*This recipe is gluten-free according to industry standards
whole milk 1 litre
double cream 150ml
golden caster sugar 50g
bay leaf 1
vanilla pod ½, cut open lengthways
lemon ½, zested
pudding rice 100g
softened butter 20g, for the tins
eggs 2, beaten
granulated brown sugar 2 tbsp
unsalted butter 50g, melted
buckwheat flour 300g, plus more for rolling out
golden caster sugar 1 tbsp
lemon juice 1 tsp
lemon thyme 1 sprig, leaves only
Step 1Put the milk, cream and sugar into a medium pan, add the bay leaf and split vanilla pod. Bring almost to the boil and switch off the heat and leave to infuse for as long as you can (but at least 15 minutes).
Step 2For the pastry, mix the eggs, 40ml water, ½ tsp salt, sugar and melted butter, then gradually add the buckwheat flour. Knead it over a well-floured surface until it stops being sticky, incorporating more flour until this happens. Wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Step 3Strain the milk into a clean pan, add the lemon zest, a pinch of salt, and the rice. Stir thoroughly and cook over a very low heat, stirring regularly for about an hour, until the rice is cooked and you have a thick glossy sauce.
Step 4When the pastry is chilled, roll it out as thin as possible so it will line 8 x 10-12cm individual cases. Butter the tart cases and gently mould the pastry with your hands. Add a scrunched-up piece of foil or baking paper to the cases, and fill with baking beans. Bake blind for 5 minutes, then remove the baking beans and put back into the oven to dry for 2 minutes. Spoon about 3 tbsp of the rice pudding into the cases and pop back into the oven for a further 10 minutes.
Step 5Cook the blackberries with the sugar and a dash of water for 5 minutes in a saucepan. Add a small squeeze of lemon if the blackberries are sweet (leave this out if they are tart already) and spoon over the tarts as they come out of the oven. Sprinkle with lemon thyme to serve.Cook’s notesIf you can’t find buckwheat flour – and can tolerate gluten – make shortcrust pastry instead.