Pasteis de Nata (Portugese Custard Tarts)

Nata are one of my favorite Portuguese pastries–something I always get when my husband and I go out for coffee and “slatki” (something sweet) and end up at one of the many Portuguese bakeries here in Brussels. Although they tend not to have the greatest coffee, they more than make up for it with their desserts. Figuring they have to be pretty simple to make myself, I decided to scour the internet for the best recipes and came up with one from BBC’s good food. I know, I know. Why on Earth would I ever consider a British site? Well, it turns out it was actually authentic when compared with other recipes. Shocking! lol. The only thing I might change in the future is making my own, rather than using ready-made puff pastry.

Adapted from BBC Good Food’s Recipe found here.

  • 1 large egg
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 115g of sugar
  • 2 tbsp of cornflour
  • 400ml of milk
  • 2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 sheet ready rolled puff pastry

Lightly grease a 12 hole muffin tin and pre-heat oven to 200C.

In a medium sized pot (away from stove), mix together the eggs, yolks, sugar, & cornflour, then gradually add the milk until mixture is well mixed and smooth. Place over medium heat and stir constantly until the mixture comes to the slow boil and thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

Transfer the custard to a glass or ceramic bowl to cool and cover with cling film to prevent skin forming.

Roll out the puff pastry. Cut into circles with either a circular cookie cutter or cup and place into a muffin or cupcake pan.

Once the custard has cooled, spoon onto the puff pastry and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden on top. Let cool for a few minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack.

Enjoy!

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