The whole blood orange craze is slowly petering out as the season for blood oranges is ending, but here’s one last blood orange recipe for the food blogging world. I actually made this one a couple weeks ago (this is the reason I originally made the blood orange curd for my macarons). I have the worst luck with curds. I’m always paranoid that I’m going to make them curdle and get chunky, so I undercook ALL THE TIME and then I get this weird, liquidy curd.
I knew this time it wouldn’t matter too much if it was too liquidy because I was baking it anyway, but I was still fairly determined to get it right. Some of the most important parts is making sure you make a slurry if you decide to add more cornstarch. A slurry is when you take about 1 tbsp of whatever it is you’re trying to thicken (gravy, soup, or curd in my case), and mix it separately with the cornstarch (or flour) to get a thick, white slurry. Then you incorporate the slurry back into your main mixture. If you add your cornstarch or flour directly into your batch, then it becomes really hard to mix all of the thickener in because there will be lots of chunks among a lot of liquid.
Another important thing about this tart is that using freshly-squeezed blood orange is going to make a world of a difference. I don’t know what happens between the fruit, the processing company, and the grocery store, but by the time most orange juices get to my fridge via a carton, it does not taste nearly as delicious as their freshly-squeezed counterparts.
If you use store-bought blood orange juice instead of freshly squeezed, the flavour will not be as fresh or intense.
Also, I added a teeny bit of food colouring gel to my blood orange curd, because the egg yolks mixed with the deep blood orange juice sort of yielded this flesh-coloured mixture. It’s just as delicious and if you can avoid using food colouring, you should. But I figured flesh-coloured filling in already fleshy-coloured crust would have not been as pretty to photograph.
The texture for this tart is really creamy. It’s a very smooth filling, but not quite the same smoothness as pumpkin pie. I really liked it, especially paired with the crispy, thick crust. My roommate said I should sell this tart. Heck, maybe one day I will. In the meantime, my baked goods will continue to be provided to friends, family, and classmates for free =P
Recipe adapted from White On Rice Couple
- To make the crust, use a pastry knife or blitz in a food processor all the crust ingredients until the butter bits are about pea-sized.
- Press the mixture into a lightly greased tart pan. Use a fork to pierce holes in the bottom to prevent any bubbles. If you have pie weights, use em, but if you don't, it's not the end of the world.
- Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes or until the middle and the edges start to brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool while you prepare the filling.
- In a bowl, whisk sugar, salt, zest, and cornstarch until incorporated.
- In a heat-safe metal bowl, whisk the eggs and yolk until they're kind of foamy.
- Add the blood orange juice and the sugar mixture to the egg mixture and mix together until incorporated.
- Place the mixing bowl over a gently simmering pot of water, and slowly stir until the mixture thickens and is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. This may take around 10-15 minutes.
- Once the curd is kind of a pudding-like consistency, remove from heat and strain with a fine mesh sieve, then mix in the cold, unsalted butter.
- Stir the butter in and let the custard set for about 5 minutes.
- Pour the custard into the baked crust and then bake for another 15 minutes until the custard is set.
- Let cool on a wire rack, and once completely cool, cover and refrigerate overnight prior to serving.