Redcurrant Tart

Food writing has changed my life in more ways than one. When I used to write for the blog, people didn't pay much attention, dinner invitations where coming loosely and freely.

Enter the magazines. It was a little bit more difficult to get invited. Sort of "shall we invite her or not? Will the food be good enough or not?". Needless to say it didn't make any difference to me, good or disastrous, I am always happy to be invited.
Then came the books and now my face is being scrutinised at every mouthful. One of my friends, cleverly got round the problem. Having invited us, she emailed her main ingredient for pudding and asked for the best recipe I could think of.  
The onus was on me, if it all went wrong then it would be my fault. As cooking with redcurrants is not something I do everyday, I had a moment of panic. I almost suggested that she used bananas instead and make my famous Banoffee tartlets. But I knew that there were no banana growing in her Cambridge's allotment.
Red currants are indeed very pretty. They are also incredibly tart which makes these shiny little berries  rather difficult to accommodate. At the end, I opted for couple recipes of the same dessert. The pudding was a triumph, declared by her partner, "As good as the Banoffee pie" which I would have shared with you if it hadn't been devoured before I had time to grab my camera.
Redcurrant Tart
For the sweet pastry 
  • 200g  plain flour
  • 100g  butter
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 medium egg
In a mixer add flour, butter and sugar until it resembles breadcrumbs, add the egg when you get a dough stop mixing. Roll it up in a Clingfilm. Leave it in the fridge to rest until you are ready to use it, minimum 30 minutes.

Tip: don't use a roller on sweet pastry, you are going to end up with a mess. Use the palm of your hand to flatten it and push it with your thumbs. Repeat.

For the filling:

  • 340g  almond paste or marzipan (ideally 50 per cent almonds if available)
  • 100g butter, softened
  • 100g  plain flour
  • 6 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 300g • 11oz redcurrants, rinsed and de-stalked

  • Stalk the redcurrants, reserve
    Put all the ingredients in the mixer bowl and blitz until smooth, transfer to a bow and add the currants without breaking them

    arrange the pastry into tart mould, bake blind for 15 minutes 200C/180C fan/gas 6. 
    Remove from oven, leave it to cool add the mixture and cook for 25 minutes, it will rise. Leave it to cool before sieving icing sugar (optional) 



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