We're baaa-aaaack! It's been a minute, we know, but between the two of us, we've been on holiday, moved across continents, eaten our way through a few cities, and had lots and lots of quality time with our families. Now that we're settled (back) in our own homes - albeit in different countries versus the same town (sniff sniff) - we're raring to go to bring you more delicious recipes, and we'll even share some of our travel stories - how 'bout that?!
As summer is bringing us blueberries by the truckload, we‘ve created these Mini Blueberry Tarts with Lemon-Lavender Pastry Cream! They were featured on the Villeroy & Boch blog as part of a Tea Time Story we did. The custard is refreshing and pairs so well with those plump blueberries. If you can’t find the time (or inclination, it is summer after all), some whipped cream or vanilla yogurt would also work beautifully. So pinkies up, lovelies, and let's get baking!
Blueberry Tarts with Lemon & Lavender Pastry Cream
For the tart shells:
1 sheet of Puff Pastry, defrosted if frozen
2 tablespoons raw sugar (or Demerara Sugar)
For the pastry cream:
1 egg yolk
2/3 cup (125 g) sugar
1/4 cup flour (30 grams)
1/4 cup (35 g) cornstarch or arrowroot
a pinch of salt
2 cups (475 ml) whole milk
2 teaspoons lavender buds
Rind of 1 lemon, peeled with a vegetable peeler
For the top:
Blueberries or any fruit you fancy!
Preheat the oven to 400F and prepare a mini muffin tin with a non-stick baking spray.
Unroll or unfold the puff pastry and sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sugar over the pastry. Lightly press down the sugar. Cut the pastry into small squares, measuring about 3x3 inches each. Press the squares into the mini muffin tin. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown. The little pastry crusts are likely to puff up in the oven. Use the end of a rolling pin or wooden spoon to press it down whilst they're still hot. Allow the tart cases to cool for 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. These can be made a day ahead, simply store in an airtight container until ready to use.
To make the pastry cream, combine the eggs, egg yolk and sugar in a large bowl. Add the flour, cornstarch and salt and mix well with a whisk until the mixture is nice and thick.
In a large saucepan, heat the milk with the lavender buds and lemon rind until hot. You don’t
want it to boil, but it should be letting off a little steam. Have a strainer ready over a heat proof jug or bowl, and strain out the lavender and lemon. Pour a little bit (a one-second pour) of the hot milk into the egg mixture whilst whisking. Pour in a little more and whisk away, before slowing adding the rest of the milk in a steady stream, whisking all the while.
Pour the custard into a clean saucepan, and whisk over a low-medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken. Make sure you get that whisk into all the edges so that the mixture doesn’t burn in the pan, or create clumps. (If you end up with clumps, no problem, just push the custard through a sieve at the end.) When it has the consistency of a nice, thick pastry cream (a spoonful should be able to hold its shape) you can stop whisking (finally!) and pour it into a clean bowl. Place a sheet of unwaxed parchment paper or plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming, then refrigerate until cool.
To assemble the tarts, simple dollop a bit of pastry cream into each tart shell and top with fresh blueberries. Enjoy with a lovely cup of Earl Grey Tea and a friend!