I doubt that I will survive the experience.
Since as far back as I can remember, I’ve never really been the tough guy. I have pre-school memories of a 5 year old me being mocked by the ‘mean girls’ cause they wouldn’t let me cook with them in the kindergarten’s play kitchen. “Go outside and play with the boys,” they’d taunt.
Considering this, I very seriously doubt that I would survive prison today. I shudder thinking of my first day behind bars and how it would bring back awkward pre and high school memories.
Would I fit into any of the cliques? Which cafeteria table would I sit at (would anybody even let me sit at their table)? Would I be as bad at making a shank as I was in high school wood shop? Ugh!
I think about how when everyone shares their tales of what landed them in prison (i.e. bank robbery, racketeering, money laundering), the awkward silence that will follow as I share my story of what landed me in The Rock…recipe plagiarism.
Normally, at the CeramicCanvas.com, when I come across a recipe that inspires me, I tweak it, cook it and share it. But this time is different. This time I am copying someone else’s recipe word for word…with absolutely no shame.
I’ve made and enjoyed this Blackberry Custard Tart for over a decade and I have never veered off the original recipe as it was printed in the October 2000 issue of Saveur Magazine.
I mean, why mess with a good thing.
It’s an explosion of berry flavors. The blackberries are incorporated in the tart in two ways. First, the berries are pureed and mixed into the egg custard – providing a sweet, creamy but distinctive summer-like berry flavor.
The second berry burst is more intense and comes from the blackberries that are left whole and allowed to ‘stew’ in the cooking tart. As they cook they release their juices and you’re left with berries that are full of tarty goodness.
Vibrant in color, this tart has a delicious one, two berry punch!
Considering the plagiaristic mess I’ve now gotten myself into, I can only hope that one day someone bakes and sends this tart to me in my jail cell (and please don’t forget to bake it with a file hidden inside)
NOTE: The pastry recipe that was printed with the tart used vegetable shortening (which produces a flaky crust) but a good all-butter crust works just as well. The butter pastry recipe below is from How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman.
BLACKBERRY CUSTARD TART
Originally published in Saveur Magazine
FOR THE PASTRY (Pastry Recipe Adapted from How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman):
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 TSP sugar
¾ TSP Kosher salt
10 TBL cold unsalted butter, cut into to ½ cubes
4 TBL ice water, plus more if necessary
FOR THE FILLING (Originally published in Saveur magazine):
1 1⁄4 cups superfine sugar
2 1⁄2 cups blackberries (or raspberries)
6 tbsp. heavy cream
For the pastry: Sift together flour, sugar, and salt into a large mixing bowl. Use a pastry cutter (or two knives) to work butter into flour until it resembles coarse meal. Drizzle in up to 4 tablespoons of ice water, stirring dough with a wooden spoon until it begins to hold together. Press dough into a rough ball, transfer to a lightly floured surface, then flatten slightly with your hand to make a round. Wrap dough in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 400°. Roll dough out on a lightly floured surface into a 14″ round, fit into a 12″ fluted false-bottom tart pan, and run rolling pin over rim to remove overhanging dough. Prick bottom with a fork. Line dough with parchment, add pie weights or dried beans, and bake until crust is set and edge begins to color, about 25 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°, remove parchment and weights, brush bottom and sides with egg, and continue baking until crust is golden, 15–20 minutes longer.
For the filling: Whisk together eggs and sugar in a medium mixing bowl until pale yellow. Purée 1 1/2 cups of the blackberries in a blender, and stir into egg mixture. Remove the zest from half the lemon, then squeeze juice from lemon and add both to egg mixture. Add cream; mix well. Arrange remaining 1 cup blackberries evenly on crust, pour in filling, and bake until filling is set, about 40 minutes. Set aside to cool before serving.