I never imagined I would be eating a custard slice when I stayed in Bilbao. But Pantxineta is effectively the Basque answer to a custard slice. It takes some time and careful preparation to make your own, but it is possible and you and seven friends will be glad you made the effort.

Ingredients

  • 500 grams of puff pastry
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 130 grams of sugar
  • 50 grams of flour
  • 20 grams of corn flour
  • 1 split Vanilla pod
For the topping
  • 200 grams of chopped almonds
  • 1 egg yolk lightly beaten
  • 30 grams of icing sugar

Preparation

To make the pastry: Place the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk until light and fluffy. Add the flour, corn flour and mix well. Bring the milk to the boil in a heavy bottomed saucepan with the vanilla pod. As soon as the milk bubbles, pour half on to the egg yolk mixture, stirring all the time. Pour this back into the pan with the rest of the milk and return to the heat. Cook out over a gentle flame, stirring continuously for 2-3 minutes until the mixture thickens. Pass the the thick custard through a fine sieve and leave to cool.
Cut the pastry into two halves and roll out on a lightly floured surface until you have two circles about 30cm in diameter. Place one in the middle of a lightly greased baking sheet. Spoon the thick pastry cream into the centre of the pastry and spread it out using a palette knife to within 5-6 cm of the edge. Glaze the exposed edge with the beaten egg and place the second pastry circle on top. Press down to seal the edges and chill in the fridge for 30-40 minutes. To cook: Preheat the oven to 220 Celsius or Gas Mark 8. Glaze the top with the beaten egg yolk and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 180 Celsius or gas mark 6 and cook for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, dust with the icing sugar and sprinkle with the chopped almonds. Return to the oven for 5-8 minutes to give a perfect glaze.