Ginger Brulee Tart
(Recipe adapted from Bourke Street Bakery cookbook)
Sweet crust pastry
125 g (4 oz) chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes
30 g (1 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
200 g (7 oz/11/3 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
pinch of salt
4 tablespoons chilled water
Ginger brûlée filling
400ml pouring cream
5cm piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cardamon pod, bruised
1 cinnamon stick
5 egg yolks
50 caster sugar, plus extra for burning
a handful of pistachio, toasted and chopped
1. To make the tart cases, put all the sweet crust pastry ingredients, except the water, into a food processor and pulse until it resembles breadcrumbs. Then add the water in a steady stream, and keep pulsing until it comes together and forms coarse clumps. Place the clumps on a floured surface and gently gather them to form a dough. Flatten the dough into a disc about 2 cm (3/4 inch) thick, then wrap in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
2. Remove the pastry from the refrigerator. Lightly dust the pastry, work surface and rolling pin with flour, then roll out the pastry to a 3 mm (1/8 inch) thickness. Using an 11 cm (41/4 inch) round pastry cutter, cut out 8 rounds from the pastry.
3. Line the individual tart tins with the pastry; use a ball of excess dough to gently push the pastry into the corners of the tins. Try not to stretch the pastry too much or it will shrink when baking. Once all the tart tins are lined with pastry, place them on a baking tray and transfer to the freezer to chill for 20 minutes, so the pastry holds its shape when baking.
4. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/Gas 6). Prick tart shells on the base with a fork, line the tart shells with baking paper, then fill with baking weights or grain or rice, transfer to the oven and blind bake the tart cases for 20–25 minutes, or until they are golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and let them cool a little before removing the blind baking materials and the tins.
5. To make the custard, put the cream into a saucepan over high heat and add the ginger, cardamom and cinnamon stick. As soon as it boils, remove from the heat, pour into a large bowl and cover with cling film. Let the flavour infuse for at least 4 hours, ideally overnight.
6. Place egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk to combine or until the sugar has dissolved. Reheat the infused cream in a saucepan over medium-high heat, remove from heat once it starts simmering. Pour a little bit of the warmed cream through a fine sieve into the egg mixture, quickly give the mixture a whisk so the egg doesn’t curdle. Then gently pour a little bit more of the cream and whisk it in, repeat until all the cream and egg mixture are well combined. Discard solids in the sieve.
7. Pour mixture back into the saucepan over low-medium heat, keep stirring with a wooden spatula until the custard thickens. Control the heat and make sure the custard doesn’t curdle, remove the saucepan from heat if is too hot, give it a stir to cool down then put it back on the heat. It will take around 20-30minutes, so please be patient and keep stirring. Dab the back of the wooden spoon on the custard, then draw a line using a finger, if custard doesn’t flow and cover the line, then it is thick enough and is ready. Remove from heat, set side to cool down completely.
8. Place the tart cases on a tray, and spoon the custard into each case until it is filled to the brim. Use a palette knife to spread and level the custard. Place the tarts in fridge to set until ready to serve.
9. Before serving, sprinkle about 1 tablespoon caster sugar over the top of each tart and burn with a blowtorch to caramelise the top. Sprinkle a few pistachios on top.