Chefs' Recipes

Jaclyn Koludrovic’s gluten-free lemon verbena, white chocolate and fig tart

A contemporary trio of flavours in a dietary-friendly tart.
Over the top shot of a round tart topped withwhite chocolate and figs

Photo: James Moffatt

James Moffatt
1H 30M

“This is a Breton pastry I learnt when I was working at Circa in Melbourne, but I subbed in a gluten-free flour, which works really well,” says Jaclyn Koludrovic. “I love the flavour of verbena and the white chocolate. The crème fraîche cuts through that sweetness a bit, too.”

It’s best to prepare the separate elements of this recipe a day ahead then assemble on the day of serving.

This tart is gluten-free and nut-free.


Lemon verbena mousse
Cranberry syrup


1.Whisk egg yolks, vanilla and sugar in a bowl until very pale. Whisk in butter, then stir in combined sifted flour and baking powder with a pinch of salt and mix to form a dough. Turn out dough, shape into a disc and roll between 2 sheets of baking paper to a 26cm round. Transfer, still on paper, to a tray and refrigerate to chill (10 minutes). Grease a 20cm x 4cm metal ring mould and place on an oven tray lined with baking paper. Lift pastry into ring and gently press into base and sides. Trim edge level with top and freeze until firm (15 minutes).
2.Preheat oven to 180°C. Prick pastry base all over with a fork and blind bake until pastry sets (20 minutes). Remove paper and weights, and bake until golden (12 minutes). Set aside to cool.
3.Meanwhile, for mousse, melt chocolate in the microwave in 15-second bursts until beginning to soften. Whisk cream and crème fraîche in a bowl to soft peaks, then refrigerate. Bring milk, zest and lemon verbena leaves to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat, then remove from heat and set aside to infuse (10 minutes). Whisk egg yolks in a bowl, then add milk mixture, whisking continuously to combine. Return to saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring continuously, until just beginning to thicken (3-4 minutes), then remove from heat. Squeeze excess water from gelatine and stir into custard until combined. Strain over chocolate and whisk to combine, then gently fold in whipped cream mixture and chill until set (4 hours or overnight).
4.Meanwhile, for cranberry syrup, bring cranberry juice, sugar and 125ml (½ cup) water to the boil in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to low and simmer until thick and syrupy (10 minutes). Refrigerate to chill (30 minutes).
5.Whisk set mousse to soften then spoon into pastry case. Top with extra whipped cream and fig, drizzle with cranberry syrup and sprinkle with extra lemon verbena sprigs to serve.

Lemon verbena is available from nurseries, farmers’ markets and specialty grocers.


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