The gloriously short season of this polarising green fruit is finally upon us, and already social media sees friendships flourish as people equally try to get their hands on (or get rid of, if they have a tree) feijoas in droves.
They're an obvious match for baking - loaves, cakes, and muffins all do well with a seasonal overhaul when feijoas are here. Lesser used in savoury dishes, they are great in a chutney or relish, or for preserving while you've got the jars out. They rot just about as fast as they ripen, and freezing them is one way to extend your supply slightly - just scoop out the flesh and keep them in a container or sealed plastic bag (I do this for overripe bananas too, always peeling them first). Straight from the freezer is the perfect way to use them in smoothies, too.
So if you're not just eating them fresh at every opportunity, or blitzing them into your breakfast, or baking them into your morning tea, a sweet treat dessert is the next best option. These tarts are simply an assembly of a few things - sweet short pastry, custard, fresh feijoas, and a drizzle of caramel sauce. You could either make each element or simply buy and assemble
Feijoa custard caramel tarts
Makes 8 tarts
For the caramel sauce:
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup cream
2 Tbsp butter
Small pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Mix the sugar, cream, butter, and salt in a small saucepan on medium heat. Cook for about 5-6 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add the vanilla and cook for an additional minute. Remove from heat and allow to cool. The sauce will thicken as it cools, and will keep in the fridge for about a week.
For the tarts:
2 sheets sweet short pastry
2 cups custard
1 cup chopped feijoas
½ cup caramel sauce
Preheat oven to 190C. Cut the pastry into 8 squares (4 from each sheet).
Grease and line a standard sized muffin tray. Line with paper and add weights to blind-bake.
Bake for about 15 minutes, until the pastry starts to colour. Remove the outer paper layer and weights, and return to the oven for another 5 or so minutes until the pastry is golden and a little crisp on the edges.
Remove the tart shells from the oven and allow to cool.
These tarts work well either warm or cold, so when you're ready to serve, spoon custard into each tart shell (about 2 Tbsp) and then a spoonful of chopped feijoas.
Drizzle with caramel sauce and serve.
Feijoa breakfast smoothie
1 frozen banana
About ¾ cup feijoa flesh
½ cup natural yoghurt (or coconut yoghurt)
1 Tbsp oats
1 Tbsp almond butter (or whatever nut butter you prefer)
1 tsp honey
1 cup milk of your choice (I used almond milk)
Small handful ice
Blend all ingredients until smooth. Drink immediately.