The traditional milk tart with its familiar sweet crust and a creamy custard filling is an enduring South African favourite that originated from Dutch settlers in the 1600s.

As her tribute to Milk Tart Day, foodie Elmarie Berry has created a more luxurious version worthy of Dr Charles Niehaus 2017, Roodeberg’s top tier red blend crafted in honour of the brand’s illustrious founder.

Elmarie’s Milk Tart Layer Cake is her twist on the traditional ‘Jodetert’, a lavish stack of separately baked tiers filled with thick custard. While the origin of the name remains uncertain, Jews of Russian ancestry may have introduced this dessert to rural Afrikaner communities in the late 19th and early 20th century as it is strikingly similar to Russian honey cake.

Ingredients

Filling:

1 litre milk

Extra ½ cup milk

1 cup sugar

4 egg yolks

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon vanilla

 

Cake:

4 eggs

1 ½ cup sugar

½ cup milk

½ cup water

100ml oil

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups cake flour

10ml baking powder

2 teaspoons cinnamon

Extra cinnamon to sprinkle between layers

 

Method

Filling:

Heat the litre of milk, butter and sugar in the microwave for 3 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Mix the eggs and flour with the extra ½ cup of milk. Add the mixture to the boiling milk. Put back in the microwave for 1 minute and give it a stir with a whisk. Repeat this step 4-5 times until the mixture is thick. Add the vanilla. Cover with cling wrap and let it cool.

 

Cake:

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Prepare 2 x 20cm cake tins by greasing them and lining them with baking paper. Beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy. Heat the oil, water and milk until boiling. Add the vanilla.

 

Sift the flour, baking powder and cinnamon together. Fold the dry ingredients into the fluffy egg mixture. Add the hot milk, fold in until it forms a silky-smooth mixture. Divide the mixture between the 2 cake tins. Bake for 30 minutes. Let them cool for 10 minutes before removing from the tins.

 

Divide each layer into two. Fill each layer with the custard and sprinkle cinnamon between the layers.

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Recipe by Elmarie Berry for Roodeberg wines