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Yorkshire Curd Tart – with homemade curds!

Yorkshire Curd Tart – with homemade curds!

Steven Brown

Curd Tart Ingredients List:

Shortcrust pastry.

Fresh curds- (see method)

3 eggs

3 tablespoons of sugar

1 oz of melted butter

Currants and mixed chopped peel or mixed dried fruit

Mixed spice/ nutmeg



After the successful “tasting” of my Yorkshire Curd tart over our Open Weekend, I thought I would share with you “my” recipe behind this traditional fare.

Yorkshire Curd tarts were originally made around Whitsuntide using left over curds from the cheese making process. When I first started making the tart I could buy curds in the supermarket. Then because of a neighbouring dairy farmers wife, I discovered the absolute crème de la crème of curds made from the first milk of a newly calved cow, rich in colostrum and fats, which produces a wonderful yellow creamy curd.

Alas, as more Dairy farmers went out of milking my source for this milk dried up and I have had to resort to other methods. Successful but quite without that special taste. 

So for the uninitiated all you need now is some Gold Top Jersey milk, preferably not “Homogonised” or stirred up so the cream still sits on top of the bottle and some common or garden Epsom Salt.

Give the Milk a good shake before pouring into your pan (or the cream sticks to the neck of the bottle) and gently heat till just off boiling. Stir through a heaped teaspoon of Epsom Salts per Litre of milk and watch the curds and whey separate like magic.

Strain the curds (I use a slotted to spoon to lift the most of the curds out of the whey) through a nylon sieve. Flush through with cold water and leave to drain and cool.

This will happily freeze for future use.

To make the Curd Tart:

Line a pie /flan dish with shortcrust pastry and bake blind till just starting to colour at the edges.

Melt about an ounce of proper butter. (I stick it in a cup in the oven while I mix the rest of the ingredients)

Mix the curds with egg, sugar, (I use one tablespoon of sugar per egg) mixed spice, dried fruit (this was traditionally just currants but I quite like it with mixed fruit and chopped mixed peel). Stir the melted butter through the mixture just before putting into the pastry case.

Fill the pastry case with the curd mixture and return to the oven and cook till golden.

It won’t “rise” in the tin so if you want it deep you have to put plenty in.

I think it is best warm, with clotted cream, but that mixes the counties so do as you feel fit!

Yorkshire Curd Tart

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