Mixed Spice Vanilla Slice

You will need to begin this recipe the night before.

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 x 375g packet Careme All Butter Puff Pastry, defrosted
  • 1 litre full cream milk, plus up to 2 cups extra
  • 220g caster sugar
  • 150g plain flour, sifted
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2 large, whole eggs
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1 tsp ground clove
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • Zest of ½ lemon
  • 3 hot cross buns, blended in food processor to a coarse crumb
  • Icing sugar, to serve

Method

  1. The night before, combine 1 litre of milk, cinnamon, vanilla bean paste, clove, nutmeg, lemon zest and hot cross bun crumbs in a large jug. Cover and put into the fridge for flavours to infuse overnight.
  2. The next day, line a sieve with muslin cloth (or a clean Chux) and strain the milk liquid through. Discard solids. You will need 1litre of milk in total so measure the amount of milk that you have strained plus top up with extra milk if needed. Pour milk into a medium sized saucepan and bring to the boil over a medium-high heat.
  3. Combine egg yolks, 2 of the whole eggs and sugar in a bowl. Use an electric beater to mix until the mixture is pale and fluffy. Add the flour and mix well to combine.
  4. Pour boiling milk over beaten egg mixture, whisking vigorously to combine. Return mixture to the saucepan and cook over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, whisking constantly (this is really important or the egg mixture will cook and become scrambled eggs!) until the mixture has thickened to a thick custard consistency. Immediately pour into a cool bowl then place cling film directly onto the surface of the custard and put into the fridge to cool completely.
  5. For the pastry, pre-heat oven to 200ºC fan-forced (220ºC non-fan oven). Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Lightly dust work surface and pastry with flour roll out to 30cm x 36cm. Cut the pastry in half horizontally and then cut each half into thirds vertically to give you 6 rectangles and place on a lined baking tray. Cover the pastry with a second sheet of baking paper and place another tray on top to weigh it down. Place in oven for 15 minutes, then remove the extra baking tray and baking paper. Reduce oven to 180ºC fan-forced (200ºC non-fan oven) and return pastry to the oven to bake for a further 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Fit a piping bag with a large nozzle and fill bag with cooled pastry cream. Start with one pastry rectangle, pipe 8 large dollops on top (or spoon over the pastry). Gently press another pastry rectangle on top and repeat so that you have three layers of pastry and two layers of pastry cream. To make the second mille feuille, repeat this process. To serve, lightly dust with icing sugar.
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