Sweeet!!!

Making sweet tarts is one of the things that first got me into serious baking. People seemed to love them and although I was new to making pastry, I found the process really enjoyable.

Just when I thought I had perfected the art of good pastry, I moved from a nice dry climate back to the coast (and its humidity), changed ovens and lost my rhythm. Now I know a good cook doesn’t blame his or her tools but it definitely knocked my confidence. I have decided to be brave though and take a chance with this one…

This tart is inspired by a combination of childhood nostalgia and a search for texture. Milo is pretty much an Australian icon and although I’m not sure kids today enjoy it as much as they did when I was younger, it still has a permanent home in my pantry.

This makes a lovely dessert for a special occasion and aside from the pastry, it’s very easy. Just don’t think about the calories!

I prefer to make individual tarts but you could make this as a large tart, just be sure to let it set in the refrigerator for a good few hours and cut it with a hot knife.

A treat for Milo lovers…(serves 10-12)

Pastry
• 200gms chilled butter, cubed
• 250gms flour
• 100gms Milo
• 80gms cocoa
• 65ml cold water

Filling
• 250gms milk chocolate
• 115ml cream
• About 1 cup Milo
• 10-12 strawberries or raspberries

Coffee cream
• 2 shots expresso coffee, cooled
• 100mls cream
• 1 tbsp brown sugar

1. To make the pastry, combine the butter, flour, Milo and cocoa. Using your finger tips, rub the butter with the flour mixture until it resembles fine bread crumbs. Alternatively you can use a food process to do this part.
2. Add 2/3 of the water and combine until the mixture comes together to form a pliable dough. You may need to add the remainder but do this slowly, you don’t want too wet a dough.
3. On a floured board, knead until smooth. Wrap in cling wrap and rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
4. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Roll the pastry out until it is about 4mm thick and cut to fit 10cm tart tins (it should make about 10-12 with a little left over). Line the tart tins, pressing the dough into the corners and cutting off any excess pastry. Prick the bases with a fork and place in the freezer for about 10 minutes.
5. Line the tins with foil and use pie weights or uncooked rice to blind bake the tarts. Bake for about 25 minutes then remove the foil to check whether the tart bases are fully cooked. If they are still moist, return to the oven (without the foil and weights) for 3-5 minutes or until completely cooked. Leave to cool.
6. To make the filling or ganache, melt the chocolate over low heat in a metal or glass bowl resting over a saucepan of simmering water. Try not to let the water touch the bowl as the chocolate will seize, making it impossible to get smooth. Once the chocolate has began to melt, add the cream and stir until smooth. Pour into a jug and allow to cool for 5 minutes – you want a runny but manageable sauce.
7. Sprinkle the tart bases with a decent layer of Milo, pour over a thick layer of ganache and finish with a dusting of Milo. Top with a strawberry. Set in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
8. To make the coffee cream, whip the cream and brown sugar to the stage of soft peaks and fold through the cooled coffee. Serve with the tarts.

Happy eating!

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