Custard tarts

Created on Tuesday, May 23, 2006.
Filed under .

One night during the weekend I dreamed of custard tarts. It was like a documentary, with a narrator and everything, and as the narrator spoke I saw images of strangers eating custard tarts. Custard tarts are not just basic pastry treats, said the narrator, but actually gauges of human nature by which many people can be measured and prejudged.

Consider the look of the custard tart, suggested the narrator. By looking at how done the pastry case is you can judge how busy the chefs were that day, because pastry darkens as attention is divided. If the pastry is a bit too light, you can safely conclude that a new employee, probably an apprentice, pulled the pastry out of the oven too soon. You can also look at the way the custard has been finished to get to know the chef who put the tart together. An even coating of cinnamon signifies a chef who can take the time to do things right.

If you taste the custard tart, you can get to know the apprentice who made the custard. It was probably an apprentice who made the custard. If the taste is too strong or too weak, you can be pretty sure that this didn’t go through a taste-test. The narrator went through great lengths to explain that most custards are flavoured with vanilla and sugar so as not to be too eggy. Interestingly, the dream-documentary also drew a parallel between custards with added colouring and the head pastry chef’s exposure to mass-produced pastry; a pastry chef who used to buy custard tarts from some place like Woolworths would think the fluoro-yellow colour is natural, and even desirable.

And finally you can get to know the customers by how they eat the custard tart. Some people, if eating mini tarts, will stuff the whole thing in their mouths, while others will bite it down to size. If eating larger tarts you could get people eating with a fork, others using a knife to cut the tart into pieces, and other just grab it and shovel it in. The meaning of each style of eating escaped the narrator at that time, but he hinted that each method revealed pretty significant, earth-shattering stuff.

Imagine the things you’d reveal about yourself when you ate a custard tart!

That's all there is, there isn't any more.
© Desi Quintans, 2002 – 2018.