Melktert, a South African dessert

Melktert: A classic South African dessert consisting of a sweet pastry crust filled with a creamy custard made from milk, eggs, sugar, and a hint of cinnamon. It’s served chilled and often dusted with cinnamon on top.

Here’s a recipe for a classic milk tart, also known as “melktert,” including the ingredients, method, and serving suggestions:

Ingredients for Melktert :

For the crust:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
1 large egg
Pinch of salt

For the filling:
4 cups whole milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Ground cinnamon, for dusting

For serving (optional):
Whipped cream
Ground cinnamon


Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt for the crust. Add the chilled butter cubes and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to rub the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Add the egg to the mixture and mix until a dough forms. Knead the dough lightly on a floured surface until smooth. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Roll out the chilled dough on a floured surface to fit a 9-inch tart or pie pan. Press the dough into the pan, trimming any excess. Prick the base with a fork.
In a saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat until hot but not boiling. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cornstarch, eggs, and vanilla extract until smooth.
Slowly pour the hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. Once combined, return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring continuously, until thickened. This will take about 10-15 minutes.
Pour the filling into the prepared crust and smooth the top. Sprinkle the surface with ground cinnamon.
Bake the tart in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the crust is golden and the filling is set. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
Once cooled, refrigerate the milk tart for at least 2 hours or overnight to allow it to set.

Serving suggestion:

Serve chilled milk tart slices on their own or with a dollop of whipped cream on top.
Dust the top with an extra sprinkle of ground cinnamon before serving.

Enjoy your homemade milk tart!

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