I didn't get many berries, but enough to turn into a pudding and make the kids feel cherished (perhaps) after their second day at school. They seemed to be knackered already after their first day back. I should be used to this by now - it happens every start of term, never more so than after the 6 week break, but it's hard going. The Husband had been away since Monday morning as well, so the kids were missing him as well as trying to settle into their new routine.
Good then, that tea was a big hit on a number of levels. We had crispy potatoes (thinly sliced, new-ish potatoes, par-boiled, then roasted on a baking tray with a sprinkling of sea salt, olive oil and crushed garlic in a hot oven till crispy) green & runner beans and poached eggs, all of which came from the garden (smug meal - sorry!).
I based the tarts on a recent Good Food recipe, but as usual made a few little changes. I couldn't find the original on their website so I can't link, but it was in the September 2012 issue.They are very, very good.
300g shortcrust pastry
cherry jam (which is what I had to hand - raspberry would be nice, or blackberry if you have some)
100g soft butter
100g caster sugar
100g ground almonds
1tbsp plain flour plus extra for rolling out the pastry
1 large egg
drop of almond extract
blackberries - I used about 60
a handful of flaked almonds
Pre-heat the oven to 200C/180 fan/gas 6.
Flour your work surface and roll out the pastry. Using an 8-9cm cutter (or the top of a pint glass, like I did), cut out 12 rounds and use to line a 12 hole bun tray. Put about 1/2 tsp of jam into the bottom of each case.
|You'll notice how I go for the 'rustic' look...|
Beat together the butter, sugar and ground almonds, add in the egg, almond extract and flour and continue to beat together till light and fluffy.
Divide the mixture between the cases - it's quite tight but you'll get about a heaped tsp, maybe a little more to each case. Press the blackberries gently into the top of the mixture - I used 4-5 per tart as they weren't huge - if you buy them you'll probably get bigger fruit so will need fewer - and sprinkle over the flaked almonds. Bake for 15-20 minutes till lightly golden.
Allow to cool and dust with icing sugar to serve if desired (pretty cake stand optional, but I got this for my birthday earlier this year and decided I hadn't used it enough - and isn't it LOVELY??).