James Martin's roasted plum tart with crème pâtissière makes use of delicious seasonal plums and is perfectly light and delicate
- 500ml full-fat milk
- 1 vanilla pod, split, seeds scraped out
- 5 egg yolks
- 125g caster sugar
- 50g cornflour
- 25g butter
- icing sugar (optional)
- butter, for greasing
- flour, for dusting
- 500g good-quality, bought all-butter puff pastry
- 100g crème pâtissière
- 8 plums, halved, stoned and cut into wedges
- 50g melted butter
As the crème pâtissière cools down, dust it with icing sugar before you cover it and put it in the fridge. If you don’t, a skin will form and you’ll end up with lumps when you stir it.
For the crème pâtissière: Place the milk, vanilla pod and seeds in a saucepan and bring to the boil, then remove from the heat.
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a large bowl, then add the cornflour and whisk until smooth.
Pour the hot milk over the egg mixture, stirring all the time, then tip back into the saucepan. Cook over a high heat, still stirring all the time, for 2-3 minutes until the mixture has started to thicken.
Finally, whisk in the butter, remove from the heat and tip into a clean bowl. Cover with a dusting of icing sugar to stop a skin forming, or place a layer of clingfilm over the surface and chill until needed.
For the roasted plum tart: Preheat the oven to 220C, gas 7. Grease a large baking sheet and line with silicone paper.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a rectangle 15cm x 30cm and 5mm thick. Transfer to the lined baking sheet.
Score a border about 1cm in, all the way around the rectangle, taking care not to cut all the way through, then spread the inside with the crème pâtissière. Lay the plums, cut side up, in rows all over the crème pâtissière until it is covered.
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes until the pastry is cooked through and the plums are tender and caramelised, then brush with the melted butter.
Serve hot, warm or at room temperature, with vanilla ice cream or custard, if you like.
Sweet by James Martin (Quadrille £20)
Photography: Peter Cassidy
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