned)

PROCEDURES

1. To make pastry: Using fingertips, rub butter into flour until mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in sugar and egg yolks, press mixture together to form a ball and refrigerate in plastic wrap for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).

2. Meanwhile, make custard: In medium bowl, whisk egg yolks, sugar and flour until the mixture turns thick and pale.

Then, heat the milk in saucepan until it is almost boiling, remove from heat. Slowly dribble in hot milk into egg mixture, whisking continuously, until all of milk has been added. Return custard to pot and cook, over medium-low heat, until custard has thickened and coats the back of a spoon (5-7 minutes). Place piece of plastic wrap directly onto surface of custard (this prevents a ‘skin’ from forming) and allow to cool completely.

3. Roll pastry between two sheets of wax paper, making the pastry large enough to cover base and sides of a buttered 9-inch fluted tart pan.

i) Place sheet of foil into pastry and fill with pie weights (we used rice grains).  Trim edges of the foil.

ii) Bake for 20-25 minutes. Then, remove the foil and rice grains from the pastry and bake a further 5 minutes.

iii) Allow the pastry to cool.

4. To assemble: Spoon custard into baked pie crust and smooth. Place pieces of fruit attractively over the tart. Heat apricot jam until it is quite liquid and brush this generously over the fresh fruit to set and seal the tart. Refrigerate the tarts.

Voila!



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