Melk Tert

This pie is traditionally served at barbecues and get-togethers in South Africa. It is similar to vanilla cream pie, but has a cookie-like crust and a double-cooked vanilla custard filling. To save egg whites, freeze in extra ice cube trays, then thaw as needed for recipes. Wash ice cube trays well before using again for ice.

Pastry

    cup cold butter
    cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    Pinch salt
    3 tablespoons cold water

Custard

    4 cups whole milk
    4 large egg yolks
    cup sugar
    ⅓ cup cornstarch
    3 tablespoons butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Pinch ground nutmeg
    Pinch salt

    Cinnamon sugar


1.  Preheat the oven to 350.

2.  Pastry: In a large bowl, cut the cold butter into thin slices
     with a serrated knife. Use a mixer to cream the butter and
     sugar, then beat in egg.

3.  Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into butter mixture;
     beat on low speed to form soft crumbs. Sprinkle with cold
     water and use a fork to form a soft dough.

4.  Divide dough in half then press evenly into two 9-inch tart
     pans with removable bases. Keep pressing as thin as possible, 
     crust will rise slightly.

5.  Custard: In a large bowl, whisk milk, yolks, sugar and   
     cornstarch. Strain through a large sieve into a 3-quart
     saucepan. Whisk constantly over medium heat until    
     thickened and large bubbles form on the surface.

6.  Remove from heat and whisk in butter, vanilla, nutmeg and
     salt. Pour half the custard into each prepared crust and
     sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

7.  Bake in preheated 350 oven for 20 minutes. Refrigerate 2  
     hours, then remove tarts from pans by using a long sharp
     knife to separate removable metal base from crust.

     Makes 8 servings