Crème brûleé milk tart

A take on the cinnamon-spiced milk tart with a French twist. Caramelising the top gives this creamy delight a crisp, sweet finish.
More than 1 hour
(plus cooling time)

Serves 8

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Shortcrust pastry:
  • 2½ cups (375g) sifted cake flour 
  • Pinch salt
  • 250g ice-cold butter cubes
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tsp (5ml) lemon juice 
  • 2 cups (750ml) milk
  • 1 quill cinnamon
  • 3cm strip orange peel (optional)
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 1¼ cups (250g) castor sugar + extra ¼ cup (60ml) for topping, flavour it with ground cinnamon, if you like
  • ⅓ cup (40g) cornflour
  • ¼ cup (60ml) flour
  • 3 Tbsp (45ml) butter
  • 2 tsp (10ml) vanilla essence


  1. Preheat oven to 190°C.
  2. For pastry, combine cake flour and a pinch of salt in a food processor. 
  3. Add butter and blitz into a breadcrumb texture.
  4. Add egg yolks and lemon juice while blending. 
  5. Mix just until a ball of dough forms. 
  6. Remove and shape into a flat disc, cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for 10-20 minutes until firm.
  7. Roll pastry out to fit a 23cm tart tin and blind bake for 15 minutes. 
  8. Reduce the oven to 180°C
  9. For filling, heat milk, cinnamon and orange peel together until steaming.
  10. Combine egg yolks and ¾ cup (150g) sugar in a bowl.
  11. Mix flours with a little water to make a slurry, then add to the bowl.
  12. Temper egg mixture by adding a thin stream of hot milk while whisking.
  13. Transfer mixture to the pot and boil while whisking for 3 minutes.
  14. Remove from heat, add butter and vanilla essence, and mix. 
  15. Leave custard to cool down at room temperature.
  16. Whisk 4 egg whites to stiff peaks, then add ½ cup (100g) sugar.
  17. Fold through cooled custard, and pour into blind-baked tart case.
  18. Bake for 20-23 minutes, until slightly set and not wobbly. Cool completely.
  19. Scatter with castor sugar and brûleé using a kitchen blow torch
  20. Serve immediately.


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