Whisk evaporated milk and sugar together for approximately 10 minutes until light and fluffy and coffee coloured. Pour the mixture into a pastry case. Bake for 10 minutes.
Who would have guessed that, with just a tin of evaporated milk, twelves ounces of muscovada sugar and a bit of shortcrust pastry you would be able to transport yourself a few decades back to those days in school when you had no greater concern than working out some excuse for not doing the maths homework and/or worrying about your spots.
Yes, folks – it’s the golden talisman that brings a positive glow to the school memories of anyone over thirty…..Gypsy Tart…..the ultimate in food porn.
I have yet to meet the person whose eyes do not half close with pleasure at the mere mention of it – which is strange because, in general, school dinner memories are like dental drilling, necessary but unpleasant procedures that are best filed under F for forget. However the exception always is that combination of caramel and shortcrust pastry, accompanied with a dollop of whipped cream….pure nirvana.
What’s more GT is the kryptonite that can fend off the miserabilist fatwas of those pursed lipped food fascists whose sole purpose in life is to demonise anything that makes our existence joyful – and nothing can be guaranteed to rile them up more than the three deadly sins of evaporated milk, sugar and pastry all in one place.
As a teacher, of course, my one major perk was the pleasure of regularly feasting on gypsy tart for the entirety of my adult working life – and gloating over my non teaching friends as I reminded them of what they were missing by relating this little anecdote from my own experience.
Many years ago, while teaching a class of twelve year olds about the ancient Greeks (are children taught that stuff any more?) I was telling them about the gods and goddesses who the Greeks believed dwelt upon Mount Olympus and their diet of ambrosia and nectar, the food and drink of the gods. Someone asked if we knew what those substances were. I replied we did not know but maybe they were based on honey since they were supposed to be very sweet.
Wayne put up his hand and said if that was the case then he knew what the food of the gods really was…..”Gypsy Tart” said he.
The rest of the class laughed but I caught Wayne’s eye and nodded…”you know, Wayne, I think you could be right…..”
So, for those of you who would either recapture your school days or share your lunch box with the a god and a goddess this is a very sensible recipe – and, for the mavericks, here is one of the wittiest “how to do it” food pieces I have ever read…
BTW 01 – for any of my US friends – over here anything in a pastry case not topped with pastry we call a TART…if it is covered with pastry we call it a PIE….just sayin’
BTW 02 – do schools serve gypsy tart any more?