Rhubarb and chamomile tart
SERVES 12 // PREP TIME 45 MINS // COOK 50 MINS (PLUS RESTING)
“Rhubarb is one of the few sweet ingredients available in spring,” says Dunn. “Its natural sourness adds an acid balance to the sugar and cuts through the sweetness, creating the perfect foil for custard. We grow chamomile and dry the flowers, but you can buy whole dried chamomile flowers; even chamomile teabags will give the desired result.”
250 ml (1 cup) pouring cream 3 tbsp chamomile flowers 60 gm butter, melted
165 gm (¾ cup) caster sugar 1 tbsp plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 egg yolk
250 ml (1 cup) well-shaken buttermilk
1 tbsp white vinegar
315 gm plain flour
175 gm cold unsalted butter, cut into 2cm pieces 60 gm caster sugar
1 egg yolk
700 gm rhubarb stalks, cut into 15cm-20cm lengths
100 gm caster sugar
Zested rind and juice of 1 orange
1 For pastry, place flour, butter, sugar and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Rub butter into dry ingredients with your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add egg yolk and 1 tbsp cold water, and gently knead until mixture comes together. Form into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled (about 1 hour).
2 For roasted rhubarb, preheat oven to 150°C. Place rhubarb in a roasting pan, scatter with sugar and orange rind and drizzle with orange juice. Roast until tender (12-15 minutes).
3 On a lightly floured work surface roll out pastry to 5mm thick and line a 28cm-diameter fluted tart tin, pressing pastry into the corners, then trim edges. Refrigerate tart case for 30 minutes to rest.
4 Bring cream to the boil in a saucepan, then remove from heat, add chamomile flowers and leave to infuse for 10-15 minutes. Whisk butter, sugar, flour and ½ tsp salt in a large bowl to combine. Mix in eggs one at a time, then egg yolk. Strain cream through a fine sieve, add buttermilk and vinegar, then stir into egg mixture.
5 Increase oven to 180°C. Blind-bake tart shell (see cook’s notes p182) until pastry sets and edges are golden brown (12-15 minutes). Remove paper and weights, return tart shell to oven and bake until base is golden brown (8-10 minutes). Carefully pour in custard, reduce heat to 160°C and bake until set with a slight wobble in the centre (8-10 minutes). Cool. To serve, arrange rhubarb on tart and drizzle with rhubarb poaching syrup.