Rhubarb tart.jpg

Rhubarb tart

This show-stopping tart takes time to make but the results are oh so worth it! Ideal for a weekend baking project that’s sure to impress family and friends.

How long will it take?

4 ½ hours including chilling time

What’s the serving size?

Serves 6-8


What do I need?

  • 700g rhubarb
  • 1 vanilla pod, seeds removed and reserved
  • 50g caster sugar
  • Juice of half a lemon

For the tart base

  • 180g plain flour
  • 55g icing sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 115g cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the crème patisserie

  • 250ml full cream milk
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 100ml thickened cream

How do I make it?

For the tart base

  1. Pulse flour, icing sugar, and salt in a food processor for a few seconds until combined.
  2. Add butter and pulse until mixture becomes crumbly.
  3. Add egg and vanilla pulse until the dough starts to clump together. Do not over-process the dough; you want a crumbly mix rather than a large ball.
  4. Turn dough to a lightly floured surface and form into a ball. Flatten ball a little with your hands to form a thick disc. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  5. Remove dough from fridge and let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes; this will make it easier to roll. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into circle that is 5 centimetres larger than the tart pan you are using. Roll dough to be about 1.5mm thick.
  6. Place dough into greased and floured tart tin (with a removable bottom) and use a sharp knife to trim the excess dough from the edges so that the pastry fits the tart pan. Place tart pan in the freezer until the dough is firm, about 30 minutes; this stops the dough shrinking during cooking.
  7. To bake preheat oven to 190C.
  8. Press baking paper or aluminum foil tightly against the crust, covering the edges to prevent them from burning. Fill with pie weights or uncooked rice, making sure they’re evenly distributed over the entire surface.
  9. Bake crust for 35 minutes. Transfer crust to a wire rack to cool and remove weights and foil.

For the rhubarb

  1. Prepare rhubarb by cutting into 3 centimetre pieces. For best presentation, try to use pieces that are the same width.  
  2. Put the vanilla pod, sugar, lemon juice and enough water to just cover the rhubarb in a wide frying pan over a low heat.
  3. When the sugar has fully dissolved, add the rhubarb and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool in the syrup, preferably overnight, or for at least 1 hour. This will ensure the rhubarb is perfectly cooked, but still holding its shape.

For the crème patisserie

  1. Make the crème patisserie by heating the milk and vanilla seeds in a saucepan over a medium heat until nearly boiling. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks, sugar, cornflour and flour together in a large bowl until pale. Keep whisking while you pour the hot milk over the egg mixture. Clean saucepan and strain the liquid back into the saucepan through a sieve. Heat over a medium-low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture has a thick custard consistency. Scrape into a clean bowl, cover the surface with beeswax wrap or cling film to prevent a skin from forming and chill in fridge for at least 1 hour.
  2. Remove the rhubarb from their syrup and set aside. Heat the pan with the syrup until it comes to the boil. Allow to boil until the syrup is thick. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. To finish the crème patisserie, whisk cream to soft peak stage and fold through the chilled mixture.
  4. Remove the pastry case from the tin and put on a serving plate. Fill with the crème patisserie. Place rhubarb pieces on top, trimming if necessary to get a good coverage. Use a pastry brush to glaze the tart with the rhubarb syrup. Chill for 30 minutes before serving.

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