I came across this old post and I wanted to re-share it because not only does it have a good story attached but it is one hell of a date recipe. I have been working on recipes with dates and took some inspiration from this little blast from the past. I hope you don’t mind me sharing again …x
Bullies most certainly were around when I went to school, they aren’t new but nobody really cared then. We suffered mercilessly and without any kind of parental protection. Were we stronger or just too scared to tell?
Get out the way you ugly Tart , she spat at my little sister, and I saw red.
Sharon was in every dark corner, in the girls toilets … at the change rooms…. at sport and in the canteen if you had money. In all of these places she had something nasty to say , she was hungry or needed money and she had several side kicks. There was one thing everyone knew about Sharon and that was that you never said no to her, never answered her back and moved out of the way when she told you to.
It was a bit of a shame that she caught our bus home in the afternoon. She was Queen of her domain in the bus. An enclosed tight space where no one could run or hide, where she could sneer or swear with no one to stop her. Every one moved when she bellowed at them and looked down as she passed just in case she caught your eye.
My sister was at the front of the bus trying to look small, looking at the ground. Still she was being called a Tart and I really felt angry
I moved down to the back of the bus after her and, as we threw our bags in the aisle she turned on me
” Hey aren’t you that Tarts sister?”. The side kicks snickered and she smirked as she glanced either way for their approval . Sharon was standing in the isle, facing me with her back to the end of the bus and although she was short, her look of sheer hatred could have scared a giant. I stood there facing her my heart thumping and my mind racing- would she hit me or push me, and what would I do if she jumped on me and started pulling my hair out? There were suddenly no sounds other than the blood pounding in my ears. No one was talking, there was just the engine of the bus firing up and the rattle and hum of it idling.
“What are you looking at?” The ugly curl of her lip made her sidekicks smile in anticipation. I found the only smart arse thing I could dig from the inside of my empty brain.
“I don’t know there’s no sign on it” I said, with impressive attitude I certainly didn’t feel.
This enraged her so much she stepped forward and put her hand up to push me, defensively I raised my hand meeting the top of her arm, just as the bus pulled out of the bay. The momentum threw her backward and me forward!. Sharon went flying onto the floor littered with bags, her dress over her head and her feet in the air. I clung to a seat with one hand and balanced myself as the driver gunned the engine and we left the bus bay. It was quiet just for a second, I felt a surge of terror but managed to deliver the threat I was sure would be beaten out of me at a later date.
“Don’t call my sister a tart again… do you hear?” My finger trembled as I jabbed it in her direction and then, every one cheered.
She did sneer at me but she never came near me or my sister again. This went down in legend. People talked about me bashing Sharon for a long time. Of course I never owned up to being a fraud. That wasn’t done either, back then…..
This is a tart that doesn’t mind being called one. Custard Tart with Citrus and Dates.
- 1 x blind baked pastry case x 20cm / 8 inches Oven temperature 160 C / 320 F
- 2 tablespoons of Tangelo juice (40ml)
- 300 ml ( 10.150 oz) thickened cream (1¼ cups)
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 Tablespoons of caster sugar
- Zest of 1 Tangelo
- Marinated dates
- 2 tangelos segmented without pith
- 500 gm fresh dates (1 lb) De seed and cut them in ½
- ½ cup caster 100 gm (granulated) sugar
- 1 x cup of tangelo juice (250 ml)
- A couple of extra pieces of Tangelo zest for flavour (will be discarded when finished)
- blind bake the pastry shell.
- In a bowl whisk the yolks, cream juice zest and sugar together with a drop of pure vanilla or ¼ vanilla bean.
- Pour this into a blind baked tart shell and bake for approx 20 minutes or until just set ( my tart tin is only 5 cm deep).
- Cool the tart. The custard will be more silky and soft if baked till just wobbly and eaten on the same day without going into the fridge. But if you need to refrigerate then do so.
- Put the juice , sugar & extra zest in a wide bottomed pot and bring to the boil. Turn down and stir to make sure the sugar is dissolved.
- Turn off the heat and toss the dates in the syrup. Pop the lid on and let them steep for a short while. Cool completely
- Segment two Tangelos to serve with the dates
- To serve toss the fresh segments with the dates and some syrup in a bowl, removing the extra zest pieces.
- Place onto the top of the tart and serve with extra whipped cream . I added tiny basil leaves.