How do you feel if I say that "CAKE MATTERS"? There are different ways of going around dull and dark days and one of them is to indulge and sweeten yourself up by buying one of the cakes you most fancy or.. as a proper therapy to make them yourself too.
Let me introduce you to a treat made of a generous layer of silky lemony creme patisserie in between two crunchy biscuits with the nutty bite of hazelnuts for a touch of luxury.
It is half term holiday and I need to keep my children busy: baking biscuits, making pasta, helping make risotto, laying the table, loading the dishwasher.. soon they will be doing the hoovering too! All good manual skills which seem to have no importance these days; I think they are highly educational.
Today we baked. Please do try these biscuits, they are simple to make and they resemble in taste the patisserie you would buy in a proper bakery.
For the pastry:
130 g self raising flour
3 tbsp oil
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp icing sugar
For the custard:
300 ml full fat milk
2 tbsp flour
1 lemon organic or unwaxed
3 egg yolks
80 g sugar
a dash of brandy or rum
to finish off:
- Prep Time : 45 minutes
- Cook Time : 20 minutes
On your worktop put the flour, egg, vanilla extract, sugar and oil. Combine the ingredients well with a fork
Now with your hands shape it into a smooth ball. If it feels sticky wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes
With a rolling pin flatten the pastry about 5 mm thick and with a pastry cutter make about 30 small circles
Line them up well on a baking tray over a piece of baking paper or over a silicone baking sheet (I recommend it! It is so handy to have in the kitchen!)
Cook at 170C for about 10 minutes or until slightly golden.
In the meantime make the custard by whipping the yolks with the sugar. They should look pale and creamy. Now add the flour and stir it well in.
Wash and dry the lemon and peel the zest with a knife. Bring the milk to the boil with the lemon zest. Take the zest out and slowly pour the milk over the egg mixture whilst stirring all the time
Put it over a source of heat and cook gently whilst stirring all the time until the sauce has thickened (this will take about 10 minutes). Add the liquor during the last couple of minutes of cooking.
Toast the chopped nuts in a pan for a few minutes. Now let's assemble the biscuits: with a syringe or with a teaspoon put some cooled down custard over one biscuit
Cover with another biscuit just like a sandwich and roll it into the nuts
Finish off with a sprinkle of icing sugar