Saturday, March 05, 2022

Weekend Cooking: Milk Tart day

February 27 was Milk Tart Day. What,  you may ask is Milk Tart? Milk Tart, or Melktert as it is known in Afrikaans, is a South African specialty which features a sweet pastry crust and then a custard like filling. It is often accented with cinnamon.

The first time I had milk tart was when I visited South Africa to meet my in-laws and to see a tiny bit of the incredible country. There, you can just pick up a milk tart in the supermarket. There are some specialty South African shops here where you can pick up a premade tart but we haven't been there for a while.

Around a year ago I was watching Paul Hollywood's show City Bakes which featured Cape Town and he mentioned Milk Tart Day so that was the point when I decided I was going to try and make it and post about it on the right date. Originally my plan was to post about it last week but I ran out of time to do the actually making before we went on holidays so I am posting it this week instead. So this post has been a long time in development!

Like every well known dish, when I started looking for recipes for milk tart there are plenty of variations in the recipe. Some have a crust, others are crustless. Some require the filling to be cooked. Others, like the recipe that I am trying today, don't need the filling to be baked as such. I really should have asked my mother in law for her recipe! 

It took me a couple of goes to make the sweet pastry. Originally I tried making the pastry crust by hand as per the recipe I was using but I don't think the mixture was wet enough so I ended up going back to a tried and tested pastry recipe that I have made before

One of the things from trying the original pastry is that it just didn't look like it was going to make enough so I was then a bit worried that the filling wasn't going to be enough.  In the end, I think that I actually need a smaller tart into get the correct proportions (or maybe make another half portion of the filling and use the same tin) but what matters is the taste right? And apparently that was about right, although my husband would have liked a touch more sugar.  We had it for dessert with a family dinner and everyone, including the kids, had seconds which is a good sign. I call that a success.

This was the filling that I used from this recipe at

Milk Tart

3 egg yolks
20 ml castor sugar
10 ml cornflour
1 litre milk
5 ml vanilla essence
25 g butter
10 ml cake flour

Place the egg yolks, sugar, cake flour, cornflour in a medium mixing bowl and whisk until pale.

Heat the milk and butter in a small pot until almost boiling; remove from the heat.

Add the milk gradually to the egg mixture, beating constantly. Strain the mixture into the pan.

Stir constantly over low heat for 3 minutes with a wooden spoon or until it thickens.

Remove from the heat and add the vanilla essence.

Place the plastic wrap over the custard surface to prevent it from drying out.

Set aside to cool.

Spread the custard into the cooled pastry case and refrigerate to set.

Weekly meals

Saturday - Holiday dinner
Sunday - Takeaway
Monday - Roasted vegetables with chipolata
Tuesday - Chicken Stir Fry
Wednesday - Warm Steak Salad
Thursday - Pork Nachos
Friday - Dinner at the pub

Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book reviews (novel, nonfiction), cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs, restaurant reviews, travel information, or fun food facts. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. Please link to your specific post, not your blog's home page


  1. I’d never heard of it but as I was read it your post I thought of buttermilk pie. Thanks for the recipe! I brought you soup.

    1. I haven't heard of buttermilk pie Tina!

  2. Old-fashioned custard pie is a close relative of this. Sounds good. I guess every dairy-oriented culture has its own version. Even Hong Kong pastry makers have a version, presumably based on the English one.

    Best… mae at

  3. The pie is lovely, and sounds delicious! I like the whole process of "this-ing and that-ing" the ingredients and process. And then it turns out great!

  4. I don't consider myself a cook but I decided to include a few meals my husband and I made in my February Wrap-Up. If I can make them, anyone can!

    Like Tina, I thought of buttermilk pie when I read your post. If they're similar, I'm sure yours was delicious!

    1. To Jen — your food pics are nice. It’s too bad you don’t like to cook. Your blog wouldn’t accept my comment.

      best… mae at

    2. Thanks for joining in Jen!

  5. This sounds like a Chess pie that is popular (or used to be) in the southern part of the US, although I have never seen one in real a custard style pie with a crisp browned topping. It has a traditional pie crust with a filling of eggs, milk or buttermilk, flour, sugar and sometimes lemon. I would definitely try it but prefer my pies to be chocolate or berry!

    1. I made a chess pie once, but it was more a cream pie.

  6. I love the sound of this. I've never baked anything like it.

  7. I am quite a fan of custard and would imagine that I would like this pie. Looks delicious.

  8. I was not familiar with a Milk Tart, it looks wonderful.



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