I love Emily’s enjoyment of creating meals from scratch: it’s a great approach to food and I share her feelings on how rewarding it is to do this.
I also love the idea of Emily’s annual trips to Disneyland: I do agree with her in that it is terrific for adults, too!
My SRC choice
Once again it was a highly enjoyable challenge to select a recipe from so many excellent ones for this month’s assignment.
Very high on my shortlist were:
- almond-poppy seed pound cake with lemon neufchâtel
- acorn squash, black bean and spinach quesadilla
- peanut butter & chocolate bars
As our squashes are getting close to being harvested, the quesadillas will be the first recipe using them!
But each time I dipped into Emily’s blog her Salted honey pie kept catching my eye: a definite sign that this was the one for this month!
Salted honey pie/tart
Any sweet dish that contains salt is likely to be a winner in my book and this salted honey pie is seriously stunning. It ticks all the right flavour boxes for me and for those who ate it with me. I would go so far as to say that it is one of the nicest sweet bakes I have eaten in ages: perfect just as it comes or with a little unembellished Greek yoghurt, crème fraîche or soured cream.
It is an easy bake to make: the pastry handles very well (as with most pastry, chilling is the key), you don’t need to cook the pastry first and the filling is made up in moments.
The only difference I made to the recipe, apart from converting it to UK measurements, was to make it into a tart rather than a pie, as my pie dishes were being used for something else!
But whether made as a pie or as a tart, this is a phenomenal treat to eat.
Click on the blue frog at the bottom of the page to see the recipes others in SRC have chosen this month.
Salt in sweet dishes: oh yes!
There are folk who turn their nose up at the notion of salted sweet dishes, but in my experience they have either yet to experience this exciting combination or they have has the misfortune to have eaten sweet dishes that have had too much salt in it.
Salt really enhances a sweet dish if used well: a little sprinkling into melted chocolate brings out the flavour of the chocolate significantly, and a little over the top of meringues before they go into the oven gives a wonderful flavour to the baked meringue. And of course there is the total joy of a proper salted caramel: much nicer than unsalted caramel, in my opinion, with more depth of flavour.
You do need the right sort of salt, though: it should be sea salt in flakes, crystals or very fine, rather than “table salt”, and it should be used in moderation so that you get the hint of salt without needing to reach for a glass of water.
Great as a large bake or as smaller individual treats
A large tart, brought to the table for slicing ceremoniously, adds to the joy of a meal, but this is also great made into small individual portions: perfect for transporting for a picnic or popping into a lunch box.
For individual ones, cut out circles of pastry and place into buttered mince pie tins – deep or shallow. Spoon a little of the filling into each one and bake for about 20 minutes until well risen with a slight wobble.
A shortcut version
If making pastry is not your thing, use a bought, ready cooked sweet pastry case and simply pour the filling into it. Bake for the same time as given below, but cover the tart loosely with foil after about 30 minutes to stop the pastry browning too much.
Recipe: salted honey tart – makes one large tart
For the pastry:
- 180g plain flour
- 90g cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 2 teaspoons caster sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- cold water to mix
For the filling:
- 115g unsalted butter, melted
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon fine semolina
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 260g honey – go for the best quality you can
- 3 large eggs
- 115g double cream
- 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
- 1 to 2 teaspoons flaked sea salt
You will also need a well buttered pie dish or a loose-bottomed flan tin/cake tin about 1″ deep
Make the pastry:
(1) Mix the flour and sugar in a medium-sized bowl and gently rub in the butter until you get the texture of small breadcrumbs – or pop it in the food processer and pulse gently for a few seconds. Add a few tablespoons of cold water, mixing gently to incorporate, adding more to get a soft dough. Pat it down a little, wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least an hour.
(2) Roll out the pastry on the work surface that has been lightly dusted with flour to about 12 inches in diameter. Transfer it to a buttered pie dish or loose-bottomed cake tin and trim the edge almost even with the edge of the pan. Crimp along the edge with your fingers or a fork. Cover it with clingfilm and chill until needed. NB: if you find the pastry is too firm to roll out after chilling, leave it at room temperature for about 20 minutes to slightly soften up.
Make the filling:
(3) While the pastry case is chilling, preheat the oven to 170C (fan). In a medium bowl whisk together all the filling ingredients until thoroughly combined.
(4) Pour the filling into the pastry case and bake for 45 to 55 minutes until the top is deep golden brown, has puffed around the edges and is just set in the centre: it should have a gentle wobble, which will set a little firmer as it cools.
(5) Remove from the oven and allow to rest for at least few hours before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature, and give a light sprinkling of sea salt just before serving.