I happen to be a big fan of the BBC Good Food magazine and their website. It’s a wonderful resource for me because living in the US, I don’t get much information on British food and despite the UK being on the butt end of foodie jokes, I think the British have great cuisine; it’s all seasonal and regional and I don’t think just one dish defines British food.
Unfortunately for me, I cannot subscribe to British food magazines. However, lucky for me, there is technology. Now I can subscribe to these magazines from my iPad and they are wirelessly delivered. I love technology. I do miss the feel of a paper magazine but I will take an electronic version if it means I can keep up with the seasonal food scene back home.
The e-versions are amazing though. They have beautiful HD pictures, all these cool and nifty ways to save recipes, share them, little windows that pop up with useful information. I love it.
I am bookmarking like crazy (they have a cool way to bookmark too.) There are so many things I want to try, things I grew up with but have forgotten. So, I am truly inspired now. If only I could get more hours in the day!
These tartlets are adapted from the BBC Good Food magazine. They used blackberries in theirs but I had raspberries. They were just as good. They didn’t include a recipe for the crust and advised using a shop bought one. I always make my own so I have included the recipe. The trickiest part of these tartlets is the pastry. There’s a lot of shaping and cooling and baking blind, then baking without the beans and then actually removing them from their tartlet pans. If you have the false bottom tartlet pans, great, I don’t, so I had the joy of prising out each tartlet with a pin. It wasn’t too bad but just a bit time-consuming.
The tartlets were a hit and everyone gobbled up theirs and then asked me why I didn’t make more! They were really good; creamy with a nice sweet-tart kick from the raspberries. The sweet cookie crust was a nice contrast against the creamy custard.
RASPBERRY CUSTARD TARTLETS
(Rose Levy Beranbaum’s excellent cookie crust, slightly adapted)
Makes enough for 7 4″(10cm) standard tartlet pans.
8 tablespoons/113g unsalted, cold butter in 1″ cubes
1/4 cup/50g superfine/caster sugar
11/2 cups/200g all-purpose/plain flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large egg yolk
2 tablespoons/28g heavy/double cream
Using a food processor pulse the sugar, salt and flour together, or if you are like me and broke your precious food processor, you can use a whisk to blend.
Add the butter pieces and pulse until they are broken into the flour and resemble big bread crumbs (or rub in with your fingers like I had to do)
Mix the egg yolk and cream together and add to the butter/ flour mixture. Pulse till it comes together but still crumbly or use your fingers.
Tip it out onto a clean counter and work the mixture gently into a cohesive ball.
Flatten into a disc and chill for up to 30 minutes. If you chill longer than 30 minutes then you will have to wait almost 40 minutes before it is pliable enough to roll out.
I was able to roll it out without difficulty after about 15 minutes of chill time.
Roll out the pastry to 1/16″ and cut out 6 51/2″ circles.
Gently line the tartlet pans with the pastry, leaving a little overhang.
Put in the freezer and chill for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 deg F/220 deg C.
I used baking beans on some parchment paper to blind bake the pastry so it wouldn’t puff up, but if your pastry is frozen in the tartlet pans, you can skip the beans. If the pastry does puff, just gently press down with your finger tips.
Place the tartlets in the oven for 5 minutes at 425 deg F/220 deg C and then lower the heat to 350 deg F/180 deg C and bake for another 5 minutes.
Take them out and let them cool slightly.
Lower the oven heat to 300 deg F/150 deg C
Meanwhile make your custard.
The original recipe seemed to make a lot of filling and there was plenty left over. I adjusted the recipe and there should be enough for 6 tartlets now.
1 large egg
1/4 cup/50g superfine/caster sugar
1/2 cup/100ml heavy/double cream
1/2 cup/100ml whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
6oz/8oz container raspberries
In a large bowl, beat the sugar and egg together, add the vanilla.
Heat the milk and cream together and bring to a boil.
Once the milk-cream mixture is hot, pour onto the sugar and egg mixture in a slow stream. Whisking continuously.
Strain through a sieve into a jug, for easy pouring.
Before filling up the pastry cases, trim the tops off the tartlets using a serrated knife to get a clean edge.
Put the tartlets on a baking sheet.
Divide the raspberries between the tartlets and pour on the custard.
Place the baking sheet with the tartlets into the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
They are done when the custard is firm but with a jiggly centre.
If you have false bottom tartlet pans, then let them cool and remove from the pans.
If you have one piece tartlet pans, when they are still warm, run a long pin or needle down the fluted edges and loosen up the pastry.
Let them then cool and then prise them out using a small spatula.
Once you get the hang of it, it goes pretty smoothly.