Rhubarb and Custard Cassonade Tarts

A crisp caramel brulée finishes off Paul Bloxham's fruity custard tarts
By Paul Bloxham
Rhubarb and Custard Cassonade Tarts
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

  • 400 g sweet shortcrust pastry

For the rhubarb filling

  • 500 g rhubarb, chopped
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 1 vanilla pod, split
  • 125 ml orange juice

For the custard

  • 300 ml milk
  • 200 ml double cream
  • 3 large free-range eggs
  • 2 free-range egg yolks
  • 100 g caster sugar

For the brulée

  • 75 g caster sugar
  • 75 g demerara sugar
  • 75 g icing sugar

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 190C/gas 5.

2. Grease 4 x 10cm tart tins.

3. Roll out the pastry and use it to line the tart tins. Prick the bottom of the pastry cases lightly with a fork. Put a piece on non-stick baking parchment on the base and weigh down with baking beans. Bake the pastry 'blind' for 10 minutes without colouring the edges then remove the atrt cases from the oven. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C/gas 3.

4. For the rhubarb filling: put the rhubarb in a pan with the caster sugar, split vanilla pod and orange juice. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes or until the rhubarb is tender but still in pieces. Remove with a slotted spoon into the pastry cases. Reserve the juices.

5. For the custard: in another pan, bring the milk and cream nearly to the boil.

6. Beat the eggs, yolks and sugar together in a bowl and pour the hot milk over them and beat gently.

7. Pour the custard mixture into the pastry cases on top of the rhubard and bake for 40 minutes until just set. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.

8. For the brulée: mix the sugars together and sprinkle over the individual tarts. Caramelise with a blowtorch.

9. Serve the tarts with the remaining rhubarb juices.

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