I’m going International!
Last week, I shared a list of South African dishes that I’ve been interested in trying, and ever since I’ve been desperate to try my hand at cooking again. I can’t do a lot of cooking at my China apartment because I lack both a kitchen and money for imported ingredients. You’d be surprised at how expensive things like Vanilla, Chocolate, Sauces, and even Cheese can get!
Anyway, July is a busy month for my family with a family reunion, fish fry, 4 Birthdays, and anniversary, and a Home Extension luncheon with my aunt. Since I’m staying at my aunt’s house and have access to her extra awesome kitchen, I decided to whip some international dishes up.
The Fish Fry was our first event, and I tried my hand at a South African Melktert! Originally based on a Dutch dish, the Melktert is now a clearly South African custard dessert that requires no cooking but tastes delicious! It has a strong cinnamon/almondy flavor and is kind of a cross between a cake and an egg custard. Really unique, my uncle said he’s never had anything quite like it.
The recipe below makes two pies, and easily slices into 16 pieces. Must be cooled, but can be served warm or cold.
**Although it’s been recommended as a possibility, I don’t suggest replacing cake flour with normal flour–its need that extra cakey touch.
Pastry Shell: Mixing Bowl, Fork, Knife, Pastry Cutter, Ceramic Pie Balls, Two 9-inch Glass Pie Plates
- 4 Cups – Flour
- 2 tsp – Salt
- 1 1/3 Cup – Lard (Refrigerated)
- 4 TBSP – Butter (Refrigerated)
- 10-12 TBSP – Ice Water
Filling: Large Sauce Pan, General Mixing Bowl, Large Glass Mixing Bowl, Mixer, Spatula, Spoon.
- 4 1/4 Cup – 2% Milk
- 1 1/4 Cup – Cake Flour
- 1 Cup + 1 TBSP – Sugar
- 2 tsp – Vanilla
- 1 tsp – Almond Extract
- Pinch – Salt
- 4 Eggs
- 1 TBSP – Butter
- 3 tsp + 2 tsp + 1 tsp – Cinnamon
- Oil or Spray two 9-inch Pie Plates.
- Slice the Lard and Butter into small pieces and add them to the mixing bowl
- Thrown in Flour and Salt on top.
- With fork, lightly mix Flour and Salt together (couple of stirs.)
- With a Pastry Cutter, slowly cut the mixture together until you don’t see any more chunks of butter or lard.
- Start adding water one tablespoon at a time. After each tablespoon, use a fork to mix the water in until the dough sticks together if you try to form a ball. You don’t want a wet dough, it should be pretty dry. Just enough water for you to smash it all together even if it is still crumbly.
- Form two balls of dough and wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 45 minutes.
- Turn on the stove to 450 degrees.
- Take out one dough ball. Roll it out to about 3/4 inch thickness and put in Pie Plate. Add in a handful of “Pie Ceramic Balls” to keep weigh the dough down.
- Cook the shell for 8 minutes. Dump out the Ceramic Balls, and cook another 2-4 minutes until the shell edges turn golden.
- Do the same thing for the other dough ball.
- Now cool the two pastry shells while you cook the filling.
- Separate the eggs, putting the yolk in the first mixing bowl and the whites in the glass bowl.
- Add 1 1/4 Cups Milk, Flour, Sugar, Vanilla, Almond Extract, 3 tsp Cinnamon and Salt to the egg yolks. Using the mixer, mix them together making sure to get rid of the cake flour lumps.
- Clean your beaters. Using the mixer on High, whisk the egg whites until they reach a stiff peak (when you pull the beaters up, it forms a peak and stays).
- In the Sauce Pan, add 3 Cups of Milk and 2 tsp Cinnamon. Bring to a boil.
- Add in the Flour Mixture. Lightly stir until it reaches cake batter consistency.
- Add in the Egg Whites. Fold in, don’t over stir!
- Slice in the butter and stir a couple more times.
- Divide the batter between each pie plate.
- Sprinkle with mixture of 1 tsp cinnamon and sugar.
- Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Slice, add whipped cream, and serve!
Bask in the Praise!