Vegan creme patissiere – nailed it!
A fairly innocent-looking strawberry tart lining the shelves of many a French patisserie is annoyingly filled with an egg yolk-based creme patissiere and I had never given much thought to veganising this but when my dad requested a fruit tart for a dessert at his birthday party at the weekend, I was up for the challenge! The almondy-flavoured cream is based on a recipe by Isa Chandra Moskovitz. Annoyingly, I do not have any photos of the inside of this as it was DESTROYED at the party!!! But rest assured, it was pretty good!
- 1 x shortcrust pastry (I used pre-made Jus-Rol for ease)
- punnet of strawberries (frankly, the more the better)
- handful blueberries (optional but looks nice!)
- 2 sachets red jelly glaze mix (I used Greens)
- 2 cups cashews (NOT roasted/salted), soaked for 5+ hours
- 2.5 cups almond milk
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 tbsp coconut oil
- 1.5 tbsp agar flakes
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 0.5 tsp lemon juice
- pinch salt
- Before you start make sure the cashews have been soaked until they are soft and blendable. Grease a tart dish and line with shortcrust pastry. ‘Blind bake’ the pastry in the oven following the instructions on the pack. You may wish to use baking beans or something similar. Mine took about 25 mins to cook fully. Wait for the pastry to cool.
- Combine 1 cup of the almond milk with the agar flakes and simmer for about 5 minutes. Separately, combine the cornflour and the rest of the almond milk, whisking together and adding to the almond milk and agar mixture. Continue to cook for another 5 minutes until the mixture thickens.
- Add the sugar and coconut oil and whisk together before adding to the blender with the soaked cashews, vanilla extract, almond extract, lemon juice and salt and blend until very smooth.
- Pour the mixture into the cooled tart case, cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours until set.
- Prepare the red jelly and allow to cool a little.
- Meanwhile, slice the strawberries and arrange in concentric circles and filling any small gaps with the blueberries.
- When happy with the pattern, pour over the jelly and refrigerate the tart again until the jelly is set.
- Serve on day of making!