Thursday, February 21, 2008

Date & Orange Pie

: (serves 6)
9 oz plain flour
4 oz pure icing sugar
4 oz unsalted butter, chilled
1 egg
16 fresh dates, pitted, halved
5 egg yolks
3.5 oz caster sugar
2 cups cream
1 orange, zested

Cardamom syrup:
10 green cardamom pods
1 orange, zested
6 oranges, juiced
1 cup caster sugar
2-3 tbs brandy

Preheat oven to 375 F. Place flour and icing sugar in a food processor and process to combine. Add butter and process until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add egg and process until a smooth ball.
Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll out pastry on a floured surface and use to line a 10 inch pie pan with removable base. Line pastry with baking paper and fill with rice or pastry weights. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove paper and weights and return to oven for 10 minutes until crisp and golden. Place halved dates in pastry case.
Reduce oven temperature to 325 F. Beat egg yolks and caster sugar in a bowl until combined. Stir in cream, then strain. Stir in zest and pour over dates. Bake for 30 minutes or until just set. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, to make the syrup, use a mortar and pestle or rolling pin to lightly crush cardamom pods. Remove seeds and discard pod. Place seeds in a pan with remaining ingredients and cook over low heat, stirring, to dissolve sugar. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool before serving with the tart.

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