When I was a kid I thought you grew up, picked a life and that’s were you sat. You stayed in this grown-up place, and that was it. You’d found your grown-up life and you were done.
But my grown-up life seems to go through a comprehensive metamorphosis every few years. New city, new job, new people. For a natural-born gypsy with the soul of a wanderer, this isn’t a bad thing. Experiences are satisfying and change can be cleansing.
But then there are times when it seems catastrophically difficult, even when it’s necessary. Like cleaning out road rash so the wounds of a bike crash will heal. Sometimes it’s the cleaning that hurts more than the crash. But it’s part of the process, part of the evolution, part of necessity of growth that keeps us from the stagnation that will kill our souls.
Growth, change, healing, just because it hurts doesn’t mean it isn’t the right path. Keep moving forward, keep breathing, know that it isn’t selfish to fight for your own happiness. Know that it’s hard because it’s worth it.
These are the days I bake. The days I cover fruit in sugar. The days I open a beer, grab a friend and take stock of the things I’m truly grateful for. Because no matter what is on the the hard list, the good list can always be longer.
Lime Sugared Blackberry and Coconut Pale Ale Pastry Cream Tart
- Add ¾ cups of flour, salt and sugar to a food processor, pulse to combine. Add the butter and egg yolk, process until well combined and dough gathers around the blade.
- Add the remaining flour and pulse 6-8 times or until all the flour has been coated.
- Transfer to a bowl. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the beer until completely incorporated into the dough (don’t add the beer in the food processor or your dough will turn into a cracker). Dough will be very soft.
- Lay a long sheets of plastic wrap on a flat surface.
- Place the dough onto the plastic wrap, form into flat disks.
- Wrap disk tightly in plastic wrap, chill for 1 hour and up to 3 days.
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Roll the tart dough into an even circle on a lightly floured surface. Line a tart pan with the crust. Prick bottom of the tart with a fork several times, adding pie weights if desired.
- Bake at 350 until lightly golden brown, about 15-18 minutes. Allow to cool.
- In a sauce pan off heat add the milk, cream, coconut milk, vanilla, egg yolks, Saison, sugar and cornstarch, whisk until well combined. Add to medium heat, whisk until thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Pour pastry cream into crust. Chill until set and cooled, about 3 hours.
- Add the sugar and lime zest to a food processor, process until all the lime oils and sugars have been well combined, about 3 minutes (this can be done days or even weeks in advance, keep in an air tight container until ready to use.)
- Just prior to serving, add the blackberries to a bowl, pour the sugar over the berries, toss until well well coated.
- Top tart with the berries prior to serving.
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