Saturday, 22 September 2007

Citrus Season - II - Blood orange, lemon, Cointreau tart

I've just been to see Ratatouille - very cute, but for the really badly brought-up (dragged-up?) children who were unfortunately in the cinema. Since when was animation for kids anyway?

The second part of my citrusy series of blog posts is dessert. Having grabbed some blood oranges at South Melbourne market, and aware that I didn't want to use all of them in marmalade (of which more later), I decided to convert some into a tart.

The tart shell was made in a biscuity sort of way - creaming 100g butter with 50g caster sugar, then adding an egg and 220g "00" flour. It doesn't make for a particularly easy-to-handle dough, but the method is far easier on weary fingers than the normal pate brisee or pate sucree.

The case was blind baked in 9" springform tin, creating a deepish shell. I used the springform because, mystifyingly, I do not have a metal flan case (the horror, the horror). Ceramic moulds are hopeless.

The deepness of the case turned out to be a good thing.

Next came the filling - a lazy person's bastardised custard, comprising 330mL milk, three eggs, 40g caster sugar, the zest of two blood oranges, the zest of a lemon. In fact, I can't exactly remember what came next - but I think two or three blood oranges got squeezed, along with the lemon, and somewhere along the route this was added to the custard.

Unsurprisingly, this made for a very runny custard. Panicking, two tablespoons of cornflour went in. Eventually it thickened - and once it had cooled, a good splash of Cointreau went in.

The case was filled, the tart baked at 180˙C for about 45-50 minutes. It wobbled slightly, but wasn't runny.

Alas, by the time I took the picture, it had cracked. On the other hand, it tasted superb. Smooth, sweet, tangy, and - perhaps thanks to the Cointreau - more complex as the week progressed.
And as you can see, my photography skills leave a lot to be desired.

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