“An end-of-summer outing, in the company of old friends. The holidays are almost over, with just a few days to go before everything starts up again, so it’s good to make the most of this final stroll, which already smells of September. […]
You always go right down to the bottom of the lane, back to the same spot at the forest’s edge. Each year, the brambles get thicker and more impenetrable. The leaves are a deep matte green, the stems and thorns wine-colored like the marbled paper covers of old schoolbooks. […]
Blackberries should be small and shiny black. But you enjoy tasting the slightly acidic reddish ones along the way. In no time your hands are stained with black and wiping them on the bleached summer grass doesn’t help. At the forest’s edge, russet ferns shower down droplets of purple mist from crook-shaped heads. You talk about this and that. The children grow serious as they tell you how scared or excited they are at the prospect of having a particular teacher. Summer is al- ways brought to a close by children, and that path through the blackberry bushes will always taste of school. It’s gentle underfoot, and chatter comes easily. The light between two downpours is warm and intensified. When you go blackberry picking, you harvest the summer as well. Turning the bend towards the hazel trees, you slip-slide into autumn.”
For 8 tartlets
- 200g (11/2 cup) of wheat flour
- 100g (1/2 cup) of sugar
- 100g (1/2 cup) of salted butter
- 3 tbsp of cold water
Vanilla cream custard
- 2 egg yolks
- 500ml (1 cup) of milk
- 2 vanilla pods
- 25g (3 tbsp) of wheat flour
- 25g (3 tbsp) of cornstarch
- 80g (6 tbsp) of sugar
- 2 tbsp of raspberry jelly
In a bowl mix the flour, the sugar then add the softened butter. Knead well and add the cold water all at once. Form a ball (the dough should not stick, if it does you can add some flour).
Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F). Separate the dough into 8 pieces, roll them on a piece of floured parchment paper. Place the paste into buttered and floured molds, then bake in the oven for about 15 to 20 minutes until the pastry is golden brown. Leave to cool.
In a bowl beat the egg yolks with the sugar until pale. Add the flour and the cornstarch. Water it down a bit with half a glass of milk.
Split the vanilla pod and scrape the beans, then put it in the remaining milk. Warm over low heat. Once the milk is a little warm add the egg-flour-sugar-cornstarch mix and bring to a boil while stirring constantly with a whisk. The cream should be unctuous. Stop the heat and remove the vanilla pod. Wrap it in plastic, the cling film should stick to the cream. Let it cool down before refrigerating.
Generously spoon the custard into the baked pie shells. Sprinkle with blackberries and blueberries.
Warm two spoons of raspberry jelly over low heat. Baste the fruits with jelly.