Wednesday, 15 February 2017

French Rhubarb Flan isn’t just rhubarb, rhubarb!


French Rhubarb Flan 
The annual Rhubarb Festival of Food and Drink in Wakefield is almost upon us and forced rhubarb is appearing in the markets and grocery stores across the country. I love the tender sweetness of the young rhubarb which is grown in dark sheds in the Rhubarb Triangle in West Yorkshire. It makes delicious  rhubarb crumbles and tartes to savour. Looking through an old recipe book which Sheila from Chesterfield sent me, I came across French Rhubarb Flan. I’ve brought the recipe up to date and added a few more suggestions. It looks impressive but is easy to bake.
 French Rhubarb Flan
250g/9oz Rhubarb
1 tbsp Demerara sugar
175g/6oz shortcrust pastry
50g/2oz butter
50g/2oz (golden) caster sugar
2 eggs – yolks and whites separated
1 tbsp milk
50g/2oz plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
25g/1oz ground almonds
½ tsp ground ginger
50g/2oz (white) caster sugar

Pre heat the oven to 325F, Mark 3, 160C, 140C Fan.
Prepare the Rhubarb
Wash and cut the rhubarb into 2cms/1 inch chunks. Place on a baking tray and sprinkle the sugar over them. Then cook the pieces in the oven for about 15 minutes until tender but so they still hold their shape. Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly. Line a 21 cm/8 inch flan dish with the pastry, wrap in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Prepare the Filling
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat the yolks of eggs and mix with the milk. Then mix the flour, ground almonds, ginger and baking powder together. Add the flour and egg mixtures alternately to the creamed butter and sugar, mixing well. Place the cooked rhubarb pieces in the flan dish over the pastry and then spoon the mixture over the rhubarb. Bake for 30 minutes and remove from the oven to add the meringue topping.

Prepare the meringue topping
Whisk the whites of the eggs in a bowl until stiff. Add the sugar a little at a time and continue to whisk. Spoon the meringue on the top of the tart and make a pattern of swirls. Cook in a slow oven for about 20-25 minutes until the meringue is slightly brown.

Meryl says : Serve hot or cold with crème fraiche, yoghurt, ice cream or custard. It will keep well for a couple of days. What your favourite Rhubarb recipe? 

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