This is one of a batch of Portuguese Custard Tarts I made at the weekend. I grew up on custard being poured over sponges, tinned fruit and often just into empty bowls during school and university refectory dinners. Not one of those puddings from my childhood comes close to the delicious custard taste in this tart. The Portuguese have got it right. It was my first time making custard and I can’t believe I waited until now to give it a try. I used a very simple recipe from the BBC (see below for link). I’m still amazed that the eggs didn’t scramble while heating the custard ingredients over the pan. I cheated and used ready to roll puff pastry. A professional baker I once met told me that life is too short for making puff pastry! If a professional can cheat then so can an enthusiastic amateur. It’s not my prettiest bake but it was up there for taste sensation. Next time I plan to use all butter puff pastry and will shape the pastry into higher sided cups to contain the filling better.
Conor is now world famous. I have no idea who is reading our story but I know which countries any readers log in from. There have even been two viewings from Portugal; home of the delicious Portuguese Tart. After Conor died, his Daddy and I came off social media. We closed down our (not very active) Facebook accounts as we wanted to protect ourselves and control how and when we heard news. Our little house in Dublin became our world.
Today is “Day of Hope”. All over the world bereaved parents are flying prayer flags they have made to honour their babies who didn’t get to stay. All over the world the breeze is sending out our prayers. Here are the flags made by Conor’s wee cousin, his Auntie and me, his Mummy:
We made Conor’s flags on a day that now holds very special memories. We all met at my parent’s house to celebrate Conor’s cousin’s 6th birthday. It became clear to us that this would be our last day all together as my father’s health was deteriorating. Stars of course feature but the middle flag also contains buttons from one of my Dad’s shirts and a metal button from an old pair of his jeans saying “Hold Fast”. Within four days of us making these Conor’s Grandad John passed away. Conor’s flags have been flown in my parent’s garden in London and are currently flying in our garden. We also brought them with us and hung them out during our walk around Howth Head in Dublin. This is a walk Conor’s Daddy and I do regularly to “recharge”.
I no longer know who or what I need to pray to for my intentions but I get great energy and comfort from being part of this Day of Hope and from being part of this international community of mothers and fathers. I am back on Facebook and twitter following bereaved parent groups and I am also part of an internet discussion forum. This time I am more active than ever. I follow, like, post, comment, tweet and reply. I know I am not alone. All over the world there are mothers just like me missing their sons and daughters and without social media we would not have found each other. Thanks to social media Conor is now “well travelled”:
I’d like to say a big thank you to all those parents who support each other online and to Carly Marie in Australia who set up today’s Day of Hope as part of her “project heal” following the loss of her son Christian http://www.carlymarieprojectheal.com. Conor has even travelled as far as Christian’s beach in Australia:
Here’s the link to today’s recipe. Remember, it’s ok to use pre-made pastry. Jus-Rol makes all butter puff pastry.