Just back from Italy!
I spent Easter with my parents in Friuli in Northern Italy and then I went down to Rome for a few days (photos to follow very soon!).
It has been a really nice break although the weather has been quite rainy and not that warm for this time of year. That did not stop me having lots of ice creams every single day though, how can you possibly resist the lure of freshly made Italian ice cream!
Rome was fantastic but I will tell you all about it very soon. For now I am sharing this fresh strawberry tart (crostata di fragole) with custard. I have actually made the custard a little lighter by using almond milk instead of cow's milk.
I made a similar tart when I was in Italy. My mum bought a basket of fabulous Sicilian strawberries from our local Sicilian greengrocer and I could not resist making a nice tart.. so delicious! Nothing beats strawberries and in spring, after a long cold winter, we all crave for fresh fruit and vegetables. The grayness of winter is finally over! Yay!
- Prep Time : 30 minutes
- Cook Time : 25 minutes
- Yield : 6
- For the pastry:
- plain flour - 250 g - 2 cups + 2 tbsp + extra to sprinkle
- eggs - 2
- butter - 90 g - ⅓ cup
- vanilla essence - 1 tsp
- sugar - 80 g - 3/8 cup
- For the custard and decoration
- milk (almond or cow's milk) - 500 ml - 1 + 1/2 fl oz
- sugar - 50 g - 1/4 cup
- egg yolks - 3
- rice flour - 30 g - slightly less than 1/4 cup
- lemon zest - of 1 unwaxed lemon
- strawberry or red fruit jam - 2 tbsp
- fresh strawberries - 350 g - 1 + 1/2 cup
On your worktop mix the flour with the eggs, the sugar, the vanilla, the butter and form a smooth ball then wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Sprinkle some flour on your worktop. With a rolling pin roll the pastry and place it on a greased round baking tray of a diameter of approx 25 cm or 10 inch. Add a little extra flour if the pastry is still very sticky. Prick it with a fork all around the base.
Bake it for 15 to 20 minutes at 180C or 350F until lightly golden.
In the meantime make the custard: heat the milk until just boiling. Whip the egg yolks with the sugar until pale and creamy. Add the lemon zest and the corn flour and mix well. Slowly add the warm milk whilst mixing all the time then bring to the boil over a low heat until it thickens.
Let the pastry cool down, spread the jam all over the base and spread the custard on top.
Wash and slice the strawberries and place them on top of the custard. You can use fresh flowers to decorate if you like.
Store in the fridge.