Treacle tart

A slice of treacle tart at my Potter Picnic Party

A slice of treacle tart at my Potter Picnic Party

I made my first treacle tart for my Potter Picnic Party. I made it because it’s Harry’s favourite. I couldn’t, therefore not have it at my party. But I have to tell you, I was quite sceptical about the whole concept. You see, in Australia, we know treacle only has the dark, quite bitter syrup. But it turns out that treacle has traditionally come in two types: dark treacle and light treacle. Light treacle is what we know as golden syrup. This glorious nectar, is what most treacle tarts are made with.

This recipe as based loosely on Mary Berry’s recipe. But I’ve upped the filling quantities and played around with them a bit. I was concerned about the overwhelming sweetness of a tart made primarily with golden syrup, so I added a little dark treacle for bitterness, and used far more citrus than Mary does. Because you don’t blind bake the pastry, it’s important to bake the tart on a pre-heated baking tray. I put my enamel cast iron tray in the oven while it was heating up, and placed the flan tin on top of that. It worked a treat, and the pastry cooked perfectly.

Anyway, I now absolutely understand why treacle tart is Harry Potter’s favourite dessert. My birthday guests were not stinting in their praise. One said, ‘while everything has been delicious… this tart is life changing.’ That certainly did the trick for me and I’ll be glad to bake this again at the next opportunity.

Makes 1, 26 cm tart

Pastry

250 grams plain flour
130 grams butter
3 tablespoons ice cold water

Filling

700 grams golden syrup
100 grams dark treacle
3 lemons, zest of (finely grated)
¾ cup lemon juice
300 grams fresh, sourdough breadcrumbs

To make the pastry, measure the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter with your fingertips. You want it to look like fine breadcrumbs. Add the ice cold water and mix to a firm dough. Cover the dough in cling film and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200oC and place a heavy baking tray in the oven to heat up. Grease a deep 26 centimetre loose bottomed fluted flan tin with butter.

Roll the pastry out thinly on a lightly floured work surface. Line the prepared tin with the pastry. Prick the base with a fork to stop it rising during baking and return it to the fridge to cool again.

To make the filling, heat the syrups gently, but do not let them boil. Once they’ve melted, add the breadcrumbs, lemon juice and lemon zest. If the mixture looks runny, add a few more breadcrumbs. Pour the syrup into the pastry lined tin and level the surface.

Bake the tart on the pre-heated baking tray for ten minutes until the pastry has started to colour, then turn the oven down to 180oC and bake for a further 25-30 minutes until the filling is set. Remove the tart from the oven. Leave it in the tin to set.

Serve the tart warm, at room temperature or cold. I like to serve it with whipped cream, but the super decedent can serve it with clotted cream.

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About Susan

Susan is the ACT Convenor of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. She is currently undertaking a PhD in International Relations. Susan continues to work on the Annual Civil Society Dialogue on Women, Peace and Security.
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