After a trip home to Nu Zullund I was feeling rather refreshed, so much so that I have gathered back some of my quirky creativity in the umbrella skirt eco bag as well as picking up some quality NZ spirits in Stolen Rum, from duty free on my way through.
The Stolen Rum was a bit of a must have and is a pretty great story, two good kiwi blokes looking for something to fill in their time (other than playing tennis of course) and thought why not make rum. If you don’t know about it definitely check it out. I have to say it is pretty yummy with ginger beer and the friend of mine who introduced me to it will attest to that!
Aside from that , I am at the other end of two shortened weeks. It feels rather good to have so much of a break but I am itching to be productive both at work and with creative projects. This has lead to two outcomes, one starting to read an enveloping and productive non-fiction book and the other being creative in the kitchen. Kitchen creativity was sparked by reading a Stephanie Alexander contribution to the Sunday life newspaper insert.
Hello Walnut and Rum Tart!
1 quantity shortcrust pastry, I made the pastry using a Jamie Oliver recipe from his American roadtrip cookbook.
½ cup smooth fig jam, warmed.
250g freshly shelled walnuts
250g caster sugar, I used a combunation of caster, raw and dark brown sugar and whizzed them together in the food processor.
4 free-range eggs, separated
100g softened Unsalted butter
2 tbsp whipping cream, I just used full cream milk
100ml rum, hmm I was a bit over zealous here…
100g best-quality dark chocolate
30g unsalted butter
Roll out pastry and line a 28cm loose-bottomed flan tin. Chill for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Line the pastry case with aluminium foil and fill with baking weights, dried beans or chick peas. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove weights and foil and brush base of tart with jam. Reset oven to 180ºC.
For filling, process walnuts until quite fine. Beat together sugar and egg yolks until thick and pale. Add ground walnuts, softened butter, cream and rum. In a clean, dry bowl whisk egg whites until soft peaks form, then gently fold into nut mixture. Pour filling into tart shell. Bake for 45 minutes until filling is golden and feels springy when touched lightly with the palm of your hand. Remove tart from oven and leave to cool before icing.
For icing, place a bowl over a saucepan of hot water over medium heat (the bottom of the bowl must not touch the water). Add chocolate and butter and allow to melt. Stir until smooth. Pour over cold tart, tilting so mixture flows evenly.