There are a million ways to make a milk pie – baked or unbaked, with a traditional puff pastry crust, a sweet shortcrust pastry, a no-bake butter cookie crust, or no crust at all, with or without vanilla and almond extract – the list is endless. Get creative and treat yourself to a glass of Roodeberg Rosé while cooking.
“The floral notes of the Rosé playfully echo the aromas of almond, vanilla and citrus in the filling of the milk tart. It’s an unusual and fun combination,” says Ilse van der Merwe, a well-known food writer at www.thefoodfox.com.
For Milk Tart Day, Ilse opted for a simple recipe that offers lots of flavor and texture. Her silky stovetop milk pie with a buttery baked crust is infused with vanilla, almond essence, cinnamon and lemon zest. To continue the tradition, Ilse suggests using an old-fashioned enamel plate for baking and decorating the top with cinnamon using ornate stencils.
The recipe for Ilse van der Merwe’s milk pie
(For 1 tart of 22 cm)
You will need: For the crust – 1 ½ cups cake flour; 1/3 cup powdered icing sugar; 1/4 teaspoon of salt; 125 g cold butter cut into cubes; 1 X large egg yolk; 1 tablespoon of ice water.
For the filling – 2 cups of whole milk; 2 tablespoons of butter; 2 strips of lemon zest, finely peeled (optional); 1 cinnamon stick (optional); ½ cup cream (or replace with more milk); ½ cup) sugar; 2 large eggs; 3 tablespoons of corn flour (Maizena); 2 tablespoons of cake flour; 5 ml of vanilla extract; 2 ½ ml almond essence; 1-2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, for sprinkling.
How? ‘Or’ What:
For the filling:
Place the milk, butter, lemon zest and cinnamon stick in a saucepan on the stove over medium heat. While it is heating, place the cream, sugar, eggs, cornstarch, cake flour, vanilla and almond essence in a bowl and mix well with an electric mixer.
When the milk mixture begins to boil, remove the pan from the heat and remove the cinnamon zest and stick. Now pour the cream and egg mixture into the hot infused milk, stirring continuously. Return the pan to medium heat and stir continuously until the mixture begins to thicken (2-3 minutes).
Reduce the heat to very low and continue to stir until the mixture is very smooth, thick and glossy (1-2 minutes) – taking care not to let the bottom burn. Remove from the heat and pour into the cooked pie shell.
Smooth the top and let cool to room temperature. To use the stencil: gently place it on top of the cooled pie, then sift cinnamon all over to reveal the design. Lift the stencil and serve at room temperature. Store in the refrigerator, covered, for up to three days.
For the dough
Spray a 22cm tart pan/pie dish with non-stick spray and set aside. Place the flour, icing sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the butter and mix until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Add the yolk and cold water and continue mixing on low speed until it starts to form lumps. Unmold into pan and press evenly in a thin layer all over (you may not need all the batter). Prick everything with a fork and place in the freezer.
Now preheat your oven to 190°C with the rack in the middle while the dough firms up. After 20 minutes, transfer the cold pan to the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven to cool while you prepare the filling.
Point: If your custard mixture seems to have thickened with a few clots, use an electric mixer to fluff it up before pouring it into the prepared base. It’s quite forgiving!
Roodeberg Classic Rosé 2021 is available at major stores nationwide or at the Roodeberg Emporium at around R85 a bottle. For online sales, visit kwvemporium.co.za