PURE ENGLISH RHUBARB IN A BUTTERY PASTRY IS THE BEST WAY TO APPRECIATE THE FLAVOUR AND TEXTURE OF THIS FRUIT-LIKE VEGETABLE. SERVE THIS WITH CUSTARD OR THICK CREAM.
Butter for greasing
500g rhubarb, trimmed
200g caster sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
Pinch of salt
A few drops milk
23cm round tart tin, about
2.5 cm deep
Preparation time 40 mins, including chilling time
Cooking time 45-55 mins
1. Butter a 23cm tart tin that’s about 2.5cm deep and set aside.
2. Roll out half of the shortcrust pastry into a circle that’s large enough to line the dish with a little overhang. Place the rolled-out circle of pastry inside the dish, pressing it down into the edges. Roll out the other half of the pastry into a rectangle and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Place both in the fridge for at least 30 minutes while you prepare the rhubarb.
3. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6. Trim the ends of the rhubarb, then cut the rhubarb into 3cm lengths and put them in a bowl with the sugar, cornflour and salt. Toss to coat the rhubarb.
4. Remove the pastry-lined dish from the fridge and fill it with the rhubarb mixture.
5. Remove the rectangle of pastry from the fridge and use a small knife to slice the pastry into 1cm-wide strips. Arrange the strips of pastry over the rhubarb in a lattice pattern, saving 3 strips for the edge. For the egg wash, whisk the egg and milk in a small bowl. Trim the edges of the pastry to the rim of the dish, then use a pastry brush to carefully coat the lattice with egg wash. Use the last 3 strips of pastry to cover the rim, then brush this with egg wash as well.
6. Place the dish in the oven over a piece of kitchen foil to catch any drips. Bake for 45-55 minutes. Leave to cool in the dish, before transferring to a serving plate. Serve with homemade custard. Store any leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days.