“If you did not eat so many creamcakes you would not have such dreams. Rich foods are not for girls your age, when your humors are so unbalanced. Maester Toman says — ”
“I hate Maester Toman,” Teora said. Then she bolted from the table, leaving her lady mother to make apologies for her. –The Winds of Winter, excerpt chapter
Yep, this is your first recipe from Winds of Winter.
But don’t get too excited- it’s from a sample chapter that GRRM put up online several months ago. Sadly, I don’t get a better a preview of the food in the next book than any other fans. This recipe, though, was too good to put off.
Because they are bite-sized and not overly sweet, these tarts are dangerously addictive. They are made up of a sweet crust and what is essentially a custard filling. I’m not usually a fan of adding rosewater to food, but in this, the addition is so subtle that it helps round out the flavors, rather than clashing with them. An assortment of toppings finish off an awesome dessert, and make for a flashy presentation.
If anyone has a great suggestion for a modern version, I’d love to hear it!
Medieval Cream Tarts Recipe
Makes about 4 dozen mini tarts
For three tarts, which should each be about a foot wide, take one quart of the best cream that you can find, and put it in a pan over the fire. And put two eggs, which are well beaten, into it, and when it begins to boil, then take six more eggs and let them be well beaten and put them into it, and some good flour and pour it slowly into the pan. And one should stir it constantly, so that it does not burn. After that, when the eggs have been poured in, throw a quarter of a pound of fresh butter into it and let it simmer together, until it becomes thick. Afterwards let it cool, and when it is cold, then put it into three pastry shells, each of which is a foot wide. And let it bake in the tart pan. If you would put it straight away on the table, then sprinkle a quarter pound of sugar over all three, together with a little rose water. And one should serve it forth while it is yet warm. -Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin, 16th century
Cook’s Notes: I’ve halved the original recipe, and instead of making large tarts, opted for much smaller versions, which would better tempt a child with a sweet tooth.
Ingredients for pastry:
- 3 cups flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup warm water
- pinch of saffron, or a single drop of yellow food coloring
Ingredients for Filling:
- 2 cups cream
- 1 eggs, plus 3 more eggs
- pinch of cardamom
- pinch of cinnamon
- 1/2 stick butter
- 1 tsp. rose water
- 2 Tbs. sugar for dusting
- garnish with your choice of crushed pistachios, candied citrus, etc.
Make up the pastry shells: Combine the flour and sugar. Let the saffron soak in the warm water for about 5 minutes, until the water has taken on a slight yellow tint. Add this to the dry mixture a small amount at a time, until it has become a large lump of dough. Roll out the dough to a little under 1/4″ thickness, and cut into 2″ rounds. Press these into a mini muffin pan, and bake for around 5 minutes at 350F. Remove from pan and allow to cool.
For the Filling: Combine the cream and one beaten egg in a medium saucepan. Bring slowly to a simmer. In a separate bowl, beat the remaining eggs. While whisking furiously, gradually pour in about 1 cup of the cream- this tempers the eggs so you don’t scramble them. Pour this whole mixture back into the pot. Add the spices, butter, and rose water, and stir, as it thickens. When it has thickened appreciably, remove from heat and let cool.
Spoon the filling into the prepared shells, dust with sugar, and top with your choice of garnish.