Unlike a traditional milk tart made with egg, in this version the custard is not baked after being poured into the pre-baked crust.
Who says our vegan friends need to miss out on the custardy celebrations of Milk Tart Day on Sunday, 27 February? Not with Cape Town’s expert vegan patisserie Johke Steenkamp around, who shares her recipe for the creamy classic.
Some show-stopping desserts can only be pulled off by expert bakers, but Steenkamp’s’ milk tart looks impressive without being an impossible diva.
Steenkamp is a fine arts graduate turned chef and the proud owner of Grumpy and Runt.
No milk, no egg, no fuss. A cinnamon pastry cream is poured into a crunchy and buttery crust, and equally yummy biscuits are layered in a simple pattern on top for some extra flair.
Try Steenkamps’ easy vegan milk tart.
Vegan Milk tart
- 1 3⁄4 cups cake flour
- 1⁄4 cup almond flour
- 1 tbsp ground flax seed
- 1⁄4 tsp salt
- 1⁄2 cup plus 2 tbsp vegan butter (from a hard block if you can find one)
- 1⁄4 cup cold water
- 3 cups coconut cream
- 1 cup oat milk
- 1⁄2 cup plus 2 tbsp caster sugar
- 1⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 1⁄2 cup corn starch
- extra ground cinnamon for dusting
1. For crust: Sift the cake flour and salt together.
2. Add the almond flour and ground flax seed and mix well with a whisk.
3. Cut the butter into little blocks and add to the flour mix.
4. Use your hands to rub the butter into the flour. Try not to overwork the dough. The butter should remain firm. It helps to rinse your hands with cold water before and to lightly toss the mix together to avoid adding too much heat.
5. Pour the cold water over the crumby mix.
6. Use your hands to toss together again and to gently start kneading the dough into a ball.
7. Using your hands, spread the dough evenly in a tart pan. The preferred thickness is 3-4mm. I used a 22mm diameter pan which is quite small and used the leftover dough to make cookies for garnish. I allowed for excess to comfortably cover a larger pan.
8. Use a fork to poke holes in the bottom of the crust. This will allow for air to escape and avoid the crust from ballooning in the centre.
9. Bake on 180 or until the edges turn golden brown.
10. Remove from oven and set aside to cool while cooking the filling.
11. If you choose to make cookies for garnish with the remaining dough, the baking time will be shorter, between 5 and 10 minutes, depending on your cookie size. Remove from the oven when the edges have turned golden brown. The cookies are not sweet and pair well with the milk tart, but I would not recommend serving them by themselves.
12. For the filling: Add all the filling ingredients to a blender and blend well until everything is mixed thoroughly, then add to a pot. Make sure your pot is big enough to allow for whisking without spillage. If you do not have a blender that is no problem- simply add all the filling ingredients and whisk very well.
13. Transfer the pot to the stove and cook on high heat, whisking the whole time.
14. As the mix starts boiling it will thicken up.
15. Once the mix is nice and thick, remove from the heat and pour into your tart crust.
16. Do not let the mix run over the edge. It’s best to leave a little bit of the crust exposed along the edges to keep the filling neatly inside.
17. Give the tart pan a light jiggle on the counter to level the surface of the tart.
18. While the filling is still hot, dust with cinnamon sugar and decorate with cookies if you made some.
19. Leave the tart outside to cool. Once cooled, transfer to the fridge. Best served a few hours after making when the tart is fully cooled and set.