Garden rhubarb is now in full flood.... less attractive than the pretty pink early rhubarb, but just as versatile! I love this lattice tart as it keeps the rhubarb in place, without totally drowning it in pastry. The recipe was from the Telegraph, courtesy of Oliver Peyton. He's right, it is delicious! You do have to cook it quite well, though, as it can be a bit liquid, so there is a bit of a tendency to a soggy bottom... Nobody wants a soggy bottom, so the best way to avoid it is to bake it on a pre-heated sheet. Don't spoil this by using packet custard - make the real thing, it's nearly as quick!
|Rhubarb Lattice Tart|
12oz/350g shortcrust pastry (made with 8oz/220g flour/4oz/110g butter)
1lb/500g rhubarb, trimmed
7oz/200g caster sugar
2tbsp cornflour (I prefer to use 3tbsp)
Pinch of salt
Egg wash: 1 egg, few drops of milk
caster sugar for dusting
Grease a 9”/23cm plain edge tart tin (I prefer one with a removable base). Roll out half of the pastry so that it is large enough to fit in the tin with an overhanging edge. Shape the second half into a rectangle the length of the tart tin, wrap it in parchment and put it on a baking tray in the fridge, together with the lined tin.
Preheat the oven to 200 deg C and put a baking tray to heat. Cut the rhubarb into 1”/2.5cm pieces. Toss them in a bowl with the cornflour and caster sugar until they are well coated. Fill the chilled tart case.
Cut the rectangle of pastry into strips about ½”/1cm wide – they need to be quite thin or you will not have enough! Keep three strips to make a neat edge. Make a lattice pattern – put all the horizontal ones on first, fixing at one end, then peel back alternate strips (1,3,5,7). Put the first cross-wise piece on, fold the strips over and then peel back strips 2,4,6 and 8. Repeat until you reach the end…
Trim the edges and harvest any remaining pastry. Make up the egg wash – beat the egg, add a little milk - and then paint the lattice. Paint all round the edge, then add the remaining strips of pastry and paint those.
Place the tart on the pre-heated baking tray, with a piece of foil underneath the dish to catch any seeping liquid. Bake for 45-55 minutes, so that it is brown on the top. Oliver suggests leaving it to cool before transferring to a serving plate. We didn’t have time – it smelled so good it was eaten almost immediately! Dust with caster sugar and serve with lashings of custard AND ice cream.