Hibiscus and orange custard tart

Hibiscus and orange custard tart

By
From
The Herb & Flower Cookbook
Serves
6-8
Cooking time
65 mins

Hibiscus flowers are surprisingly tangy and have a sharpness that works just as well with meat as in desserts. Mexicans use them in enchiladas, but I like them to spice up the traditional English custard tart, the softness of the pie filling taking well to their zesty zing. Plus they look pretty, too, which is always a bonus when you’re showing off for guests.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
flour, for dusting
500g shortcrust pastry

For the filling

Quantity Ingredient
300ml milk
200ml double cream
1 orange, finely zested
2 teaspoons orange blossom water
or 1/2 orange, juiced
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
100g sugar
6 hibiscus flowers

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the pastry until thin and about 22 x 22 cm. Shuffle your hands under the pastry, palms facing up and fingers spread wide and transfer it to a 20 cm round tin. Press it into the edges and roll the rolling pin over the top to cut off any excess. Cover the pastry with a circle of baking paper and weigh it down with baking beans, dried pasta or rice and blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove the paper and weights and returning the pastry to the oven for another 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  2. Place all of the filling ingredients except for the hibiscus flours in a large saucepan and set the pan over a medium heat, stirring constantly as the sugar dissolves. Gradually bring the mixture to the boil and let thicken slightly – after 3–4 minutes of simmering it should coat the back of a spoon. Pour into the pastry case. Float the flowers on top of the custard and bake the tart in the oven for 40 minutes, until the custard is golden and set. Serve it hot or cold, with cream or ice cream.

Substitute the hibiscus with...

  • Lavander, rose or rosemary.
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