This is a variation of Sugar pie, a baked custard-style tart that’s associated with the French-speaking Canadian province of Quebec. Versions are also popular in the American Midwest, and are variously called Sugar cream pie, Hoosier sugar cream pie and Indiana farm pie. If you wanted to make this dessert simpler to make, you could easily substitute ready-made shortcrust pastry instead of making your own. Just make sure you choose one made with butter.
- 250 ml (1 cup) maple syrup
- 230 g (1 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
- 2 ½ tbsp plain flour
- 3 eggs, beaten well
- 250 ml (1 cup) evaporated milk or pouring cream
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- icing sugar, for dusting
- whipped cream, to serve
- 200 g (1 ⅓ cups) plain flour
- 125 g unsalted butter, chopped
- 60 ml (¼ cup) iced water, approximately
- 1 egg yolk, beaten well
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Chilling time 30 minutes
For the pastry, place the flour in a bowl, add the butter then, using your fingertips, rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Using your hands, mix in 2 tbsp of the iced water, adding a little extra, as necessary, to form a coarse dough. Knead the dough briefly until it comes together, then form it into a disc. Wrap the pastry in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 200˚C.
On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out between two sheets of baking paper into a round about 3mm thick. Transfer to a 4 cm deep 24 cm pie tin with a removable base and ease the pastry into the tin. Trim the edges. Use scraps to seal any tears or holes in the pastry or the filling will seep through. Line the pastry shell with baking paper then fill with baking beads or dried beans. Bake for 25 minutes or until cooked through. Remove the beads and paper and brush pastry all over with the egg yolk. Reduce the oven to 180˚C. Bake for about another 8 minutes or until pastry is light golden. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.
Combine the syrup, sugar, flour and eggs in a food processor and process until smooth. Add the evaporated milk and vanilla and pulse until combined well. Pour into the pastry shell then bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven to 170˚C and bake for about 30 minutes, until the filling is set and the pastry is golden. Stand until cool and firm then dust in icing sugar.
Serve in wedges with whipped cream.
Photography, styling and food preparation by china squirrel.
When she doesn’t have her head in the pantry cupboard, Leanne Kitchen finds time to photograph food and write cookbooks. You can view her work on her website.