I really think this is one of the prettiest and simplest desserts that you can have this time of year. Nothing but some old stale breadcrumbs, humble hardy grown rhubarb and some sweet tangy ginger. Cold golf balls of frozen candy floss to top a pointy slice of warm ginger spiced treacle tart after the slow roasted spring lamb shoulder we devoured for Easter lunch.
I’ve always grown my own rhubarb letting it ripen naturally around the summer time into gangly red and green fingers of sweet and sour goodness. But Portobello market is bursting with the ‘forced’ type at the moment and I couldn’t resist bagging some of the leggy, blushing pastel pink stems for this killer sorbet.
- 800g forced, pink rhubarb, chopped
- 175g caster sugar
- 100ml water
- 1 lime
- Mix the chopped rhubarb with the caster sugar and and place in a saucepan. Heat gently with the water until beginning to soften and simmer for about 5 minutes.
- When tender, remove from the heat, squeeze in the lime juice and leave to cool slightly.
- Puree until smooth, taste and adjust with sugar or lime (it should be a little sweeter than you like as the freezing with dampen this) and then churn in an ice cream maker for about 30 minutes. Alternatively, pour into a container and freeze, mixing every 30mins-1hr to break up the ice crystals until set.
Ginger Treacle Tart
- 125g chilled butter
- 250g flour
- Zest ½ orange
- Cold water
- 200g white breadcrumbs (the staler the better)
- 400g golden syrup
- 2 eggs, beaten
- Pinch ground ginger
- 2-3 balls of preserved stem ginger, chopped finely
- ½ lemon, zest and juice
- Start with the pastry. Mix the butter into the flour in a processor or with your hands until you form a breadcrumb like texture. Mix in the orange zest. Add a spoonful of cold water, a small bit at a time and mix into the flour and butter until you can form a smooth dough. Shape into a disc, wrap in cling film and leave to chill for about 30 minutes or so in the fridge.
- Grease and line a 20-22cm tart tin and preheat the oven to 180°C. Remove the pastry from the fridge and leave to adjust to room temperature before rolling out on a floured surface to about the thickness of a pound coin. Line the greased tin pressing the pastry into the case. Chill the casing for about 10 minutes if you can.
- Prick the base with a fork to stop it rising up when cooking and place a sheet of parchment on top followed by some heavy baking beans or dry raw rice. Push it right up to the edges to keep the parchment down.
- Bake blind for 20-25 minutes until the casing if lightly golden and cooked. Remove the beans and baking sheet for the final 5 minutes to brown and cook the base.
- Remove from the oven and reduce the heat to 160°C.
- Now, warm the golden syrup in a saucepan until molten. Remove from the heat and add the ginger, lemon, breadcrumbs and stir to combine. Mix in the eggs making sure the mixture if not too hot first or these will scramble.
- Pour into the pre-baked tart tin and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until golden and set.
- Serve warm with the rhubarb sorbet and some slow roasted vanilla speckled rhubarb on the side or a good quality vanilla ice cream.