These cheerful baked custard cups are inspired by traditional Portuguese pasteis de nata, but instead of flaky pastry as a base, I used slices of buttered white bread. I also added a generous amount of seasonal Honeygold citrus zest in both the custard and the sweet syrup that’s drizzled over at the end.
- 12 slices white bread, crusts removed
- 3 T cake flour
- 1 1⁄3 cups full-cream milk
- 1 ½ cups water
- 275 g caster sugar
- 1 t ground cinnamon
- 4 Woolworths Honeygolds, zested and juiced
- 1 t vanilla paste
- 6 free-range egg yolks
- 100 g butter, melted
- For the syrup:
- 100 g white sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 t vanilla paste
1. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Using a rolling pin, roll out the slices of bread to a thickness of 1 mm. Lightly grease a muffin pan and line the moulds with the bread. Bake for 8–10 minutes, or until light golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack.
2. To make the custard, use an electric mixer to beat the flour and 4 T milk together until smooth. In a saucepan, bring the water, sugar, cinnamon and half the Honeygold zest to the boil. Using a sugar thermometer, bring the temperature to no higher than 104°C. Do not stir.
3. Gently heat the remaining milk in a separate saucepan, then whisk into the flour-and-milk mixture. Pour the syrupy mixture into the milk mixture, whisking continuously, until combined. Add the vanilla and beat at full speed for 1 minute. Whisk in the egg yolks until well combined, then whisk in the butter. Strain into a bowl through a sieve and cover the surface with clingwrap.
4. Increase the oven’s temperature to 250°C. To assemble the tarts, fill the baked bread shells with the custard, leaving a bit of room at the top. Bake for 15–20 minutes. Allow to cool, then turn out onto a cooling rack.
5. To make the Honeygold syrup, bring the sugar, water, vanilla paste, Honeygold juice and remaining zest to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes, or until syrupy. Allow to cool slightly, then drizzle over the custard cups. Serve warm.
Photographs: Toby Murphy
Production: Khanya Mzongwana
Food Assistant: Emma Nkunzana