Seren on Saturdays. Apple Jam and Custard Tart

I love a nice home-cooked custard tart, but this simple dish is transformed to a dish worthy of great merit and praise when coupled with the tang  of Bramley apple jam.

Seren’s Apple Jam Recipe

Not only does this jam taste wonderful, but it is so easy to prepare.


  • 1kg Bramley apples – roughly chopped without peeling or coring
  • 100ml  fresh lemon juice
  • 900g  white granulated sugar
  • Grated zest of 4 lemons


  • Place the chopped apples and lemon juice in a heavy based saucepan and gently simmer to a pulp, stirring occasionally to ensure no sticking.
  • Rub the apple pulp through a fine sieve and return to the pan with the grated lemon rind.
  • Heat gently and add the sugar. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Bring to the boil and cook rapidly until setting point is reached (104°c).
  • Spoon into  sterilised, hot jars and seal.

Apple Jam and Custard Tart Recipe

Cooking time 1 hour 10 minutes,
Oven temperature 200°C, 400°F, gas 6 160°C, 325°F, gas 3,


serves 4

225 g (8 oz) plain flour
pinch of salt
100 g (4 oz) salted butter
2 – 3 tablespoons ice cold water

For the filling

2 tablespoons Seren’s Apple Jam
600 ml (1 pint) milk
50 g (2 oz)  golden caster sugar, plus extra to sprinkle
4 egg yolks
few drops vanilla essence
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest


  1. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and rub in until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  2. Add the water and mix to form a dough. Knead very lightly, roll out on a lightly floured surface and use to line a 20 cm (8 in) fluted flan ring placed on a baking tray.  Do not be tempted to add more liquid.
  3. Prick the base with a fork and bake blind in a moderately hot oven for 10 minutes.
  4. Spread the jam evenly over the pastry. Heat the milk over a low heat until lukewarm, then beat in the sugar, egg yolks and vanilla.
  5. Pour over the jam, sprinkle the lemon zest  on top and bake in a moderate oven for about 1 hour until firm. Serve either hot or cold, sprinkled with a little extra caster sugar



  • Seren Charrington Hollins

    Seren runs a catering business and delicatessen in Mid Wales, but she is not your run of the mill caterer or deli owner. She is a mother of six and an internationally recognised food historian who has created banquets and historical dinner parties for private clients and television. Her work has been featured on the BBC, ITV & Channel 4 and she has appeared in BBC4’s Castle’s Under Siege, BBC South's Ration Book Britain, Pubs that Built Britain with The Hairy Bikers, BBC 2’s Inside the Factory, BBC 2’s The World’s Most Amazing Hotels, the Channel 4 series Food Unwrapped and Country Files Autumn Diaries. Her work has also been featured in The Guardian, The Times, Sunday Times, Daily Mail and The Telegraph. Her two most recent books are 'Revolting Recipes from History' and 'A Dark History of Tea'

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